February 8, 2010

Four In A Row For FSU's Justin Keenan

Big Rapids, Mich. - Ferris State University junior forward/center Justin Keenan has been honored yet again as the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) Men's Basketball North Division Player of the Week, marking the fourth consecutive week he's claimed the recognition.

The award was announced Monday (Feb. 8) and Keenan was chosen again after averaging 27.5 points and 6.5 rebounds in two league home contests at Jim Wink Arena.

Keenan scored a personal career-high 35 points on 13-of-19 shooting (.684) and grabbed seven boards with three assists and three steals in FSU's impressive 86-77 triumph Saturday (Feb. 6) over defending NCAA-II National Champion and nationally 19th-ranked Findlay. His play fueled the Bulldogs to only their second victory against the Oilers in the last 45 years and Ferris' first-ever win versus Findlay in the 11-year history of the current Wink Arena.

Additionally, Keenan also had a team-high 20 points with six rebounds and two assists in Thursday's (Feb. 4) contest against Hillsdale. He finished with 55 points, 13 rebounds, five assists and three steals in the two games combined.

He notched his 1,400th career point in the win over Findlay and also moved into second place on the school's career free throws list as he made his 500th free throw (500-668) against the Oilers.  In 76 career contests to date, Keenan has recorded 1,405 points and 530 rebounds while starting 73 career games. He's only 29 free throws shy of passing former Bulldog standout Dennis Johnson (528, 1969-73) to become the school's all-time leader in made free throws.

Keenan's 35-point effort versus the Oilers topped his previous career-high of 33 points set against Olivet last season (11/25/08) and it marked the most points scored by a Bulldog player in a game during the eight-year tenure of head coach Bill Sall.  The last FSU player to score more than 35 points in a single contest came in 2001-02 (Jan. 19) when Marcus Wallace totaled 40 points in a 86-85 league overtime home loss to rival Grand Valley State.

This week's selection follows the same recognition each of the last three weeks for Keenan and represents the sixth time in his career he's received the GLIAC weekly award.

Following this past week's effort, Keenan continues to lead the league in scoring (20.0 ppg.) and ranks third in offensive rebounds (2.9 pg.), third in field goal percentage (.566), tied for sixth in total rebounding (6.6 rpg.) and 10th in steals (1.4 spg.).  Additionally, his 153 made free throws and 219 total attempts this campaign both represent league highs as he's shot nearly 100 free throws more than any other player in the conference this season.

Keenan has reached double-figure scoring in 20 of 21 games this season along with 71 of 76 career outings. The 2009-10 Preseson All-GLIAC selection has tallied 10 points or more in 48 of his last 50 contests.

Keenan led the GLIAC in scoring (20.2 ppg.) while ranking second in offensive rebounds (3.4 rpg.), fourth in rebounding (7.3 rpg.) and fourth in field goal percentage (.546) in 2008-09. He also made and attempted more free throws (180-237) than any other player in the league last season for the second-straight year. Keenan reached double-figure scoring in 24 of his 25 games and totaled 20 points or more in 14 outings a year ago, including a then career-high 33 points versus Olivet (Nov. 25), en route to earning team MVP honors for the second-straight year.

This year, Keenan was named a NCAA Division II Preseason All-America selection by three different sources, including being tabbed to the Division II Bulletin “Super 16” Preseason squad. He also claimed acclaim from both The Sporting News and Basketball Times. Keenan was honored last season as a National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Division II All-Midwest District Second Team pick along with a Daktronics All-Midwest Region Second Team and All-GLIAC North Division First Team selection. He became the 26th player in school history to notch his 1,000th career point in this year's season opener at Lewis (Nov. 15).

Behind the play of Keenan, the Bulldogs have presently won seven of their last eight contests and 10 of their past 14 games overall.  FSU currently owns a 13-8 overall record and resides in sole possession of second place in the GLIAC North Division with a 11-5 conference mark.

The Bulldogs will venture to Michigan's Upper Peninsula for a pair of league road contests this week.  FSU opens up a four-game GLIAC road swing by visiting Michigan Tech on Thursday (Feb. 11) for a 7:30 p.m. (EST) tipoff in Houghton and will then face Northern Michigan on Saturday (Feb. 13) in a 1 p.m. (EST) game at Marquette.

Both of this week's games can be heard live locally on WBRN 1460 AM & 107.7 FM.  Live internet statistics and live audio/video pay-per-view webcasts will also be offered for both contests.  Visit www.ferrisstatebulldogs.com for all available links.