Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Sports

April 13, 2014

All-Area boys basketball team

Wildkats' Persons is MVP of 51st annual honor squad

(Continued)

Keisling scored a team-high 18.4 points per game. The 5-11 senior also averaged 5.1 rebounds and 2.1 steals.

“He put hours and hours of individual time in to make himself better and probably the biggest difference in his game this year is what he did in the weightroom from the time the [2012-13] season was over all the way through this season,” Cass coach Jon Kitchel said. “He was so strong and determined — he could get to the basket and that led to a lot of free throws. He was able to beat guys off the dribble last year, but he wasn’t able to finish like he could this year.”

Keisling ranked No. 2 in the area in free throw makes (150) and attempts (198). He shot a team-high 75.8 percent from the charity stripe and a solid 46.9 percent from the field.

“He was a big-game guy,” Kitchel added. “When the game was on the line, that was when he was at his best. That was the case when we played Western and Logansport [in the regular season] and then in the tournament.”

Keisling’s big season included a career milestone. He surpassed 1,000 career points in a sectional victory over Manchester. He is the 10th member of Cass’ 1,000-point club.

Keisling is a two-time All-Area player. He was a second-team pick last season.

SECOND TEAM

Ryan Bixler, Cass

Bixler was a key to the Kings’ high-scoring attack. The 6-0 sophomore ran the point and offered an impressive line of 13.2 points, 5.8 rebounds and 2 assists per game. He was the team’s leading rebounder and assist man.

“With Bix running the point, it allowed us to put [Blake] Hadley and Keisling out on the wings and freed them up,” Kitchel said.

“The part that is incredible to me is he shot 40 percent from the 3-point line, 56 percent from 2-point, right around 73 percent from the free throw line and then led us in rebounding and assists. His stats tell all the story about him.”

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