Trojans seek improved conference recordKeokuk beat Fairfield in all three matchups last year
The Fairfield boys’ basketball team didn’t have an answer for Kendall Clark last season.
The 6-foot-8-inch senior was dominant in all three of Keokuk’s victories over Fairfield, including the first round of the playoffs. He led the Chiefs in points in each game and was an effective rebounder down low.
The problem for Keokuk is Clark, along with three other senior starters from last year’s team, is now gone. This year, it will be the Trojans with the size advantage under the basket. Landon Gamrath, who stands at 6 feet 9 inches, and the 6-foot-6-inch Vince Horras will need to control rebounding and stay out of foul trouble in order for Fairfield to grab its second conference win of the season.
Fort Madison currently is in first place in the Southeast Conference, with the Trojans coming in second. The other three teams have records below the .500 mark. Keokuk (2-3) is 0-2 in conference play, with close losses against Fort Madison and Mt. Pleasant. Keokuk junior Jonny Dahl and a solid supporting cast will be hoping to take down the Trojans yet again.
“Keokuk is very athletic with a lot of good guards,” Fairfield head coach Tyler Miklo said. “They will be a very difficult challenge for us.”
Fairfield (4-2) is coming out of winter break having already matched last season’s win total. The Trojans have a tough schedule coming up, with another conference game against Fort Madison and a road trip to Mediapolis. Fairfield also will host Danville, which has made deep trips into the state playoffs the last two years. A win over the Chiefs would be a huge step forward.
“I am hoping the guys come out energized and focused,” Miklo said. “Every game in the conference is going to be tough, so if we can get one on the road it would be great for our confidence.”
Another key to Fairfield winning will be the consistent play of junior guard Federico Ferretti. Ferretti is one of the best players in the conference, placing in the top five in scoring with 98 points through six games so far this season.