THE LEGENDARY 'C' BRACKET
The Klawock Old Totems moved one step closer to the championship round of the Gold Medal Tournament with a 96-80 win over Angoon ANS in Tuesday's Legendary C Bracket quarterfinal game.
Sid Edenshaw continued his scoring rampage with 34 points to lead the Old Totems, including three 3-pointers. He was also a force in the paint which drew a lot of attention from Angoon's defense and paid off with many trips to the charity line where he shot 83 percent (15-for-18).
Edenshaw scored 28 in his first game against Klukwan on Sunday and is currently the leading scorer in the Legendary C Bracket with a 31-point average.
"We're starting to gel little by little and we controlled the ball as well as the tempo," Edenshaw said. "You can't take nothing away from Angoon. That team has a lot of heart. They're a scrappy team and play tough defense all the time."
Angoon suffered a setback right off the bat when Frank Lane had to be carried off the court one minute into the game with a strained knee and did not return the rest of the game.
Klawock held a slight lead throughout most of the game and held a 48-41 point lead at the half, but at the 7:35 mark of the second half, Angoon's Ken Johnson hit two of his 24 points with a runner in the paint to bring Angoon within three points at 68-65.
Block that shot: Angoon's Joey George (44) gets his hand on the shot of Klawock's Sid Edenshaw (30) during a winners' bracket game on Tuesday in the Legendary C Bracket of the Gold Medal Basketball Tournament at Juneau-Douglas High School.
MICHAEL PENN / THE JUNEAU EMPIRE
However, the Old Totems stood tall and went on a 11-2 run in the next three minutes to put the game out of Angoon's reach and played a good game of keep-away in the final minutes.
Angoon's Andy Lee led his team in scoring with 29 points but his valiant effort couldn't surpass Klawock's depth. Glenn Miller was the only other Angoon player to score in double figures with 10.
"The fatigue factor hit us in the second half. The minute you slack off, they're right on top of you," Lee said. "We lost a lot of players to injury and we don't have a big man to match up with their three to four big men."
Klawock had three players other than Edenshaw score in double digits. Sam Peters had 16, Mark Heard 15 and Sam Thomas added 11 points.
The Old Totems had a significant advantage at the foul line, making 29 of 39 including 15 of 18 from Edenshaw. In contrast, Angoon made it to the line just 15 time, making 10 free throws.
"These guys have been playing for several years around the Northwest," Klawock manager Dewey Skan said. "Most of these people are our friends and family and a lot of these guys have been around for 23 years or more."
No room to drive: Sitka's Noem Staton (32) tries to find room to drive around the defense of Yakutat's James Bremner, right, during a winners' bracket game Tuesday in the Legendary C Bracket.
MICHAEL PENN / THE JUNEAU EMPIRE
Yakutat 68, Sitka 66
Yakutat ANS is making a living out of close games in this year's tournament. Two nights after defeating the Hoonah Old-Timers 114-113, Yakutat won another nail-biter by holding off the Sitka Old-Timers 68-66 on Tuesday night.
The win advances Yakutat into the tonight's semifinals against Klawock starting at 7 p.m., with the winner of that game moving into Saturday's championship game.
The game was neck and neck the entire way. Yakutat held a 68-63 lead with under a minute to play when Sitka's Gordon Bruin drained a 3-pointer to make it 68-66 with five seconds to go. But Yakutat managed to stay away from Sitka's desperate foul attempts and the clock ran out.
"They took us out of our game," Bruin said. "They didn't crumble and turnovers at the end really hurt us. They are a fighting, scrappy bunch who goes after every loose ball. They're very quick and aggressive and were the better team tonight."
Mike Jensen's 20 points led Yakutat in scoring while Rod Schug notched 18 and James Bremmer contributed 11 points.
Sitka was led by Bruin who led all scorers with 31 points, including four 3-pointers. Jim Phillips scored 14 while George Erickson added 10.
"They have a lot of tough players," Schug said. "They work as a team and support each other well. This is my first time in the tournament and I'm impressed by how organized it is and I'm mostly impressed by the players."
Schug said that the day off between their thrilling win over Hoonah on the opening night helped them, but hurt Hoonah in their loss that knocked the two-time defending champs out the tournament.
"That Hoonah game was emotionally draining and the day off helped." Schug said. "Hoonah had to come back the next day and I'm glad we didn't."
When asked about Yakutat's chances the rest of the way in the tournament, Schug was cautiously optimistic. "We're just gonna try our best," Schug said.
Jeff Kasper can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.