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Yakutat tested the physical limits of the defending B Bracket champion on Monday night, but Angoon’s scoring depth was too much in the end.
Angoon outran Yakutat in the second half as the champs showed once again why they’re the favorite to repeat in an 85-63 win in the second round of the 65th Annual Juneau Lions Club Gold Medal Tournament at Juneau-Douglas High School.
Yakutat’s physical brand of basketball took a toll on Angoon early, overcoming an 11-2 deficit to close within six points, 39-33, at halftime. But Angoon’s breakneck pace on both sides of the floor forced Yakutat out of its comfort zone as the defending champs ran away with their second win in the first two days of the tournament.
Angoon point guard Jordan Jamestown led the up-tempo attack Monday night and said his team is ready for any style of play.
“It was physical out there,” he said. “It’s good we started out 2-0 (in the tournament), but we’re ready for the break.”
Angoon is off until a 7:30 p.m. matchup with Haines on Thursday in a rematch of last season’s championship game.
Jamestown and the rest of his Angoon teammates know what comes with the territory of being the defending champs, and he said they’re ready for the bull’s-eye planted on their backs.
“We have to be prepared to get everybody’s best shot this year,” Jamestown said. “We’re the defending champs and everybody wants the crown.”
Yakutat’s Damien Long was a force early on, accounting for 22 of his 30 points in the first half. But once Angoon’s fast-paced style took control of the game, Long was not as effective in the second half.
“We just kept the tempo up. We kept pushing the ball and didn’t waver from the game plan,” Jamestown said. “We were fortunate enough to push the lead out to where it was.”
Ozelle Jamestown, brother of Jordan, struggled early, picking up three fouls in the first five minutes of the contest. But without his presence on the floor, Clayton Edwin picked up the pace, to say the least.
Edwin pumped in a team-high 26 points as his length and athleticism were too much down the stretch, knocking down mid-range jumpers and getting to the rim at will.
With Ozelle on the bench, Yakutat was able to take advantage in the paint, but it was a different story after halftime. After scoring only two points in the first half, Ozelle Jamestown responded to Yakutat’s physicality with seven tough points in the paint, giving him nine points on the night.
Jordan Jamestown scored just 10 points Monday night, but it was his role of distributor that facilitated the high-octane Angoon attack. And while he said it feels good to be back in Juneau for the Gold Medal Tournament, this team has only one goal.
“It’s always good coming back and playing in front of the home crowd,” Jordan Jamestown said. “But we just came back to defend our crown.”