Xenia’s Samari Curtis (with ball) scored 44 points in an 89-80 loss to First Love Christian Academy (Pa.) at Flyin’ to the Hoop last month. MARC PENDLETON / STAFF

Boys hot shot: Xenia senior Samari Curtis hits school-record 52 points

Xenia senior Samari Curtis broke a single-game record he shared by scoring 52 points in a 90-55 defeat of visiting Bellefontaine in a boys high school basketball game on Tuesday night.

The 6-foot-4 senior previously tied the Buccaneers record of 50 points as a junior at Tippecanoe. Robert Siwo of Xenia also scored 50 points against Sidney in February of 2002.

Curtis hit 20 of 28 field goals, including 7 of 13 three-pointers, and five free throws. He also had seven assists.

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Signed with the University of Cincinnati, Curtis has scored 1,945 career points as a four-year starter. With three regular-season games remaining and the upcoming postseason, he’s a cinch to be a rare area player to surpass 2,000 career points.

Locally, the 52 points ties Curtis with six other former standouts who hit that total, including Jack Hendricks of Fairmont just last season:

• Jack Hendricks, Fairmont, vs. Indianapolis Washington, Dec. 2017.

• Jarron Cumberland, Wilmington, vs. Washington Court House, Feb. 2016.

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• Luke Kennard, Franklin, vs. Mullins (S.C.), Dec. 2014.

• Tyler Niekamp, Fort Recovery, vs. Waynesfield-Goshen, 2003.

• Mike Haley Jr., Dunbar, vs. Meadowdale, 1988.

• Robert Patterson, Colonel White, vs. Hamilton Taft, 1974.

Charlie Coles’ 65 points he scored for Bryan (Yellow Springs) in 1959 is the area record, although that isn’t listed among Ohio High School Athletic Association records.

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The OHSAA lists only players with 2,200 or more career points. Tops of area members in that club is No. 2 Luke Kennard of Franklin (2,977). Other area players are Cumberland of Wilmington (2,408), Matt Witt of Bethel (2,366), Nathan Lessing of Fairlawn (2,223) and Mike Cross of Franklin Monroe (2,202).

Curtis had 16 points in the first quarter and finished with seven 3-pointers. He leads the Greater Western Ohio Conference in scoring (33.3) and was the GWOC’s scoring leader the last two seasons, also. Jate Bradley added 14 points for the Bucs.

Bellefontaine, of the Central Buckeye Conference, fell to 4-14.

Curtis led all area scorers this season before burning Bellefontaine, twice hitting 47 points. Also going for 40 or more this season were Amari Davis of Trotwood-Madison (43), Sidney’s Andre Gordon (42) and Shaunn Monroe of Fairborn (41).

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Ironically, Curtis was coming off his lowest output, 19 points in an 80-68 loss at Fairmont. However, that was the only dip in a mostly red-hot last 10 games in which he’s scored 40 or more six times and is averaging 38.2 points.

Among area girls, Tecumseh senior Corinne Thomas owns a best 51 points against London early in December. She scored 45 in another, same as GWOC scoring leader Mickayla Purdue of Springfield.

Mikala Morris of Kenton Ridge has scored 40 or more three times this season, including a high of 44.

Xenia (11-8) hosts Trotwood-Madison (15-2) on Friday.

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