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Difficult start, bevy of turnovers doom Franklin

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A challenging season didn’t get any easier Thursday night for the Franklin Community High School girls basketball team.

Roncalli handed the host Grizzly Cubs a 64-38 loss. The defeat was their sixth straight, with all six being by 19 or more points.

Franklin (6-11) has lost eight of its past nine games, overall.

Against the Rebels, the Cubs fell behind early and were virtually out of contention by the end of the first quarter.

Roncalli led 22-7 after the first period and was never seriously challenged the rest of the way.

Franklin committed 11 turnovers in the opening period and finished with 30 for the game.

Despite the loss, coach Walt Raines wasn’t discouraged by the Cubs’ effort against one of the toughest opponents on their schedule. The Rebels are 17-3 and have won seven straight games.

“We’re still doing a little growing up,” Raines said. “It was a tough game with a team as good as Roncalli, but I’m proud of the kids.

“They did a lot of good things.”

The 3-point shooting of senior Sara VanDeman was one of them.

VanDeman hit all three of her 3-point shots and finished with a team-high 13 points. She was the only Franklin player in double figures.

Although the Cubs committed many turnovers, they only had six in the second half, which Raines attributed to better communication and more patience.

“We need to keep doing those things,” Raines said. “And we’ll be getting better in the long run.”

Raines also was encouraged by the Cubs’ fourth-quarter defensive effort. Although the Rebels went to their bench for the final period, they were held scoreless in the period.

The Rebels had three players in double-figures, led by senior Bridget Perry’s 19 points. Freshman Lindsey Corsaro had 14, while junior guard Kellie Kirkhoff added 13 points.

“We forced the ball too much,” Raines said. “We can cut down on those (turnovers).”

Franklin hosts Mid-State Conference rival Martinsville on Saturday night.

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