Lady Vikings wage war with Wrangell Wolves
Bessie Johnson takes a charge from an aggresive wolf. The games in Wrangell were physical, and the Lady Vikings stayed tough.
Last weekend all the Vikings stormed into Wrangell for some fiercely competitive homecoming basketball.
Friday night’s girls varsity game was a wild one.
The Wrangell Lady Wolves are an aggressive, physical team and they came out hungry, jumping out to an eighteen-point lead early in the game.
Going into the half, Petersburg was down by 13 points, but they came charging into the third quarter ready to fight back.
“Once we adjusted to Wrangell’s physical play we had a really strong second half,” said Petersburg girls coach Dino Brock.
The Lady Vikings outplayed the Wolves in the third quarter but Wrangell still held a nine-point lead going into the final quarter.
In the fourth the Petersburg girls cranked the volume up to eleven, and had a 21-point quarter.
“We didn’t quit at all,” said Brock. “Our pressure got to them and we did a really good job taking care of the basketball and getting good looks at the basket.”
In the final moments of the game Petersburg scored to tie the game at 49 points.
Wrangell charged the basket, their player diving toward the hoop hoping to draw a foul and the ref blew the whistle with one second left in the game.
The referee called an over-the-back foul on Carolyn Kvernvik.
Wrangell’s shooter hit one out of two free throws and won the game, 50-49.
Free throw trouble nagged at the Lady Vikes throughout the game.
“We should have shot free throws better. That really hurt us. We were 9 for 25,” said Brock. “But other than that, it was a good game for us.”
Saturday night’s game was opposite in many ways from Friday. Instead of starting slow and eventually mounting a red-hot comeback, The Lady Vikings started strong, taking an early lead of 17-10. But this time the comeback kids were the Wolves. They slowly worked their way back in and got a solid lead.
Petersburg was down by around three possessions throughout the latter part of the game and lost 36-42.
Action at the foul line defined the game. Petersburg improved their shooting over the night before, but they gave up a lot of points by sending Wrangell to the free throw line too much.
“We shot the ball a lot better from the free throw line. We shot 14 for 21, which was a nice percentage,” said Brock.
“We gave up 32 free throws, put them at the line way too many times,” he said. “They were really physical games. Both teams went at each other hard.”
Wrangell’s top player, Loni Buness (left), had a hard job containing the Lady Vikings’ unstoppable Carolyn Kvernvik.
Brock was pleased with the distribution of scoring across the Petersburg team over the weekend.
On Friday Carolyn Kvernvik led the scoring with 21 points. Bessie Johnson, Emily Luczak, and Jael Swanson each had 6, with the rest of the points even distributed across the team.
“It’s nice we’re getting other kids looking to score,” said Brock.
Comparing this homecoming matchup with December’s homecoming games in Petersburg, Coach Brock said both teams played much, much better. While the earlier matchup was plagued by turnovers from sloppy ball handling, this time around both teams took much more care of the basketball and had greatly improved defensive pressure.
Next up for the Petersburg Lady Vikings are home games against Craig. There will be senior appreciation during Saturday night’s varsity game.