Skagway School Sports
Left, Trevor Cox takes down an opponent at the Pilot Tourney in Juneau earlier this season. Klas Stolpe, Juneau Empire. Right, Cox and coach Duppy Ticarro pose at the entrance to the state wrestling tourney in Anchorage. Photo submitted
Cox almost knocks off region champ at State
Trevor Cox may not have won a match during his first state wrestling tournament, but the Skagway sophomore made a statement.
Coach Duppy Ticarro said Cox wrestled tough in both of his matches.
Cox opened the ASAA 1/2/3A tournament with a loss in a fall at the 3:54 mark to Nathan Carsterns of Nikiski, but it was his second match that turned heads.
Cox found himself matched against a familiar foe, SE region champ Hunter Fitch of Craig, who had lost just four matches all season in the 132-pound weight class.
In one of his best matches of the season, Cox took Fitch to overtime, where he lost on points, 11-6. The match established Cox as a region favorite for next year. This year he was seeded third in the region and finished fourth, earning his trip to State.
Now Cox’s focus turns from the mat to the hardwood for the next few months, where he’ll try to repeat his all-conference performance from his freshman season. – JB
Members of the boys’ team drill with hockey sticks up on their shoulders as they slide in defensive stance across the court. The three-minute drill teaches the kids to keep their hands up on defense. JB
‘Skills, skills, skills’ the focus as Panther teams open hoop practice
By JEFF BRADY
Skagway High School is back to having two basketball teams after a year’s hiatus without enough players for a girls’ squad.
Last year Skagway fielded a coed team that finished with a 9-17 record, and the two teams will try to best that record this year and compete for a shot at a state tourney berth.
The teams open the season with seven home games in seven days, starting on Jan. 7 with Hoonah (see schedule below), the Don Hather Tourney against Yukon foes, and finishing up with Kake.
Kent Fielding is back to coach the boys’ team, while Courtney Mason and John O’Daniel have stepped up to co-coach the girls.
SHS Girls Roster
Seniors Hannah O’Daniel (SG/PG, captain) and Jade Cook (C/F, captain); junior Zoe Wassman (C/F); sophomore Al Weber (C/F); freshmen Denver Evans (SG), Kiara Selmer (SG), Dainean Teeluk (C/F), Hailey Jensen (PG), 8th grader Kara Whitehead (C/F). Madison Cox, manager.
Coach O’Daniel said the team is pretty young but spent the summer at open gym and camps to get ready for the season. They have improved and they expect to compete for the top spot in the league.
After playing seven games in a week “we’ll get to see in how good a shape we are and how good we are,” O’Daniel said.
Coach Mason, a standout high school and college player from Skagway, Juneau and UAF, said she is excited to be working with the Skagway kids.
“So far it’s a great group of girls,” she said. “We haven’t had a lot of practices with volleyball season overlapping. The first ones were about basketball conditioning and getting into that kind of shape, and now we are just starting to incorporate plays that we will be running this year.”
O’Daniel said he is glad Mason is co-coaching, because it allows them to work separately with the younger and more experienced players on honing skills.
“Having two coaches helps to break up practice and do extra work with the new kids while the older kids are working on what they need to work on,” he said
O’Daniel is also excited about coaching his daughter, Hannah, a senior co-captain and all-conference performer from last year. She and senior captain Jade Cook are the last players from the state championship team of 2011, and Zoe Wassman and Hailey Jensen are the only others with experience. But he said they are all working hard, listening and are energetic.
“I believe the town will be very excited to see girls’ basketball back and hopefully we will put a very good product out on the court,” he said.
SHS Boys Roster
Senior Zack Wassman (G), Donovan Henson (F); juniors Richard Deichen (F), Dominique Foote (G), Trysten Burnham (F); sophomores Trevor Cox (G), Alex Ackerman (F); freshmen Colton Belisle (F), Ethan Goebel (F); 8th grader Micah Cook (G).
Coach Fielding is happy to have 10 players on the varsity this season, but as of last week, he hadn’t had a full squad practicing together due to the wrestling season and vacations.
So the focus has been on “skills, skills and skills,” so they can be ready when all-conference Trevor Cox is plugged into the mix as point guard.
“We’re going to be quick this year, but small,” Fielding said.
The team will be running an offense with Cox flanked by fellow guards Zack Wassman and Dominique Foote on the wings, and a host of kids playing small forward.
Wassman and forward Donovan Henson are the only seniors.
Fielding said his approach this year with the boys’ team has been more on improving skills. The leaders on last year’s team – boys and girls – were pretty skilled and didn’t need as much work.
“There’s a lot more going back to basics and working on skills this year, trying to simplify things to get the structures down,” he said. “I didn’t have to explain as much last year.”
With a lack of height and running three guards and two small forwards, the offense and defense also changes, he noted.
Jan. 7-8 Hoonah
Jan. 10-12 Don Hather Tourney
Jan. 13-14 Kake
Jan. 28-29 at Thorne Bay
Jan. 30-31 at Klawock
Feb. 1-2 at Hydaburg
Feb. 13-15 at Tok Tourney
Feb. 21-22 Angoon
Feb. 24-25 at Yakutat
March 5-8 Regionals at Ketchikan
March 15-19 State at Anchorage
Watch for results and updates on the SHS Basketball Page on the News website, and follow the team’s page on Facebook.