Keenan boys back to business in 3-2A

01/21/2014 10:41 AM

01/21/2014 10:47 AM

Keenan’s boys basketball team returns to the business of maintaining a long run of conference success with a Tuesday home game against Eau Claire.

The third-ranked Raiders (11-6, 3-0) have won 32 consecutive region games dating back to a 68-53 loss to the archrival Shamrocks on January 7, 2011. Zach Norris’ powerhouse has won outright or shared eight region championships in nine seasons since dropping down to Class 2A.

It will be the fourth game in five days for the busy Raiders. Keenan beat top region contender Fairfield Central, 66-55, on Friday before dropping close non-region games against Class 3A city rivals Lower Richland and A.C. Flora on Saturday and Monday, respectively.

Freshman Tariq Simmons tallied a game-high 22 points on 10-for-13 marksmanship from the field against FC.

Keenan then dropped a 74-73 overtime decision to LR and fell 80-76 against A.C. Flora. In both cases, the Raiders faded in the fourth quarter. LR caught Keenan with a 21-12 run in the fourth quarter before pulling out the decision in extra time. Flora’s 33-24 burst in final frame proved decisive.

The Raiders were without the services of senior leader Marcus Stroman against Lower Richland, but nearly pulled out a win behind the play of Antwan Holmes (18 points), Simmons (14), Chris Bernard (14), Sam Harmon (10) and Javontae Davis (10). Stroman was back in action against Flora, scoring 20 points with nine assists and four steals. Simmons, however, led the way again with a career-high 28 points.

Simmons is averaging 13.8 points a game and is shooting 50 percent from the field.

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