Bears rebound to No. 2

Parity reigns in Alaska prep football

Posted: Tuesday, September 09, 2003

The Juneau-Douglas High School football team moved back up the state's rankings when the Anchorage Daily News/Alaska Coaches Football Poll was released on Monday.

After a week at No. 5, the Crimson Bears returned to the second spot in the rankings. It is the third time out of four polls that Juneau has been ranked No. 2.

Juneau trails a new No. 1, though, as the Dimond Lynx supplanted the previously undefeated West Anchorage Eagles at the top spot. Dimond beat West 27-23 on Friday, one week after the Lynx came to Juneau and claimed a 28-27 victory. This is the third different No. 1 of the season.

Juneau (4-1 overall, 2-1 Cook Inlet Football Conference) rebounded from its only loss to beat the Service Cougars 42-35 in Juneau's first road game of the year Saturday in Anchorage.

Service, which is unranked and has a three-game losing streak, held the top spot in the season's first poll.

West's loss opens things up in the rankings, as there are no teams left in the state with an unblemished record.

Dimond (4-1 overall, 3-1 CIFC), which lost to No. 4 Chugiak earlier this season, garnered seven of the 12 first-place votes and earned 42 poll points. The Lynx will travel out of state this weekend to play a team from Colfax, Calif.

Juneau, which leads the CIFC in points scored (192) and fewest points allowed (81), had three first-place votes and 31 points as the only other team to be listed on every coaches' ballot.

"We haven't been terribly convincing," Juneau coach Reilly Richey told the Anchorage Daily News. "But I guess nobody in the Cook Inlet has been convincing in terms of dominating people."

The Crimson Bears host the defending state champion Bartlett Golden Bears at 8 p.m. Friday night for Juneau's final home game of the regular season. The junior varsity teams play at 5 p.m. Juneau's JV is undefeated at 4-0, following Saturday's 73-20 victory over the Service JV team.

West (4-1 overall, 2-1 CIFC) edged out idle Chugiak (2-2 overall, 2-1 CIFC) for the No. 3 spot in this week's poll, although the Mustangs did pick up the remaining two first-place votes. West had 23 poll points and Chugiak had 22.

Palmer, which wasn't ranked last week, climbed into the No. 5 spot after beating previous No. 4 Lathrop. The Moose (3-2 overall,

2-0 Northern Railbelt) picked up nine poll points. Juneau blanked Palmer 17-0 three weeks ago.

"They're all even, man," said Bartlett coach John Jessen, whose team is unranked with a 1-4 overall record (0-3 CIFC).

Things aren't any clearer in the small schools poll, as Eielson climbed into a tie for the top spot with previous No. 1 Kenai Central.

Kenai picked up five first-place votes to Eielson's two, but both teams tied with 29 poll points. Soldotna, Nikiski and Kodiak round out the small schools rankings.

In other games last weekend involving Southeast teams, the Ketchikan Kings lost 64-0 to visiting Francis Parker School of San Diego, while the Sitka Wolves dropped a 33-0 decision at Houston.

The Wolves, who only had 13 players for their two-game road trip, lost a couple athletes to injuries in the Houston game and Sitka coach John Cawyer said he was worried he might have to forfeit Thursday's game against Anchorage Christian Schools.

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