COLUMBIA — With only 1 second left in the third quarter and Hickman (10-13) leading by one, junior guard Eric Franklin hit a three from nearly half court to help propel the Kewpies to a 59-54 win over the Jefferson City Jays (12-11) on senior night.
“Coach said when I got the ball to just get down the court and see what I could get off,” Franklin said. “I was running down the court and I looked up and saw there was 1 second left so I just pulled up and soon as I released it I knew it was good.”
The three at the buzzer gave the Kewpies the lead 39-35 and the momentum to start the fourth quarter. Senior forward Tyler Stevens said his team knew the game was there’s after Franklin’s shot.
“That shot was it. We came into the huddle after that and coach said if that doesn’t get you hyped, then I don’t know what will,” Stevens said. “We came out in the fourth firing and every shot was going in and there was no looking back.”
Assistant coach Rod Kelly said Franklin is usually the key to Hickman playing well.
“Eric Franklin is a great ball player and he’s been our point guard all year long and as he goes, we go,” Kelly said. “It was a big shot and it got us all excited.
Stevens said it was a huge win and a great way to end his career at home with a win.
“It’s senior night in front of all my family and friends. It doesn’t get any bigger than that,” Stevens said. “Jeff City is our original rival so it was great to come out with a victory tonight.”
The Kewpies will look the carry the momentum from Friday night’s win into the district tournament next weekend at Rock Bridge.