PITSBURG – The Franklin Monroe Jets overcame an early 4-0 deficit and then went ahead by as many as 17 points on their way to a 46-36 Cross County Conference win over Miami East on senior night.
The Viking held a brief 4-0 lead early in the first quarter, and the home crowd, who was standing until the first basket made, was getting restless.
Senior Zach Cable hit a 15-foot baseline jumper at 4:13 much to the relief of the FM fans.
Ethan Conley followed up with a deep corner 3-ball to give the Jets the lead 5-4, and then senior Cole McGlinch added a bucket of his own on the interior to push the advantage to 7-4 at 2:42.
East got it to 7-6 … but Conley’s triple from the top of the key ended the first quarter scoring with the Jets up 10-6.
Senior Bryce Filbrun pushed the FM lead to 11 on a triple at 4:54 to go up 17-6, and the Jets went up 19-10 at the half.
Senior Kyle Ressler came out after the break firing in a trifecta as the Jets widened the gap between them and Miami East, leading by 17 points with 50 seconds left in the third quarter, 35-18.
Miami East jumped out of its 1-2-2 zone into a 1-3-1 half-court trap in the final stanza to try and rattle FM. After a few possessions it seemed to yield some benefits as the Vikings got hot from beyond the arch, making four triples in the period and cutting the deficit to 6 points before Conley’s short jumper made it 39-31 to stop the run at the 3:55 mark.
The Jets settled down and showed poise against the trap, making good decisions, moving the basketball and staying patient until they got a good shot and eventually went on to record a 46-36 senior night win.
“I think we handled their 1-3-1 trap well thanks to Dayton Christian who played us in a 1-3-1 in the fourth quarter on Tuesday. We didn’t fair very well that night so we came right back in on Wednesday and said how are we going to attack a 1-3-1, what do we want to do, how patient do we want to be? For two days that’s all we really did. I thought we controlled the ball a lot better tonight than we did on Tuesday. We did a really good job finding guys in open areas and making sure we weren’t in a rush, and it paid off for us tonight against Miami East,” Franklin Monroe boys basketball coach Troy Myers said.
It would be a good night for the seven senior boys players: Kyle Ressler, Bryce Filbrun, Matthew Williams, Bryce Robison, Zach Cable, Cole McGlinch and Parker Hesler.
“I’m really happy for our seniors. We have seven really special guys. One who is brand new this year and a few who have played all four years. One who was cut, came back and is finding some redemption. I think it’s a beautiful story for these guys. The win tonight capitalizes on something they have earned; they know nothing is given. I thought they earned it tonight with their play, not just because it was senior night,” Myers said.
Conley led the Jets with 24 points as Franklin Monroe concluded the regular season at 14-8 overall and 10-2 in the Cross County Conference to finish in second place for the second year in a row.
The Jets will be back in action in the first round of the Ohio High School Athletic Association Division IV Troy sectional basketball tournament at 7:30 p.m. Friday against Southeastern.
Score by quarters
ME … 06 … 04 … 10 … 16 – 36
FM … 10 … 09 … 16 … 11 – 46
Miami East – Helm 8, Kearns 1, Taynor 4, Hudson 5, Rutledge 14, Bertsch 4;
Totals 7-4-7/10 – 36
Franklin Monroe – Kyle Ressler 3, Bryce Filbrun 6, Zach Cable 4, Cole McGlinch 4, Parker Hesler 5, Ethan Conley 24 – Totals 6-10-8/11 – 46