FRONTENAC — It wasn’t a perfect homecoming night for the Frontenac High School basketball teams against Independence on Friday, but all wasn’t lost, as the boys’ team avenged the 64-51 loss for the Lady Raiders with a 68-63 win in game two.
FRONTENAC BOYS HANG ON TO BEAT BULLDOGS
The Frontenac boys’ team stayed true at the line in the final minute of regulation, hitting 12 free throws down the stretch to protect the lead and come out with a 68-63 win over Independence.
The Bulldogs made it a one-possession game with 47.9 seconds remaining after trailing the entire contest, but didn’t get an opportunity to take the lead in the final four possessions, as Jake Wilbert and Broc Ginavan knocked down their free throws following a series of intentionally fouls.
Frontenac hit the ground running and set the tone with a 14-3 run after the opening tip, with four points coming from Ginavan and Peyton Brown.
A 9-0 run by the Bulldogs narrowed the gap to two, but an 8-2 run by FHS — highlighted by four points from Hayden Pile — pushed the lead to 27-20 halfway through the second quarter.
Jake Wilbert made it a double-digit advantage with a jumper to begin the second half, before a rally by Independence tied the game at 48-48 with just over two minutes remaining in the third quarter.
The Raiders quickly regained the lead, thanks to four consecutive points by Pile, and continued to keep the Bulldogs at bay with free throws down the stretch.
Pile was the offensive catalyst in the win with a team-high 22 points, while his teammates Wilbert and Ginavan posted 15 and 14 respectively.
LADY RAIDERS’ RALLY COMES UP SHORT
A disappointing start to homecoming night saw the Frontenac girls’ team get tagged with a 64-51 loss.
After falling behind by double-digits early in the first quarter and trailing nearly entire game, the Lady Raiders climbed back to take a one-point lead in the third quarter, but couldn’t keep it for long in the loss.
FHS jumped out to a 4-2 lead on the strength of back-to-back buckets from Lauren Harper and Bria Ginavan before falling behind 17-4 following 15 consecutive points by the Bulldogs.
A 3-pointer by Karma Fields ended the dry spell for the Lady Raiders and sparked a 10-2 run which cut the deficit to 19-14 in the final minute of the opening quarter.
Independence went on to stretch the lead to nine by halftime, but a 9-2 run by the Lady Raiders to begin the third quarter put them to within two points of the lead at 35-33.
The run was highlighted by a pair of 3-pointers from Fields and included 3-pointer from Madi Davis.
Seven consecutive points for FHS — with four coming from Reagen Hipfl — put the Raiders on top for the first time since the opening minutes at 42-41 with just over two minutes remaining in the third quarter.
Frontenac’s lead didn’t last long, as the Bulldogs took it right back in the next possession en route to going on a 13-2 run and closing out the win.
The Raiders will be in Girard at 6 p.m. on Tuesday.
— Jordan Buckamneer is the sports editor of the Pittsburg Morning Sun. E-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @jbuckamneer.