Wins for both Juneau high school varsity football teams this weekend.
The Thunder Mountain Falcons on Friday beat the Sitka Wolves on a score of 25 to 6, just the margin they needed for the drive to playoffs.
A 27-yard field goal late in the game sealed it. If the Falcons beat Ketchikan next week, they will host the Southeast Conference playoff game in Juneau.
Friday’s win was also sweet revenge for a loss to Sitka earlier this month.
The Falcons’ Ben Jahn scored two touchdowns and the field goal; Joe Ia had the third. Sitka scored just one TD.
After four losses, the Falcons have won two games in a row, beating Ketchikan handily last week. Sitka, Ketchikan and Thunder Mountain are the only members of the small Southeast Conference, and play each other at least twice in the season.
On Saturday, the Juneau-Douglas Crimson Bears beat the Notre Dame Jugglers in a slow-starting, penalty-plagued game.
Notre Dame Regional Secondary School is in Vancouver, British Columbia. The Jugglers traveled to Juneau 17 years ago to play the Bears, and head coach Richard Scott says the hospitality and experience are always good, despite the loss.
“We lost in the last play of that game. This one wasn’t that close,” he said.
Juneau beat Notre Dame 33 to 13. Neither team scored in the first quarter, and a penalty against the Jugglers negated a touchdown. It was one of several that kept the Jugglers from scoring other touchdowns in the game.
“We were inside the 20-yard line three times and came away with nothing. When that happens you’re probably not going to win many of those games. You’ve got to take advantage when you’re in the red zone and we didn’t today,” Scott said after the game. “So we’ll go home and fix those things and get into league play in B.C.”
As Alaska teams steam toward playoffs, teams Outside are just getting started. This was Notre Dame’s second game of the season.
It was a bye week for JDHS, traditionally filled by playing a team from outside the state.
While the Crimson Bears’ defense was solid, the offense had trouble finding a rhythm. Head coach Rich Sjoross also blames penalties.
“You know whether they’re good penalties, bad penalties, it’s just hard to get in a flow when you see those flags flying. You don’t know what to call next when you’re starting at second and 25 instead of second and five, things like that. So I think that had a lot to do with us coming out and being hit and miss most of the night,” Sjoross said.
The Bears scored six touchdowns, beginning late in the second quarter. Phillip Fenumiai broke the ice with a one-yard carry.
Demetrius Campos had a 62-yard punt return and an 82-yard return on kick-off. Campos scored a third TD, Samson Nauer scored on an interception, and Sean Niumataevalu scored a touchdown on a pass from Fenumiai. Three of kicker Adam Soto’s extra points were good, and Notre Dame blocked two.
Notre Dame had two successful touchdowns and one extra point.