The Keota boys basketball team grabbed a district title last night, squeaking out a win over BGM.
Keota won 57-52 but it wasn’t an easy win by far.
The first quarter was low scoring, and defensively stout. Keota got out to a five point lead, but just as soon as it looked like they were going to run away, BGM was right there to battle back. Keota led 10-8 after the first. The second quarter was much of the same with a bit higher scoring, but Keota jumped out to a lead, and BGM battled back to take a one point lead, only to lose it to a three ball from Keota. The teams batted around the one point lead for the rest of the second quarter before the first half finally ended, and Keota led by one 22-21.
The third quarter was a quick one, Keota got some early shots to extend their lead all the way to seven, but that didn’t stop BGM, who once again came back with 10 points in the quarter from Jake Tibbits to not only tie the Eagles, but take a seven point lead. Keota stopped the bleeding with a layup and battled back to within two at the end of three 39-37.
The Eagles finally regained the lead in the fourth quarter, and held on to it. Kolton Greiner drove to the basket to make his own points, and huge free throws down the stretch from Zach Mousel and Isaiah Hahn put the lead out of reach, and Keota took the win 57-52.
Head coach Dan Stout said this game was a result of familiar teams playing each other for a third time.
“Both teams just knew what each other were going to do, and they played like it, ” Stout said. “The kids played hard on both side, and I thought that the BGM kids played their hearts out, and I thought our kids did to. We were lucky to come away with the win, and hitting the big free throws down the stretch to get the big victory; I was very proud of our kids effort.”
Luke Lyle led the way with a double-double for Keota of 16 points and 10 rebounds, while Greiner came in with 14 and Nate Owen added nine.
Koeta moves on to the sub-state championship on Saturday, when they take on Van Buren who was a 52-47 winner over Pekin.
We’ll have that game right here on AM and FM KCII and KCIIradio.com.