Griffins Fall to Keenan

Jalyn Davis (3) puts in the revers layup while Chanti Jones (15) looks for the potential rebound.

The Keenan Raiders capitalized on every opportunity Friday night, out-shooting, out-scoring and out-rebounding the Fairfield Central Griffins en route to a 61-43 drubbing at Keenan.

Only two Griffins – Keith Workman and Daniel Maple – managed to reach double digits Friday night, with 16 and 12 points respectively, while the Raiders were led with 23 from the hot hand of Eric Hopkins, who nailed down 18 points from beyond the stripe, all in the second half.

The Griffins enjoyed a narrow 9-7 lead halfway through the opening quarter, but Keenan tied the game with 3:12 to play and never trailed again. With less than two minutes remaining in the first frame, it was clear that the Griffins had lost their mojo, with shots banging off the rim and the ball slipping into enemy hands at inopportune times.

The Raiders took a 15-11 edge into the second quarter and ran up a 17-12 lead with 6:04 to play. A Fairfield run cut the lead to 19-8, but in the final two minutes of the half the Raiders took control, shutting down the Griffin offense to take a 24-18 lead into the break.

In the second half, Hopkins came alive for the Raiders, jacking up shot after shot from 3-point land, while Keenan’s Charles Smith worked the inside angle to help Keenan build a 34-19 lead with 5:45 to go in the quarter. The Griffins, meanwhile, were dead offensively, running one-shot possessions against a Raider defense that completely controlled the boards. The Griffins’ drought lasted until the 4:56 mark in the third when Workman stroked a 3-pointer to make the score 37-22 Keenan.

In the final period it was all Keenan, which led 42-26 going into the last 8 minutes of play. By the time the clock read 3:01, the Raiders had amassed a 54-38 advantage. Another Workman 3 with 2:54 remaining cut the gap to 54-41, but the Raiders proved too strong down the stretch.

FC—D’Andre Belton: 1, Keith Workman: 16, Jalyn Davis: 6, Daniel Maple: 12, Compton Walker: 2, Shadarius Hopkins: 3, Chanti Jones: 3.

KHS—Marcus Stroman: 16, Kendrick Gathers: 2, Charles Smith: 12, Eric Hopkins: 23, Jaquan Allen: 6, Javontae Davis: 2.

Tuesday night, the Griffins found their groove once more, hammering Pelion 63-47 to improve to 3-1 in region play. Workman led the Griffins with 17 points, while Maple knocked down a dozen.

The Griffins host North Central Friday, following the girls’ games, which tip at 6 p.m.

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