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Intensity key for JDHS hockey

While offense has struggled a bit, defense has been solid this season

Posted: Friday, December 21, 2007

More than shots on goals or lighting up the scoreboard, Juneau-Douglas High School hockey coach Dave McKenna wants to see three periods of intensity from his team this weekend.

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The Crimson Bears (5-5) will host Tok for two games at Treadwell Arena this weekend. The teams will play at 8 p.m. Friday and 7 p.m. Saturday.

"I don't think we have put that together yet," JDHS coach Dave McKenna said. "We saw that against Colony. ... That really shows the difference in our effectiveness when we're focused opposed to not focused. When we are, we take care of our positional play. When not, we regress and were eaten alive."

Juneau-Douglas played sound, disciplined hockey in stretches of last weekend's defeats to Colony. However, the Knights' ability to get loose pucks frequently led to quality scoring opportunities.

Also, JDHS struggled to put the puck on the net against Colony. In two 8-1 losses, JDHS was outshot 96-24.

"It hasn't been a problem just with Colony," McKenna said. "It was a problem with Kenai, Homer, almost everyone except Nikiski early on. Generating offense has been an issue. We've been working on it."

Juneau-Douglas junior Albert Svensson said the team has been working in practice on generating more offense.

"I think we've been too worried about everything being perfect and not getting those grinding goals that we need to get more often," Svensson said. "We just need to stop thinking and shoot the puck."

While the offense has struggled a bit, Juneau-Douglas' defense has been solid throughout the season.

Playing a disciplined, positional style, the Crimson Bears haven't allowed too many odd-man rushes on net. Defensemen Chris Klawonn, Nick Rutecki and captain Kacy Carlson have been solid on their skates.

In goal, Sam Post has been nothing short of spectacular. The senior made 46 saves in Friday's loss to Colony and has stood tall throughout the season.

"Our defense has been doing good," Svensson said. "We've been covering the zone pretty well."

While Juneau-Douglas dwarfs Tok in terms of school size, the Wolverines present a solid test for the Crimson Bears.

The Wolverines knocked off Homer 2-1 on Saturday despite being outshot 44-21.

"It's going to be fun," Svensson said. "It'll be a test to see how we bounce back from Colony. (Tok) is definitely a good team."

SVENSSON TO REPRESENT ALASKA

JDHS junior forward Albert Svensson was selected Monday to represent Alaska in the Arctic Winter Games.

Svensson will play for Team Alaska in the midgets age group for players born in 1990 or later. Svensson's teammate, Logan Miller, was selected as an alternate.

"I was very excited," Svensson said about finding out he made the team. "I didn't think there was a very good chance because how the skill is across Alaska."

The Arctic Winter Games take place in March in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories, Canada. The Games feature athletes from nations and territories around the Arctic Circle.

Two other Juneau players, Zack Bicknell and Lenka Craigova', were selected as alternates for the bantams team. Bantams are for players born in 1993 or later.

"I think across Alaska people are starting to realize (Juneau) is getting a little more serious about hockey," Svensson said.

• Contact sports editor Tim Nichols at 523-2228 or sports@juneauempire.com.



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