FHS squanders 13-0 lead, comes back to win

Published 9:14 am Wednesday, February 3, 2016

PEARL RIVER — Franklinton jumped out to a big early lead, but had to come back from 12 down before capturing a 45-37 victory over Pearl River in District 8-4A play on the road Friday.

The Lady Demons recorded the game’s first 13 points over the initial 3:49 of the contest.

Jada Thompson, who tallied six points, got the scoring started when she hit her first of two 3-pointers, giving her team the lead 50 seconds into the game.

Deja Martin, who had seven points, put up the next four. She was good on a jumper and then hit from the middle of the lane to make it 7-0 with 5:41 remaining.

India Dickerson, who posted 17 points, including five 3-pointers, knocked down a 3-pointer from the left wing at the 4:59 mark and another one with 4:11 on the clock. Franklinton had a 13-0 lead.

The teams split the next four points and the Lady Demons were up 15-2 with 3:19 left in the first quarter.

Franklinton seemed to be in good shape, but the team’s offense began to struggle. Pearl River’s defense held the Lady Demons to just six points over the next 14:22.

During that stretch, Pearl River caught and passed Franklinton, outscoring the Lady Demons, 31-6.

Pearl River tied the game at 21-21 with 2:20 left in the first half on a 3-pointer by Savannah Walker. She led all scorers with 27 points, including five 3-pointers.

The Lady Rebels took their first lead when Jayla Tillison, who finished with five points, split from the free-throw line.

Franklinton trailed 25-21 at halftime.

The Lady Rebels added eight more to their lead at the start of the second half. Anna-Belle Campbell hit for two before Walker knocked down a pair of 3-pointers to cap the run and Pearl River’s lead was up to 12 with 6:02 left in the third quarter.

But Thompson nailed a 3-pointer with 4:57 to go, igniting a 10-0 run for Franklinton to end the period.

Danaria Magee, who scored 10 points in the second half and 12 points in the game, split from the line with 4:18 to go. Just over 90 seconds later, she was good on a layup, closing the gap to 33-27. She then split free throws and Dickerson hit a 3-pointer from the right corner with 14 seconds remaining in the third quarter. The 10 unanswered points had the Lady Demons within two at 33-31 through three quarters of play.

Franklinton coach Elecia Crain said Magee played well down the stretch.

“Playing with four fouls, after I told her that there was no way she could foul out of the game, she played well,” Crain said.

But Pearl River didn’t give up the lead easily. Walker converted a 3-point play with 6:01 left in the third, but Dickerson countered with another three.

Franklinton missed the front end of a 1-and-1 with 5:27 remaining and Walker split from the line on the ensuing possession.

Then Magee and Dickerson began to take over for Franklinton.

Magee hit for two, making it 37-36. The Lady Demons missed two free throws, but were able to get the offensive rebound, which led to a 3-pointer by Dickerson.  Franklinton was back in front, 39-37, and never looked back.

Magee added to the lead by converting both ends of a 1-and-1. Then she hit for two more with 52 seconds left. Thompson made a steal and passed to Martin to close out the scoring with seven seconds left in the 45-37 win.

Crain said her club got off to a good start, but got a little relaxed. She also credited Walker on her play.

“I have to give props to their No. 33 player (Walker),” Crain said. “She was a shooter and we didn’t realize she was going to be as big of a threat as she was. So I do have to give props to her.”

Franklinton improved to 8-18 overall and 5-2 in district.

Pearl River’s Jordan Ingram and Campbell finished with two points each.