The Franklin-Simpson Wildcats took the fight right at the Bowling Green Purples but the Purples’ ability to get to the free throw line frequently in the fourth quarter was the difference as Franklin-Simpson came up on the short end, 68-63.
“We played hard!!,” Wildcats’ head coach Dee Spencer said. “We are going to have to have better shot selection in close games.”
Gabe Jones had a strong 1st Quarter for the Wildcats as he dropped a 3-pointer to score five points along with four points from Jalen Briscoe, who made all four of his free throws. Deuce Bailey led the Purples with six points with two points each from Gavin Lightning and Mason Ritter as Franklin-Simpson trailed 10-9 at the end of one.
Briscoe made five of his six free throws, buried a 3-pointer to score 10 points in the 2nd Quarter with Gavin Dickerson also knocking down a 3-pointer. O.J. Gamble scored a bucket with Demarcus Hogan adding a free throw. Bowling Green kept pace by making four 3-pointers in the period with Bailey making three and one from M.J. Wardlow as Franklin-Simpson trailed 28-25 at halftime.
Another big quarter for Briscoe as he made seven of his 11 free throws to score 11 points in the 3rd quarter. Hogan got going as well as he connected on two 3-pointers to score seven points. Bailey made another 3-pointer, his fourth of the game, for six points with Braylon Banks and Wardlow each scoring four points as the game was tied at 44-44 at the end of the third.
With the game on the line, the Wildcats played fearlessly in the 4th Quarter as Jones, who made his second 3-pointer of the game along with two free throws, scored nine points. Hogan made a traditional three-point play to score seven points with free throws from Briscoe and Mathias Dickerson. Franklin-Simpson got to the free throw line six times while the Purples got to the free throw line 19 times with Bailey and Ritter, who scored 11 points in the quarter, each making five of their six free throws. The 14-5 scoring differential from the line was the difference as a very stingy Franklin-Simpson gave Bowling Green all they could handle but came up short 68-63.
“”If we can compete like that every game, we have a chance to be really good!,” Spencer said.
Jalen Briscoe led the Wildcats with a team highs of 27 points and seven rebounds. DeMarcus Hogan scored 15 points with four rebounds and Gabe Jones added 14 points. Gavin and Mathias Dickerson along with O.J. Gamble each had three rebounds.
Deuce Bailey led all scorers with a game high of 29 points with 29 points with Mason Ritter and M.J. Wardlow each adding 13 points.
Franklin-Simpson will play their second 13th District game of the season at the Logan County Cougars on Friday night. Tip off of the boys game of the girls/boys doubleheader is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.