Thursday, February 5, 2009

Rendlemen leads East Lincoln into playoffs

In four years at East Lincoln, senior Keith Rendleman has starred on the football field, on the track and on the hardwood. Now, Rendleman can just focus on one sport: basketball. 

“(Keith) is an exceptional athlete,” East Lincoln assistant basketball coach Chip Ashley said. “The amazing thing about him is that he has never been able to fully dedicate himself to basketball and he is still this good. We think his best days (in basketball) are still ahead of him.”

Rendleman, who will play basketball at UNC Wilmington next season, is averaging 22 points and 9.5 rebounds per game during the Mustangs 13-game win streak over the past two months. Rendleman, who became the school’s all-time leading scorer in January with over 1,300 points, has dominated in big game like last week’s 82-79 win over Cherryville where he had a career-best 33 points and 15 rebounds.

“We have come to expect him to do things like that,” Ashley said, of his performance last week. “I think right now, we’re focused on finishing this season strong. (Keith) will be a huge part of that.”

Rendleman and Ashley hope they can keep this going into March. The Mustangs lost in the state quarterfinals last year after a school record 24-7 mark. Right now, the Mustangs sit at 17-4, 12-1, good for first place in the Southern Piedmont going into the final week of the regular season.

 -- Observer News Services