Boys basketball: Redmen return most experience in Region 9

Cedar returns all five starters from last year, including forward Mason Fakahua.

CEDAR CITY – When former Cedar High School Boys Basketball Coach Craig Cardon announced his resignation he did not leave the cupboard bare for incoming coach Russ Beck. The Redmen return all five starters from last year’s team.

cedar-logo“I stepped into a good situation,” said Beck. “Not only do I return experience, but also players who are eager for the season to start. They are not happy how it ended last year.”

Cedar finished just out of playoff contention last year with an overall record of 8-12 and a region record of 3-7.

Cedar's Keenan Nielson (21), Dixie vs. Cedar, Boys Basketball, St. George, Utah, Feb. 12, 2016, | Photo by Robert Hoppie,, St. George News
Cedar’s Keenan Nielson (21), Dixie vs. Cedar, Boys Basketball, St. George, Utah, Feb. 12, 2016, | Photo by Robert Hoppie,, St. George News

Backcourt: “We will run a three-guard set most of the time,” said Beck. “We plan to utilize our quickness in a fast-paced attack on offense.” Leading the charge for the Redmen is point guard Keenan Nielson, who averaged 17 points per game last year. He will be flanked by wings Ethan Boettcher and Braden Garrett. Beck said he also plans to utilize Andrew Boyer and Abe Brower in the backcourt as well.

Frontcourt: Manning the post will be Mason Fakahua and Parker Haynie. Fakahua led the team in rebounding last year and also averaged double figures in scoring (10.8). Fakahua and Haynie will be backed up by Ethan Fletcher, another of Cedar’s bigs.

“We will have a baptism by fire with our early schedule,” said Beck. “We have 12 games in December against some good teams, including several teams in our class from up north.”

In addition to the region teams, Cedar also plays crosstown rival Canyon View twice. Last year, Cedar lost both games to the Falcons – and then watched them advance to the semifinals. “That has certainly stoked our competitive juices,” said Fakahua. “We are determined to reverse that this year.”

Coach Russ Beck
Coach Russ Beck

The season starts for Cedar this Friday in the 3A Preview in Richfield. The month of December ends with four games in the Steve Hodson Cancer Classic hosted by the Redmen.

Cedar was picked to finish fourth in the Region 9 preseason poll, but also garnered three first-place votes. Only seven points separated the first four teams. “We are fast, experienced and deep,” said Beck. “Our boys play smart. I like our chances.”


CEDAR REDMEN 2016-17 BOYS BASKETBALL (all times 7 p.m. unless otherwise noted)
Friday, Dec. 2, 2016
3A-2A PREVIEW vs Grantsville 11:30 a.m.
Saturday, Dec. 3, 2016
3A-2A PREVIEW vs Tooele 3 p.m.
Tuesday, Dec. 6, 2016 at Juab
Friday, Dec. 9, 2016 at Salem Hills
Tuesday, Dec. 13, 2016 at Copper Hills
Friday, Dec. 16, 2016 vs Canyon View
Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2016 vs North Sanpete
Wednesday, Dec. 28, 2016
Thursday, Dec. 29, 2016
STEVE HODSON CANCER CLASSIC vs Spanish Fork 6:30 p.m.
Friday, Dec. 30, 2016
STEVE HODSON CANCER CLASSIC vs Stansbury 9:30 a.m.
Friday, Dec. 30, 2016
STEVE HODSON CANCER CLASSIC vs Eldorado, Nev. 6:30 p.m.
Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2017 at Canyon View
Saturday, Jan. 7, 2017 vs Richfield 5 p.m.
Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2017 at Desert Hills
Friday, Jan. 13, 2017 at Snow Canyon
Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2017 vs Pine View
Friday, Jan. 20, 2017 vs Hurricane
Wednesday, Jan. 25, 2017 at Dixie
Friday, Jan. 27, 2017 vs Desert Hills
Wednesday, Feb. 1, 2017 vs Snow Canyon
Friday, Feb. 3, 2017 at Pine View
Wednesday, Feb. 8, 2017 at Hurricane
Friday, Feb. 10, 2017 vs Dixie

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Twitter: @oldschoolag

Copyright St. George News, LLC, 2016, all rights reserved.


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