FHS Basketball: Lady Warriors Gear Up For SCT With Win Over North Star Academy, 54-38

EYES ON THE PRIZE – Precious Wheeler goes up for a shot during the February 9 game against North Star Academy.

Sophomore Precious Wheeler recorded a double-double in the Franklin High School girls’ basketball team’s 54-38 win over North Star Academy on February 9.

Wheeler scored 12 points and pulled down 13 rebounds while recording four blocks during the game.

Two other players – Freshman Gianna Mattia and Junior Iyanna Cotten – also scored in the double-digits.

The game got off to a slow start, a point not missed by Lady Warriors’ head coach, Audrey Miller.

Slow or not, Franklin walked off the court at the end of the first quarter holding a comfortable 12-5 lead.

North Star woke up in the second quarter, outscoring the Lady Warriors 14-9. Still, Franklin headed to the locker rooms with a 23-19 lead.

“I think we started out slow, don’t think we really had the energy,” Taylor said. “I think after our talk at halftime we came back, followed the game plan a little bit better, settled in, started getting some steals, started getting some buckets that helped us out.”

The Lady Warriors outscored North Star 14-10 in the third quarter, extending their lead to 27-29 at the buzzer.

The final quarter was all Franklin, who outscored their opponent 17-9.

What did Taylor say to the team that brought them around?

“That we were pressuring up too much and giving them too many drives to the basket, causing a scramble and then we start fouling,” she said. “So I made them all step back a little bit, to help and support that drive a little bit, and then have our posts be able to stay in and grab our boards.”

The lady Warriors finished the game with 32 rebounds and 13 assists.

Taylor’s mantra has always been defense, but this year, she said, she’s had to modify that.

“Any time we make buckets, we have energy, so that’s where our energy came from,” she said. “I wish it was off of defense, but this year it’s been an offensive-minded team.”

This game, Taylor said, was a tune-up for the upcoming Somerset County Tournament, for which the Lady Warriors are seeded 5th. That got them a bye in the second round, but they will play 12th-seeded Immaculata at home on February 11. The winner of that game goes on to face 4th-seeded Hillsborough on February 14 in Hillsborough.

“This was to kinda get us ready for Saturday so we didn’t have to practice for the rest of the week,” Taylor said. “By the time you get to February, you just want games.”

Cotten led all Warrior scorers with 13 points. She also pulled down eight rebounds, and had six assysts and six steals.

Mattia recorded 10 points and had a rebound, three assists and two steals.

Freshman Alissa Myers recorded eight points and a rebound.

Sisters Alyssa and Tiffany Pecorella scored four points each. Alyssa, a Senior, pulled down a rebound and Tiffany, a Junior, recorded two assists and a steal.

Rounding out the scoring was Junior Morgan Lewis, who scored two points and had six rebounds and an assist.

With the win, the Lady Warriors improve to 10-11 overall and 7-5 in the Skyland Conference.

Here are some scenes from the game:

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