FRANKTON — This Saturday night must have felt like déjà vu for Frankton boys basketball in all the wrong ways.
Lapel’s Carson Huber put down two free throws in the closing seconds last weekend to beat the Eagles, 59-57. Tonight, a 3-point bomb from Tipton’s Dalton Money with 1.2 seconds left handed Frankton it second straight loss at home 37-34.
“I thought we defended extremely well, but that kid just made a great shot from the corner and we we’re in hopes eye,” Eagles head coach Brent Brobston said. “Our problem tonight was we didn’t get enough offensive looks overall. I’m not even sure if that was the case, but turning over the ball 16 times and going 6-10 at the line is not enough to win against a good team.”
Looking for a miracle with 1.6 seconds left, senior Ethan Bates shot a prayer from just outside center court and it fell. However, Brobston had called a timeout, negating the shot. Frankton turned over the ball after the timeout and narrow out to 2-2 on the season.
“We were at 2.3 seconds and we thought we could get it down to 1.9 second and get a shot off from the corner,” Brobston said. “We were going to go to Bates and of course he threw it up. We were going to call the timeout because we thought he was going to get fouled. We called timeout, he made it and the rest is history.”
Bates had already proved earlier in the night that he can stay cool as time expires. He hit a big shot from deep at the buzzer to put Frankton up 31-28 at the end of the third. The team’s lone senior led the Eagles with 14 points on the night.
As the young Frankton squad headed to its locker room after another tight loss at home, Brobston can only think of the positives that come out of the heartbreaker. Brobston believes that the young core needs to experience the good and bad to become better.
“We’re just young and inexperienced,” Brobston said. “We had one guy play varsity basketball last season, so these other six, seven kids coming in have not been in these situations. If we take the back way, these losses can make us better.”
However, there is still a need for improvement in any loss. Heavy turnovers and inconsistent shooting at the line set back Frankton. Meanwhile, Tipton put down 11 points at the line and recorded 12 turnovers. Up to the final buzzer, Money lead the Blue Devils with 11 points.
The Eagles countered their offensive performance with a strong defensive showing. Frankton picked up 15 rebounds on the defensive end and two blocks. In addition, the Eagles limited 6-foot-8 Tipton senior Ben Humrichous to just two points.
“(Humrichous) was averaging 25 points a game, is a Huntington recruit and has received a few Division I offers,” Brobston said. “He’s a good player, we knew that and we limited him. Zack Davenport did an outstanding job defending him. He really showed up defensively.”
Other standouts for Frankton include junior Luke Sheward, with 11 points for the Eagles. For Tipton, senior Cory Vonfeldt was a pain in Frankton side, downing nine points and picking up four fouls.
While 2-2 is not ideal for the Eagles, Brobston said that their current record has also been frequented in the past.
“We were 2-2 last year and we went to the final four,” Brobston said. “We were 2-2 in 2017 and we won the State Championship. These losses, if you take them the right way and get better from them, they have no meaning to them other than they were great games and we have to find ways to win.”