Bears split weekend series

Juneau-Douglas tops Petersburg Friday but falls to Fullerton

Posted: Sunday, December 23, 2007

The Juneau-Douglas High School basketball team split a weekend series with two different teams over the weekend.

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The Crimson Bears (3-2) rallied to defeat Petersburg 56-52 on Friday but fell short to Fullerton, Calif., 44-40 on Saturday.

In Saturday's game, JDHS trailed 37-25 after three quarters. The Crimson Bears managed just 14 first-half points as they fell behind 26-14 at halftime.

Juneau-Douglas tried to stage a final rally in the fourth quarter, trimming the Indians' lead to three points late in the game. Fullerton (7-4) held on for the win as Alex Arellano drained 5-of-6 free throws in the final eight minutes.

Faifo Levale led JDHS with 11 points while Eric Gross scored 10 points in defeat. Geoff Craig had eight points, Dominique Brinson tallied six points, Ryan "Bubba" Larson hit a 3-pointer, and Erick Waters made a field goal in defeat.

Arellano led Fullerton with a game-high 17 points while Stephen Torres scored all eight of his points in the second quarter.

In Friday's 56-52 win over defending Class 3A state champion Petersburg, Juneau-Douglas' offense looked disjointed and out of rhythm at times.

However, when JDHS needed to make a play to seal the win, it executed to perfection.

Holding a 54-52 lead with 13.1 seconds left, 270-pound forward Levale slipped past the defense and received a perfect inbound pass from Larson. Levale rumbled to the hoop for a fast-break insurance layup to seal a win over the determined Vikings (2-1).

"They were guarding me tight, me and Bubba had that wink," Levale said. "I gave him that wink and he hit me with a chest pass. We talked about it, but usually it's never there. Luckily it was there in that situation. We needed that."

Just 2.7 seconds earlier, Larson set up the game-clinching bucket by stealing an inbound pass intended for defending Class 3A player of the year Cameron Severson. Larson dove on the ball and alertly called timeout.

Those two plays concluded a game that was high on intensity, if not in execution.

Both teams struggled to find a consistent groove on offense. However, Juneau-Douglas' defensive hustle and depth proved the difference.

Web links

For video of the JDHS-Fullerton game, visit www.juneauempire.com.

The Crimson Bears played all but two members of their 14-member team while Petersburg when just seven deep. Severson played all but 50 seconds while point guard Jon Mazzella played 31:14 of a possible 32 minutes.

"You could tell they were getting tired," Larson said.

Juneau's depth proved crucial because Petersburg led by as many as 10 points in the second half.

Severson, who played forward and point guard Friday, found numerous ways to contribute as he posted 26 points, 14 rebounds, three assists, three steals and two blocked shots in the loss.

"They were better than the teams we saw earlier," JDHS coach Steve Potter said. "Obviously we couldn't stop Severson, but they definitely fatigued at the end of the game."

Juneau-Douglas fought back by getting tough defensively. Down 36-28 late in the third quarter, Gross made a diving steal and passed to Cody Grussendorf for a layup. Larson added two more buckets as JDHS cut the lead to 38-34 with one quarter remaining.

In the fourth, Gross' hustle continued to spark the Bears. Gross dove for two lost balls during the fourth quarter, each leading to 3-point buckets by Larson and Brinson when he passed to them from his backside.

In all, JDHS hit 6 of 17 from beyond the 3-point arc.

"They got their shooters loose a few times in the fourth quarter," Petersburg coach Rick Brock said. "There was a scramble for the ball and it always seemed like it got to a kid's hands who hit a 3 at the wrong time."

Juneau-Douglas had another balanced scoring attack. Larson led JDHS with 19 points while Brinson tallied 15 points. Brinson also contributed four steals.

Up next for JDHS will be the Capital City Classic. The Crimson Bears will host Club Kilsyth from Australia at 8 p.m. Thursday followed by defending Class 4A state champs Wasilla at 8 p.m. Friday and Tahoma, Wash., at 8 p.m. Saturday.

FRIDAY'S GAME

JUNEAU-DOUGLAS 56, PETERSBURG 52

JDHS (52) 11 10 13 22 - 56

PHS (52) 7 15 16 14 - 52

JDHS - Brinson 5-16 3-6 15, Hotch 1-3 0-0 2, Mahar 0-0 0-0 0, Waters 1-2 0-0 2, Bavard 0-0 0-0 0, Grussendorf 1-1 0-1 2, Craig 0-0 0-0 0, Ibesate 1-3 0-0 3, Larson 7-15 2-4 19, Lauth 0-1 0-0 0, Gross 2-13 2-2 6, Gundersen 0-0 0-0 0, Fenumiai 1-2 0-0 2, Levale 2-7 1-2 5, Totals 21-63 8-15 56.

Petersburg - Mazzella 1-12 5-6 7, Smith 2-6 1-2 6, Severson 9-17 8-11 26, Rosvold 0-0 0-0 0, Peeler 0-0 0-0 0, Thompson 2-2 0-0 4, McCay 0-3 0-0 0, Akeus 1-2 0-2 2, Birchell 4-6 0-0 8. Totals 19-48 14-21 52.

3-Point Goals - Juneau-Douglas 6-17 (Brinson 2-7, Hotch 0-2, Waters 0-1, Ibesate 1-2, Larson 3-5), Petersburg 0-8 (Mazzella 0-3, Smith 0-2, Severson 0-2, McCay 0-1). Fouled out-None. Rebounds - Juneau-Douglas 36 (Gross, Levale 7), Petersburg 41 (Severson 14). Assists-Juneau-Douglas 14 (Hotch, Gross 3), Petersburg 11 (Mazzella 7). Technicals-None.

SATURDAY'S GAME

FULLERTON, Calif. 44, JUNEAU-DOUGLAS 40

JDHS (40) 6 8 11 15 - 40

FHS (44) 8 18 11 7 - 44

JDHS - Brinson 4 2-2 6, Hotch 0 0-0 0, Mahar 0 0-0 0, Waters 2 0-0 2, Bavard 0 0-0 0, Grussendorf 0 0-0 0, Craig 6 2-2 0, Ibesate 0 0-0 0, Larson 3 0-0 3, Lauth 0 0-0 0, Gross 6 4-7 10, Gundersen 0 0-0 0, Fenumiai 0 0-0 0, Levale 10 1-2 11. Totals 31 9-13 40.

Fullerton - Torres 8 0-0 8, Devos 0 0-0 0, Williamson 0 2-2 2, Arellano 10 7-8 17, Mancini 6 2-4 8, Turowski 2 0-0 2, Chang 4 1-6 5, Claes 2 0-0 2. Totals 32 12-20 44.

3-Point Goals - Juneau-Douglas 1 (Larson 1), Fullerton 2 (Torres 2).

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



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