PITSBURG – Franklin Monroe got in the win column Tuesday with a 55-46 win over visiting Milton-Union after opening the year with losses to Bethel and Houston.
The Jets opened a 5-0 lead to start the contest on a triple from Kyle Ressler and layup down the middle by Zach Hyre before the Bulldogs answered.
Ressler got a put-back moments later, and then Hyre would score the next seven points to put the Jets up 14-4 … but Milton connected on a trey to close out the quarter trailing 14-7.
Franklin Monroe opened up a 23-7 advantage on triples from Ressler, Hyre and Landon Peters, prompting a timeout by Milton-Union.
The Bulldogs were determined to slow down the Jets, and they did that by going to a box and one trying to keep the ball out of Hyre’s hands.
It helped stop the bleeding, and Milton would crawl back but still trailed 27-14 at the half.
The Jets would slow down offensively in the third frame, and Milton was creeping back into the contest, cutting the margin to 34-27.
“Inexperience that’s what happened,” Franklin Monroe boys basketball coach Troy Myers said of the third quarter performance of his team that allowed Milton-Union back in the game.
In the final stanza the Bulldogs cut the lead down to one 34-33 at the 6:37 mark.
Hyre stepped forward to help pilot the plane back on course for the Jets as he converted on the next four trips down the floor, and the Jets were back in control, leading 42-33 at the 3:55 mark.
“We finally figured out we needed to get Zach the ball in the lane and take advantage of the mismatch,” Myers said. “We made good passes, and he converted, which helped us get the separation we needed.”
The Bulldogs didn’t want to go away quietly as guard Tommy Smith got hot, draining four triples to help Milton score 17 points in the quarter. But the Bulldogs eventually had to foul the Jets, who went 11-for-12 down the stretch from the charity stripe, including 6-for-6 for Ressler, to help keep them at a distance, and the Jets pulled out their first win of the season by the score of 55-46.
“We have guys on the floor that were put in situations that they haven’t been in before and just a lack of repetitions, and we made mistakes, mistakes at the varsity level you can’t make, and they (Milton-Union) pushed us to the brink … but fortunately tonight we were able to get away with it by making our free throws to get the win,” Myers said.
“We are learning on the fly, and it’s a process, and we will get better,” Myers concluded.
Hyre after scoring 30 points against Houston, scored 29 against the Bulldogs to lead Franklin Monroe. Ressler added 14 points in the win.
The Jets are at home Friday hosting Ansonia Tigers on what will be their Homecoming celebration.
Score by quarters:
FM…14…13…07…21 – 55
MU…07…07…15…17 – 46
FM (1-2, 0-1)
Kyle Ressler 14, Landon Peters 3, Zach Hyre 29, Bradey Hesler 7, Ethan Conley 2 – Totals 6-11-15/17 – 55
Tommy Smith 14, Blake Smith 18, Daniel Albaugh 2, Eric Swartz 8, Blake Ullery 4 – Totals 8-7-8/16 – 46
FM 6 (Hyre 2, Ressler 2, Peters 1, Hesler 1
MU 8 (T Smith 4, B Smith 4)