The 67 points the Franklin boys basketball team produced Friday were the result of two games,
Of the dozen programs invited to the Carroll Shootout, the Grizzly Cubs had the longest distance to travel. They ran into a pair of northern Indiana buzz-saws, losing 53-35 to Carroll (Allen) in the morning and 64-32 to Munster in the afternoon.
Both games took place at
East Noble High School as part of a six-game showcase. Six other contests were played at Columbia City High School.
All 12 teams are slated to play two more games today at Carroll.
For the Cubs it’s an opportunity to atone for a day in which turnovers and downright frigid shooting percentages plagued them against bigger, stronger and more-seasoned competition.
Franklin junior guard Cameron Smith, Johnson County’s leading scorer with a 25.2 scoring norm, sprained his right ankle early in the second quarter of the opener and scored a total of six points in the two games.
Smith’s injury occurred at 6:52 of the second with his team trailing Carroll, 17-9. He wouldn’t return for the remainder of the game against the Chargers, but he played against Munster despite having limited mobility.
“We’re trying to build on small steps. We ran some positive plays against Munster in the first quarter and got some good minutes out of Austin Terrell. Andrew Hartkorn is finding more things he can do. Nik Welch had some pretty good minutes before he got in foul trouble; and Cameron is trying, but obviously not at his best,” first-year Franklin coach Brad Dickey said.
“All of our guards are young, and we’re trying to get a whole lot of experience crammed into just a couple of days.”
An inability to take care of the basketball cost Franklin dearly in the morning match-up against the Chargers, whose height and athleticism factored greatly in the Cubs’ seven first-quarter turnovers.
For the game the Cubs committed 23.
Kyle Mallers, Carroll’s smooth 6-foot-7 junior, scored 11 of his game-high 15 points in a row as the Chargers quickly went from being ahead 4-2 early on to being in total control, 15-2.
“We were very good at several things, and then we were really poor at a few others. We didn’t handle the ball well at the timeline. That was a little disappointing. It’s disappointing when your errors lead to layups,” Dickey said. “But we saw progress.
“Our defense improved dramatically. (Carroll) is an incredibly powerful team that we guarded a little bit and got rebounds on several occasions that were very good for our team.”
Terrell, a 5-9 sophomore guard, came off the bench to lead Franklin with nine points. Welch had eight and tied Mallers’ for rebounding honors with six.
The tournament format called for the Grizzly Cubs to take the court a mere two hours later against a Munster squad that had yet to play a game Friday.
Franklin hung tough through one period, trailing 12-11, but couldn’t keep close due to shoddy field-goal shooting — 12 of 49 (.245) and only four 3-pointers in 26 attempts — and getting pounded on the glass to the tune of 34-14.
The 6-3 Hartkorn led the Cubs with 10 points and five boards. Terrell earned a start against the Mustangs and responded with nine points.
Placing third of three teams in Pool D, Franklin takes on the Pool C third-place squad (East Noble) at noon today at Carroll. It then will take part in either the 11th-place game at 6 p.m. or the ninth-place game at 8.
Dickey looks forward to whatever challenges are ahead.
“We travel well, and we have good kids. We’re going to enjoy this trip,” he said. “We enjoyed getting here, and hopefully we get a couple of better games under our belt.”