Franklin’s Ahsharri Haynesworth took a page from Tom Brady’s playbook Tuesday night.
With the Rebels leading home-standing Summit by one with five seconds to play, Haynesworth launched an 80-foot bomb on an inbound pass to Matt Thurman. Thurman made the catch on the breakaway and was fouled on the layup, hitting one of two free throws with 1.3 seconds left to seal Franklin’s 51-49 come-from-behind victory.
“It was just a great pass from Ahsharri,” Thurman said when asked how he made it look so easy.
Franklin coach Darrin Joines, on the other hand, was a little worried.
“When I saw the ball in in the air I thought, ‘What has he done?’ But it was perfect," he said. "I like Ahsharri taking the ball out there because he will go for it.”
The play was symbolic of a game that had been all Summit in the first half, with Franklin clawing back in the third quarter and six lead changes and two tie scores in the final four minutes.
The Spartans came out strong, Keaten Wade scoring nine of his team-high 16 points in the first eight minutes. Keaten Wade added five more in the second quarter, Caleb Jolley claimed six more and Jonathan Myers came off the bench to notch seven.
But things changed after the break. The Spartans, holding a 34-29 advantage going into the locker room, managed only 15 total points in the second half.
“We got some stops in the second half, more than we did in the first half,” said Joines, “and they didn’t get as many second shots. I thought we were much more intentional in the second half defensively.
Franklin’s Kate O’Neil provided offense off the glass and Darcy Doran came through to lead a…
“It took every bit of what we’ve got to beat them. They are a really good team. The Wade brothers (Destin and Keaten) are probably the best offensive rebounding finishers that we’ve played. They are just so good around the basket. If you give up an offensive rebound around them, they are probably going to score.”
It was the fourth time this season the Spartans have been in a one-possession game; three have been loses and one was at Franklin on Jan. 4 – 61-59.
“(Being close) is something we can’t be satisfied with,” said a disappointed coach Josh Goodwin of Summit. “We’ve got to be better offensively, defensively, coaching, be better everything. We’re losing too many games that come down to one possession.
“It’s not about the last shot or one play in the fourth quarter, it’s a culmination of things. In a one possession game, one possession in the first quarter is just as important.”
Reese Glover led Franklin with a game-high 19 points; Thurman finished with nine points and eight rebounds.
The win leaves Franklin (22-4, 13-1 District 11-AAA) atop the district standings with two games remaining against Dickson County and Spring Hill.
Summit (8-11, 6-8 District 11-AAA) needs to beat both Page and Dickson County to finish fourth in the district and host an opening rounding tournament game.
Franklin boys 51, Summit 49
FHS – 11 18 9 13 – 51
SHS – 19 15 2 13 – 49
FHS (51) – Reese Glover 19, Thurman 9, Kemp 8, Bruce 6, Haynesworth 6, McGraw 3.
SHS (49) – Keaten Wade 16, Myers 9, J. Werts 8, D. Wade 6, Jolley 6, K. Werts 4.
3-point goals – Franklin 7 (Glover 3, Bruce 2, Kemp, McGraw); Summit 4 (J. Werts 2, K. Wade, Myers).
Free Throws – Franklin 6-of-8 (75 percent); Summit 1-of-2 (50 percent).