KERENS–The Kerens Bobcats fell to the Blooming Grove Lions twice over a four-day stretch, with the latest loss coming Dec. 31 after the two teams met at the Kiwanis Classic tournament in Corsicana.
Kerens finished in fourth place at the Kiwanis Classic at Navarro College, where they whipped Frost, 81-26, but lost Dec. 28 to Blooming Grove, 69-46. The Bobcats then lost a third-period lead on New Year’s Eve at home, falling again to the Lions, 56-52.
Both teams struggled to score early in the Dec. 31 game, finishing the first period in a 6-6 tie. Blooming Grove led 16-12 late in the second period before a Muziq Gunnell three-point play got the Bobcats within 18-16. Hunter Crawford’s offensive rebound and bucket then tied the game at 18. A quick succession of baskets ended the first half, capped by Gunnell’s offensive rebound followed by a put-back at the halftime horn which tied the game at 22.
Gunnell, who led Kerens with 23 points, drained a three-pointer with 6:30 left in the third period that gave Kerens a 27-24 lead. The Bobcats then took their biggest lead of the game at 34-28 behind baskets from Crawford and Gunnell, along with Nehemiah Massey and Treylyn Lindsey free throws.
Blooming Grove seized the lead again late in the third period, leading by as many as four points. Officials disallowed a Lane Lynch basket which would’ve tied the game at 43 to end the third period, causing controversy in the Kerens crowd.
The foul-filled affair continued in the fourth period with Blooming Grove going up 49-41. Kerens got within 53-52 on a Gunnell basket with 1:23 left in the game, but the Lions converted three free throws down the stretch to cement the win.
Besides Gunnell, Kerens was led by Massey and Antonio McAdams, who scored seven points apiece. Mykel Lattimore added six points, Lindsey tallied five points and Crawford totaled four points.