For The Beacon
In order for a team to have success it must have a player who is willing to go above and beyond for the betterment of the team. In this week’s senior spotlight, we showcase three who did just that.
For Greenup County it was the season of what might have been. Regardless of the story, two of the Musketeers’ seniors helped lead their team to a 21-10 record before falling to Lewis County in the opening round of districts. Brady Nelson and Griffin Keeton were at the opposite end of the statistical sheet in many categories.
Nelson led the Musketeers in scoring (20.4 ppg) while orchestrating the offense. Many nights Nelson recorded near or over 10 assists per outing while leaving his head coach watching in disbelief.
“Nelson is one of the best passers I’ve ever coached at any level,” former Greenup County coach Robert Amis said. “He was asked to carry the scoring load for us over the past two years. He really matured and adapted to a leadership role.”
Nelson also eclipsed the 1,000 point plateau on Jan. 11 at the Greenhouse, a feat he called “his favorite memory of the game.”
Nelson said a special part of the game he will always cherish is the bond he formed with Amis while his funniest moment was playing 1-on-1 with team manager Johnny Craft.
A player that Nelson often looked for on the court was Keeton who seemingly found himself wide open as defenses closed out on Nelson or fellow senior, Rod Dryden. Another reason Nelson sought out Keeton, he did not miss very often. Keeton finished with 68.1% field goal percentage, good for a tie for sixth in the state.
“Griff is one the best teammates I’ve ever coached,” Amis said. “He’s what you think of when you say student-athlete. He was top-10 in FG% all year in the state.”
Keeton was a player night in and night out who averaged only 5.5 points a night but collected stats that did not show up in the box score. Keeton led the team in charges and was a player willing to do whatever would make the team better in the end.
Although not known for his words, Keeton was always one who was good for a joke here and there, especially with his coach.
“Always giving coach Amis a hard time and acting like him and Johnny are related,” Keeton said of his favorite memory. “But the thing I will miss the most is the bond I made with my teammates.”
While Greenup County graduates five seniors this season, rival Raceland had only one, Gunnur Lewis. However, Lewis was not your prototypical senior as it was his first year playing high school basketball. But that did not hold back a player head coach Bob Trimble labels as an “athlete” by position.
“Gunnur is a tremendous competitor with the knack and instincts for making winning plays in the biggest moments of the game,” Trimble said. Lewis was well known around the state for his skills in football and track but found a way to bring the best of both to the hardwood to help lead the Rams to an 18-9 season.
Lewis, who had a knack for finding his way into the endzone for the Rams, wasted little time securing himself a starting position on the hardwood with his ability to not only score and rebound, but an energy that Trimble said often propelled his squad.
“Being a tremendous athlete, Gunnur came in with a humble attitude to do whatever he could to help our team win,” Trimble said. “He never took a possession off in practice or games. He was willing to take whatever role needed for our team’s success. I enjoyed coaching him.”
Lewis credited the Rams’ Derby Classic win as his favorite moment but said his funniest moment was with a coach, not a player.
“I air balled a shot in practice and hit Coach Floyd in the face,” Lewis said.