Unalaska’s basketball teams are in Dillingham for their final games of the regular season. The PenAir Invitational marks the first time this year that the Raiders will face off against a 2A team in their region.
Girls’ Coach Casey Clausius is looking forward to the matchup.
"Dillingham’s always a good match every time," Clausius said. "It doesn't matter what team is good [or] what team is bad. It’s just been good overall competitive games we’ve played throughout the years. We don’t know what to expect. They have a new coach. They have a lot of the same players coming back, so it’s going to be a hard-fought game."
The Raider girls (5-7) are on a four-game winning streak heading into their first match Thursday against New Stuyahok.
Clausius says he’s hoping his team will ride that confidence and win the tournament.
"We haven’t won a tournament beside regions in their career for basketball, so let’s got out and see what we can do," Clausius said. "Just play hard, go out, and hopefully work together and you never know what could happen."
Both teams have challenging schedules with two games on Friday. But boys’ coach Riley Spetz says he isn't concerned about the double header.
"We have some kids that like to go out there and battle a little bit. There’s nothing they would rather be doing than sitting in the classroom or playing an extra basketball game, so I don’t see it as a big issue," Spetz said. "I know these boys have all played two games at one point or another."
The Raider boys (7-3) are on a three-game winning streak and Spetz is looking forward to their games against Dillingham.
If they can beat the Wolverines, he says it would be a statement victory.
"Offensively, we’ve kind of slowed our pace down, and we want to make sure we’re still utilizing our speed and our ability to control the tempo," Spetz said." We’ve just got to make sure that we know when we’re ruling the tempo and when we’re not."
KUCB's live coverage starts Thursday at 4:30 with the girls taking on New Stuyahok followed by the boys’ matchup against Dillingham at 6 p.m.
Correction: This story previously misstated the name of the tournament in Dillingham. It has been corrected.