Petersburg High School’s boys basketball team lost two close games on the road in Metlakatla over the weekend while the girls team added three more to their win column at home.
The Vikings lost 58-55 on Friday in Metlakatla and then lost Saturday’s game in overtime 50-45. Stewart Conn led scoring for Petersburg on Friday with 21 points while Kjell Wittstock had 12 and Alan McCay scored nine. On Saturday Conn was top scorer again for Petersburg with 13 points. Wittstock scored another 12 points and five players had four points apiece.
Petersburg won two home games against Metlakatla last month. Boys coach Rick Brock agreed Metlakatla looked like a different team on offense for this series. “Defensively especially on Saturday I thought we still did a very nice job,” Brock said. “They’re just a very good offensive team and we didn’t see that here because of what we were doing to them defensively. But, Danny Marsden is one of the best players in the state. Here I believe we held him to three points one evening and I don’t remember how many the other night. He had 18 and 21 on us, shot the ball really well and their whole team did. So, different squad.”
Petersburg is now 13-7 on the season. If the season ended now, the Vikings would be the second seed and Metlakatla would be number one. The Chiefs still have two more road series while Petersburg has one home series left. Brock says he expects to have to go through Wrangell and Metlakatla to win the regional crown. He thought the last two weekends were good preparation for the Southeast tournament. He said Saturday’s contest had the feel of a tournament game with both teams scoring back and forth and a loud crowd.
“Everytime we got the lead they would make a big basket,” Brock said. “The flip side of it, everytime they took a short lead we were able to climb back in. It came down to regulation and we had the basketball. We’re trying to get a look, didn’t get one, called a time out and missed a tough shot. And they scored immediately the first two baskets in overtime. So we climbed back in again and just ran out of time. Really the difference in Saturday’s game was we left too many points on the table. We were 12 from 20 from the free throw line and we hope to shoot 70-80 percent. If we had done that we would’ve walked away with a victory.”
The girls basketball team improved to 18-1 with three more wins last week all on their home court. Last Thursday, the Lady Vikings beat Haines 55-31. The top scorers for Petersburg were Kylie Wallace with 14, Chandler Strickland scored 12 and Ruby Brock added nine. On Friday Petersburg beat Metlakatla 44-29. Strickland and Adanna Kvernvik each scored nine, Wallace added eight and Josie Prus scored seven. Then on Saturday it was a daytime win over the MisChiefs 48-15. Brock led scoring with 16 points and Wallace scored 10.
The Lady Vikings continued to play tough defense and score baskets on the fast break. Girls Coach Dino Brock says his team tried to slow things down to get ready for some more half-court basketball. “Defensively, offensively we spent a lot of time this weekend working on running our half court offenses and not just running up and down the court but actually taking some time getting into our offenses and running different sets and doing things like that,” he said.
Brock expects to run into some team in the post season that will be able to slow down the Lady Vikings and he wants his team to be ready for that. He does expect to see a few surprises from teams heading into the regional tournament, based on what he saw last week. “There’s good coaches in our league and they’ll throw something at us,” Brock said. “Like Metlakatla threw a diamond press at us that we hadn’t seen and we actually… the kids did a really nice job as soon as they seen it they got us into the right offense that we practiced and we got about three or four layins out of it everytime they tried to do it. Yeah, people will throw different things at us and hopefully we’re prepared.”
The Lady Vikings are 18-1 and are on a 13-game winning streak. Both the boys and girls have this weekend off and play the following week at home to close out the regular season against Craig. The dates are not yet set depending on travel schedules for the Panthers but those will be the last chance to see the local teams play here this season.