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Spartan men drop another

SWCC falls to talented Southeastern CC

BURLINGTON – A Southwestern men’s basketball team in search of a win couldn’t find one Tuesday against Southeastern Community College, falling 82-77.

The Blackhawks mark the sixth consecutive team the Spartans have lost to that has been ranked or receiving votes in the NJCAA Div. I or Div. II polls.

Southwestern started the game slowly on offense after a quality practice the day before, according to head coach Blake Peterson.

“Things got a little stagnant for us,” said Peterson of the early going. “We weren’t moving the ball. We weren’t cutting, so I kind of got after them a little bit.”

SWCC went into the locker room trailing by five at the half, but played with more enthusiasm in the second half.

“(We) went back and forth for the majority of the second half,” said Peterson. “I thought we played a lot better. From where we were going into break to where we played last night and what we’ve been doing on the court, ... hopefully things are going up.”

The Spartans cut the Blackhawks lead to three points with about six minutes left to go in regulation, but Southeastern scored seven quick points and pushed it out to 10.

The 10-point lead held as the hosting Blackhawks held off the Spartans the rest of the way.

Gatdoar Keuth led the Spartans with 17 points over the course of the contest while D’Marqueyon Whittington and Chad Moran were the next leading scorers with 15 and 12 points, respectively.

As far as the string of losses go, Peterson is taking solace in the quality of losses and the improved play in the first contest out of the winter break.

“I would wager that this is probably the hardest schedule that’s been put together by Southwestern basketball,” Peterson said. “That’s not taking anything away from any team, but we’ve got No. 5 coming up here and then No. 20.”

UP NEXT – Southwestern (10-6, 0-2) jumps into the heat of conference play with another ranked opponent in Kirkwood (13-2, 3-0), who is No. 5 in the most recent NJCAA Div. II poll. The Spartans host the Eagles Saturday at 3 p.m.

Southeastern 82, Southwestern 77

SWCC (77) — 31 46

SECC (82) — 36 46

SWCC (FG FT PTS) — Totals — 27 11-15 77. Gatdoar Kueth 7 2-4 17, D’Marqueyon Whittington 5 1-1 15, Chad Moran 3 6-7 12, Ryan Warren 4 0-0 11, Noah Persich 3 1-2 9, Rasheed Barze 3 1-1 8, Trevonte Diggs 1 0-0 3, Jordan Doss 1 0-0 2. 3-point goals — 12 (Whittington 4, Warren 3, Persich 2, Kueth 1, Diggs 1, Barze 1). Assists – 14 (Warren 5, Barze 3, Whittington 2, Persich 1, Moran 1, Kueth 1). Steals – 5. Team fouls — 22. Fouled out — Kueth, Moran, Persich.

SOUTHEASTERN (FG FT PTS) — Totals — 32 15-29 82. AJ Cox 11 2-2 25, Tyler Maye 7 3-6 18, Marquis Collins 4 2-6 11, Alier Riak 4 2-6 11, DeAndre Barton 1 6-8 8, Deion Reliford 3 0-0 7, Steven Cager 2 0-0 4. 3-point goals —5 (Collins 1, Maye 1, Cox 1, Riak 1, Reliford 1). Rebounds – 48 (Collins 10, Cox 8, Reliford 7). Assists –11 (Maye 4). Blocks – 1. Steals – 10 (Cox 3). Team fouls — 17. Fouled out — None.

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