Franklin Co. turns back North Pike’s Jaguars

Published 6:00 am Monday, December 20, 2004

MEADVILLE — Twenty-eight points by Wesley Brown and someoutstanding team defense from the Franklin County Bulldogs was morethan the North Pike Jaguars could handle Friday night in Bulldogarena as Franklin collected a dramatic 61-42 victory against theirdistrict rivals.

In the varsity girls game, Franklin aced North Pike 65-52 behindfreshman Shereka Hunt’s 19 points and 10 rebounds.

The Bulldogs (5-3, 2-0) began the key Region 7-3A contestwithout the services of starting senior point guard senior DeandreaCameron, due to a high ankle sprain he sustained against Natchezlast Saturday.

Franklin regrouped without their leader and raced out to a 14-9lead before North Pike could bat an eye. The Jaguars battled backin the second frame and cut their deficit to 34-31 at the half.North Pike (2-8, 0-2) used four Franklin County turnovers intransition during the last 1:18 of the second quarter to shockFranklin with a 7-2 run.

“We got flat outplayed in the first half,” said Bulldog generalChris Jordan about his team’s poor second-quarter finish. “They outhustled us at the end.”

Sensing Jordan’s anger, the Bulldogs came out of the locker roomand outscored North Pike 17-3 in the third frame. The Bulldogs gotan added eight points from their 6-5 junior center Wesley Brown inthe fourth frame for the final margin of victory.

“I felt in the second half we matched their (North Pike’s)effort,” addressed Jordan after the game. “We stopped fouling anddid a better job on both sides of the ball.”

Jordan’s Bulldogs were led by Brown’s career-high 28 points, 11rebounds, and two steals. On the backboards, 6-4 postmen MarcusTillman and DeAndre Davis each collected 12 points and gatheredeight rebounds apiece. Senior guard Jasper O’Quinn added sevenassists and three steals.

For the Jaguars, Landon Morgan led North Pike with 14 points,three assists, and a steal. Erik Robinson chipped in with 12 pointsand five rebounds.

In the girls contest, the Lady Bulldogs (8-1,2-0) marched out to a comfortable 37-28 lead at the half, behindthe smart and direct shooting from the Hunt girls, Vikki andShereka. Franklin rolled to a 45-36 advantage after three periodsof play, before finally pulling away with the victory in the finalframe.

“We just didn’t get any production out of our post players,”said longtime North Pike girls coach John Stephens. “Give FranklinCounty credit. They have a good team, and right now I would have tosay they are the favorites in the division.”

Stephens Lady Jaguars (6-4, 1-1) got a team-high 16 points fromsenior guard Jessica Turner. Senior guard/forward Britta Stephensadded 15 points, seven rebounds, and four steals.

For Franklin, senior point guard Tamera Gant added 13 points andthree steals. She also dished out five assists. Senior forwardAshley Weathersby added 10 points, six boards and three steals.

North Pike will next play in the Wesson Tournament followingChristmas break, beginning Dec. 28. Franklin will resume play Dec.30 in the Lawrence County Invitational.