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Comets squander lead, fall to Franklin 64-58

South Boston News
Dashon Louden is surrounded by three FCHS defenders in early action from Thursday’s Comet-Eagles varsity game. (David Conner II photo) / January 15, 2018
It’s another incomplete assignment for the Halifax County varsity boys.

The Halifax County High School basketball team continued its roller-coaster ride of a season Thursday night, looking like one kind of team early. Then, the Comets played like a weaker team in the late going, with the game on the line. Halifax was burdened by defensive mistakes, ball security problems and overall inconsistency.

The final result dropped Halifax to 5-9 on the season, as the boys fell to a relentless Franklin County squad, 64-58.

Halifax had three players in double figures, including David Medley with 17 points, Dashon Louden with 16 and Terrell Carden with 11. Jordan Williams had seven and MyQuan Williams four.

Halifax squandered a 23-point first half lead and could not contain FC in the end.

Halifax blistered the 3-point shooting assignment early and bolted to a 36-19 advantage at halftime. FC was plagued by turnovers and an inability to keep pace with the Comets on defense, and it looked like the Eagles were headed home to Rocky Mount with a lopsided loss.

Halifax struggled with ball security in the third and fell victim to a 23-9 Eagle surge in that eight-minute stretch.

Franklin put 22 more on the board in the final period, as the Comets only produced 11 points.

Halifax proved especially effective at halftime launching shots from beyond the arc. Halifax went seven of 15 from three-point range in the first two quarters, with Carden sinking three treys and David Medley two.

Then, in the last two periods, the Comets did not knock down a single trey, scoring just nine baskets overall.

The Comets were especially dry in the final period, scoring just five baskets. Medley had five of the team’s 11 points and only two other Comets, J. Williams, with four, and Louden, with one hoop, got into the scoring column.

Ultimately, Halifax, which still led 47-42 heading into the final eight minutes, could not contain the Eagles.

Franklin finished with a game-high 21 from Chandler Taylor, who had 15 in the final period. Jalon Twine had 19 and Glenn Parris ten. Franklin hit on four treys in the third and fourth periods, with Taylor basically driving the Comet defenders crazy.

“It hurts, but we’ve got to learn from it because we hadn’t been in this situation before,” said coach Sterling Williams.

“We came out and had a half we hadn’t had all year. The first half was a half we can build on. It was a half we can learn from.”

“I know people get tired of hearing that, but we hadn’t had a 20-point lead all year except for maybe the Gretna game, and that was late in the game. This was something that was new for this team. We haven’t played with a lead like that before. We kind of took our foot off of the gas pedal.”

The Comets struggled in the second half on defense. Williams lamented that Halifax could not keep Eagle players out of the lane. He also noted Franklin took advantage of stronger offensive rebounding. The Eagles found opportunities with some open looks, and put together two stout quarters in a row.

“When you’re up 23 points in the first half, you’ve got to expect that team to come back out fighting,” said Williams.

Halifax had 21 turnovers, eight in the third period.

Halifax is 2-5 in the Piedmont District.

Halifax could not keep its momentum. Franklin rallied and kept its poise, while finding its offense late in a well-executed road effort by the Eagles.

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