PITSBURG – Franklin Monroe built a 30-12 halftime lead over visiting Covington and overcame a 2-point third quarter by exploding for 19 in the fourth to hold off the Buccaneers 51-35 in Cross County Conference play.
Both teams entered the game with 6-1 records with the Buccs undefeated in league play while the Jets had one loss.
Franklin Monroe jumped all over Covington in the first quarter, going up 14-6, and then expanded the lead in the second quarter with 16 points to lead 30-12 at the half.
The Lady Jets showed what kind of team they can be when they are clicking on all cylinders.
They showed great patience and executed their offense to precision in the first half while also playing with great energy on the defensive end to hold the Buccaneers to just 12 points.
Corina Conley and Kennedy Morris both scored 5 points each in the first quarter, and Audrey Cable added 4 points.
Senior Tara Goubeaux drained a triple to start the second quarter to give the Jets a 17-6 lead.
At the 3:35 mark Conley connected an 18-footer to put the Jets up 25-10, and moments later Belle Cable added a triple as the Jets held an 18-point advantage at the half, 30-12.
“These are some of the most coachable kids. They executed our offense and got the looks we wanted. That’s huge in a game like this,” Franklin Monroe girls basketball coach Abbey Moore said.
Covington isn’t a team that rolls over, and the Buccs came out after the break more aggressive on the defensive end and attacked the basket, scoring the first 6 points.
Franklin Monroe lacked the energy it started game with while rushing its offense and settling for bad shots.
It took four minutes until the Jets put any points on the scoreboard in the third quarter on two free throws by Chloe Brumbaugh, and by that time the lead had diminished to 32-20.
Covington held FM scoreless from the field and cut the margin to under double digits, trailing 32-24 heading into the final stanza.
“Covington is a great ball team, and they saw Audrey was kind of tired and pressured us in the third quarter. With the kind of effort she has to give defensively, and then run the point on offense, that takes a lot of energy so I give them credit pressuring us, and it paid off,” Moore said
Franklin Monroe rediscovered the game it played in the first half, executing in the half court and pushing the ball out on the break with Audrey Cable doing damage, scoring 8 points in the open floor.
Brumbaugh scored 7 points in the final quarter as the Jets pulled away from Covington to win it 51-35.
“We’ve had a couple of game this year where the third quarter has been our demise, and I know people get worried,” Moore said. “But I believe in these girls, and I’m not worried because they really want to win, and I know they are going to come back out and compete.
“The resiliency these girls have shown is great, and they really got it going again in the fourth quarter because they have that determination,” Moore said.
“I think for our game on Thursday maybe we won’t go into the locker room and stay out on the floor. We come out so strong in the first half, and I think at the break we have a let-down with our adrenaline going away during the break,” Moore added.
“We played three good quarters, and it was fun at times … but once we decide to put four good quarters together not only is it going to be a lot fun, it’s going to be good basketball to watch as well,” Moore concluded.
Covington fell to 6-2 on the year and 4-1 in the conference while Franklin Monroe improved to 7-1 and 4-1 in the CCC. The Jets will travel to Casstown on Thursday in another key contest with Miami East, who is 6-3 overall and 4-0 in the league.
Score by quarters
COV … 06 … 06 … 12 … 11 – 35
FM ….. 14 … 16 … 02 … 19 – 29
Covington – Long 2, Whiteman 22, Hamilton 4, Crowell 3, Lyle 2, Christian 2
Totals – 1-16-0/1 – 35
Franklin Monroe – Chloe Brumbaugh 9, Belle Cable 3, Corina Conley 11, Kennedy Morris 9, Tara Goubeaux 3, Audrey Cable 16
Totals – 5-15-6/10 – 51
COV – 1(Crowell)
FM – 5(Brumbaugh 1, B. Cable 1, Conley 1, Morris 1, Goubeaux 1)