FP vs. SI Hoops

Franklin Parish guard Darius Johnson (10) defends Sicily Island's Larry Plummer. 

After coming painfully close to beating area basketball powerhouses Madison and Ferriday, only to come up short in overtime twice, the Franklin Parish Patriots have now rolled off three straight wins heading into the holiday tournaments this week.

The Patriots beat Mangham and Delhi in the Mangham Tournament last week, before holding off Sicily Island, 61-57, at the Pride Pit on Monday.

Franklin Parish (4-5) led the Tigers (4-13) by as much as 21 points in the second half, but that lead vanished by the last minutes of the contest thanks to a 25-point second half shooting clinic from Sicily Island junior Larry Plummer. The Class C all-state selection had 29 points and 8 rebounds on the night, shooting 5-of-8 from behind the arc in the second half. 

“I told the guys to expect a shooting barrage from him at some point. Larry Plummer always has a run in him,” Franklin Parish coach David Radar said. “There’s no quit in them (Sicily Island) and they battled us until the very end.”

Hampered again by inconsistent free throw shooting, Franklin Parish connected on only 3-of-13 free throws in the first three periods, but were able to sink 7-of-10 from the charity strike in a tense final period.

“We missed a bunch a free throws, which seems to be the story of our season right now, but we made them there in the end when it counted tonight. I’m proud of my guys for finishing,” said Radar.

Junior Darius Johnson had 17 points to lead the way for Franklin Parish. De’Von Foy and Greg Atkins each had 11 points. Kobe Jones and Reginald Carter both had 7 points, while sophomore Phil Mathis had 2 points, 4 rebounds and 2 blocks.

Radar said Mathis, a 6-foot-4 big-bodied center, provided a spark the Patriots needed in the paint.

“He’s been a pleasant surprise. He definitely was tonight,” said Radar. “He provided some excitement with a couple of blocks and rebounds. Apparently he’s become a fan favorite. He’s one of the young guns that were going to need down the stretch.”

The Patriots play Delhi (4-5) in the Rayville Shoot-Out today at 12:30 p.m., before competing in the Sicily Island Tournament on Dec. 29-31.

Radar said he’s liked the improvement he’s seen in his team over the first month of the season.

“We’ve had some tough scraps as of late,” Radar said. “We’ve grown alot as the season has progressed. We’ve played great team ball all year though."

"The little things have hurt us, like the free throws and foul trouble. We get that fixed and we’ll be on the right track.”

_

Franklin Parish 61, Sicily Island 57

Sicily Island

10

4

20

23

57

Franklin Parish  

20

12

10

19

61

Franklin Parish (4-5) — Darius Johnson, 17 points; Greg Atkins, 11 points; De'Von Foy, 11 points; Kobe Jones, 7 points; Reginald Carter, 7 points; JT Allen, 4 points. 

Sicily Island (4-13) — Larry Plummer, 29 points; Henry Higgs, 10 points; Jameon Tolliver, 9 points; Ryan Mason, 5 points. 

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