Courtesy Daily Sitka Sentinel
The Mt. Edgecumbe Braves dropped a tight game to their crosstown rivals from Sitka High Jan. 31 at SHS. The Braves held the lead briefly in the fourth quarter, but the Wolves rallied for a 48-42 win to stay undefeated.
The Braves fell behind 5-0 and 11-5 in the first quarter, but found their footing and were down just 22-19 coming out of the half. Sitka's top scorer, Mik Potrzuski, picked up his fourth foul with about three minutes to go in the third and the Braves made their move. Dominique Hall scored an old-fashioned three-point play that left the score 28-27 in Sitka's favor, and Jaylin Prince followed up with two free throws that gave the Braves their first lead of the game at 29-28. Edgecumbe finished the third quarter on an 8-2 run and had a 32-30 lead at the fourth quarter opened. The Braves scored first in the fourth, but Sitka responded with a 9-2 run to take a 39-36 lead. Edgecumbe hung around down the stretch but the Braves were unable to retake the lead. Trailing 44-40 with about 40 seconds left, junior guard Kacy Green got a pretty good look at a three-pointer, but the shot missed and Sitka scored a layup on the other to ice it.
Prince ended up with 17 points and 10 boards. Coach Archie Young said the senior from Kotlik continues to "out work everybody he plays against. Hall had 13 points, Ford scored 8 and Green ended up with 6.
The loss snapped a five-game winning streak for the Braves and dropped Edgecumbe to 8-5 overall and 4-1 in the conference. Edgecumbe came into the game having beaten Wrangell twice by large margins over the weekend. Young said he was extremely pleased with how hard the Braves are playing. He said Tuesday’s game came down to a few plays in key spots. He said the Braves started a little slowly and may have gotten a bit tired in the final minute or two of the fourth quarter. Other than that, it was a solid effort for the Braves in a game played in an atmosphere similar to what they’ll see at regionals in a few weeks.
“I definitely felt like we had a few chances that slipped away,” Young said, adding: “There’s a lot of room for growth in the next three weeks.”
Young said it was a good game for Hall, who brought the ball up for the first time and was aggressive on the offensive end. The game against Sitka was the seventh in 10 days for the Braves. They were scheduled to host Craig for conference games on Japonski Island Feb. 3-4. The Braves beat Wrangell 71-40 Jan. 28, then topped the visiting Wolves 68-50 Jan. 29.
Leo Ford, a junior from Hooper Bay, had 20 points in both games. Hall and Prince were both in double figures each night against Wrangell.