The Franklin Rebels boys’ basketball team successfully defended home court against the Ravenwood Raptors 70-54 Tuesday night.
 
“It was a frustrating outcome,” said Ravenwood head coach Patrick Whitlock. “We are a team in transition right now with one new guy in our lineup tonight and several more coming.”
 
“Any win in this district is a good win,” said Franklin head coach Jason Tigert. “You have to be able to protect your home court, and we were able to do that tonight versus Ravenwood.”
 
With this win, Franklin moves to 4-2 on the season and 1-1 in district play.
 
It was a tight defensive battle in the first quarter as Franklin held the edge in the contest 12-7.
 
Ravenwood battled back in the second quarter with a mixture of three pointers and layups to trim the deficit by two points 25-23, with a last second bucket from junior Trevor Andrews.
 
In the third quarter, the Rebels found the net from three-point land with contributions from guards Reed Kemp, Aidan Smylie, and Connor Beavon to extend their lead to 44-38.
 
It was a party in the paint in the fourth quarter with juniors Matt Thurman and Mason Jones muscling big points down in the post to help the Rebels secure the win 70-54.
 
Kemp, a two-sport athlete, led all scorers with 25 points.
 
“Reed has the ability to put up numbers,” said Coach Tigert. “He did a good job of balancing attacking the basket and shooting the three ball. He also found other playmakers.”
 
“I was able to share the ball and hit open shots,” said Kemp. “My teammates hit shots for us to have a good game overall. Football has helped me be tough mentally and physically to get stronger and be light on my toes.”
 
The Raptors were held to 54 points total in the game.
 
“We have been working on it (defense) a lot. Coach Tigert has put us in a position to be better at defense this year,” said Kemp. “It is the goal to hold teams to low scoring.”
 
“It was good early, but then I felt like we had some lapses in the second half,” said Tigert. “For whatever reason, we tend to guard better when they are right there in front of us. When they get away from us, we are not defending them as well as we should. We are going to have to clean that up.”
 
One of the leading scorers for Ravenwood was junior guard Nick Dang with 11 points.
 
“He is a warrior,” said Coach Whitlock. “You can make an argument that he is our most valuable player because of all the things he does. He is an aggressive and competitive kid. He was trying to will us to a win.”
 
Ravenwood will go on the road to face Dickson County.
 
“We expect to go out to Dickson and play our best game of the season,” said Whitlock. “Dickson has a great coach and a team with a lot of seniors, so it will be a huge challenge.”
 
Franklin will travel to Page on Friday night.
 
“Page is a well-coached team and they play really hard,” said Tigert. “It should be a good matchup.”
 
“That has always been a good game in the past two years,” said Kemp. “I hope we continue to play good defense and do well on offense.”  

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