The Keene High girls’ basketball team kept it close for more than a half and stayed within shouting distance much of the way, but powerful Merrimack High was too much for the Blackbirds Friday night at Purbeck Gymnasium.

The 14-1 Tomahawks, whose only loss was to undefeated Bishop Guertin, beat the Birds 45-34. Maddison Miner led Keene with 12 points, while Aubrey Mitchell scored 7 and Kaitlyn Lee Lemnah added 6. The Birds trailed 11-10 after the first quarter, and only 24-17 at halftime. However, Merrimack gradually opened up a 39-24 lead by the end of three quarters.

Keene fell to 4-10 in losing its fourth straight, with a road game at Nashua North up next Tuesday.