Game Summaries


FRANKLIN v BRENTWOOD Williamson Herald

Football: Brentwood wins classic at Franklin in 39th meeting

The host Rebels cut the lead to 14-10 on Christopher Miller-Hill’s 33-yard field goal with 8:15 remaining. With the momentum appearing to swing to the home side, Carson Shacklett and the offensive line took over for six-and-a-half minutes, moving Brentwood from their own 30-yard line to the Franklin 28 before missing a field goal and calling on their defense to finish off the nail-biter.

 


Week 9 Game Summary Franklin v Mt Juliet

By Maurice Patton

As a longtime Chicago Cubs fan, Donnie Webb can afford to look at things a bit more from a ‘glass-half-full’ perspective these days…So the veteran Franklin coach was disappointed, but not despondent, over his team’s 42-35 overtime loss Friday at Mt. Juliet in the de facto Region 3-6A championship game.fhs-v-mt-juliet-summary-1

Barring a Golden Bear loss in their regular-season finale Thursday at McGavock, Mt. Juliet (7-2, 5-1) will be the No. 1 seed heading into the Class 6A playoffs. Franklin (7-2, 5-1) will wrap up the No. 2 seed with a victory Friday over visiting Lebanon. “Trying to look at it in a positive way … we lost a ballgame and then ran off seven straight,” Webb said, referring to the season-opening 28-24 loss to Centennial. “If we can learn from this one and stay the course and get tougher from it, (six) more straight would have us in Cookeville.

“I still think we are what we are, we’re still a good football team. Our goal is to finish up the season on a positive note. We’re still going to make the playoffs, still going to have a good seed. We want to make the best of it and see what we can do.” That said, the Rebels may have let one get away Friday after rallying from an early 10-7 deficit. Franklin put together a productive offensive performance despite getting just 88 rushing yards from Mitch Rossi, as quarterback Carter Hendry ran and threw for a combined 265 yards with four touchdowns, and Wes Patterson connected with J.P. Batarseh for a 28-yard fourth-quarter TD that put the visitors up 35-27 with 2:47 remaining in regulation.

From there, Mt. Juliet was able to score on a 14-yard run by quarterback Mason Earls – his second TD of the night – add the tying two-point conversion, then get another Earls TD from seven yards out for the gamewinner.                 The loss came in spite of Franklin outgaining the Golden Bears by 159 offensive yards.

fhs-v-mt-juliet-summary-2 “The biggest difference in the game was field position, and their kicking game was the difference in making that field position possible,” Webb said. “We started every kickoff on the 20-yard line, they were averaging close to the 30. We shanked a punt, and we had a turnover, so they started on the 30 once and on the 15 once. Field position and kicking game.” Kicker of the year candidate Jacob Bailey connected on a pair of field goals for Mt. Juliet, from 21 and 49 yards, to salvage a couple of possessions for the hosts.

Despite the loss, Webb was pleased with the play of linebacker Conner Palk and defensive tackle Adam Sirface, while receiver Alex Gaca finished with five catches for 114 yards and a score. “They willed one more play than us down at the end,” Webb said.

                For more from veteran Midstate sports writer Maurice Patton…

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Week 8 Game Summary Franklin v McGavock

By Maurice Patton

Any possibility of Franklin looking past McGavock to a potential Region 3-6A ‘championship game’ the following weekend was laid to rest about as decisively as the host Raiders were Friday night.

The visiting Rebels grabbed a two-touchdown lead less than five minutes into an eventual 48-21 victory, one in which Franklin scored all its points in the opening two quarters. “I’m proud we came out, especially offensively, and did some things well from the get-go,” Rebels coach Donnie Webb said after his team went to 7-1 (5-0). “In the second half, when we were playing a lot of young kids, I thought we were looking at the clock to see how quickly we could get back to Franklin. “I told these guys since the beginning of the year we were going to be a team that would be part of the region (title) talk. We knew once we won that game, a region championship game was going to be right around the corner.” fhs-v-mcgavock-summary-2

Wes Patterson’s 22-yard pass to Gentry Neese put the Rebels up 7-0 at the 9:05 mark of the first period, and Mitch Rossi’s 22-yard run doubled that margin with 7:01 to go in the quarter. After the Raiders’ Cornelius Smith took the ensuing kickoff 93 yards for a score, Patterson and Max Page hooked up for an 18-yard touchdown with 4½ minutes remaining. Carter Hendry broke a 54-yard run to paydirt on the next possession, and Patterson scored from 13 yards out with one second left in the quarter to make it a 34-7 game.

“Two of our first three touchdowns were passes,” Webb said. “McGavock, right off the bat their game plan was to try to bring pressure to stop our option. They were determined to take away the inside option, and that opened up the passing game. “From there, things balanced back out to where Rossi was able to get going.” Rossi finished with 143 rushing yards and a touchdown on 14 carries, leading a ground attack that accounted for 298 of Franklin’s 426 yards. Collin Saulters added a rushing TD and Alex Gaca caught a 54-yard scoring pass from Hendry to push the lead to 48-7 by halftime. “I didn’t think our practices (prior to the game) were going that well,” Webb said. “I think (our performance) was a factor of having 24 seniors, and many of them key players in our game plan weekly.” fhs-v-mcgavock-game-summary-1

With McGavock (1-7, 1-4) in the rearview mirror, Webb and the Rebels turned their attention to their upcoming matchup with Mt. Juliet. The Golden Bears dropped back-to-back games at home against Cane Ridge and region foe Ravenwood in a 1-2 start, but have since run off five straight wins – four in league play. The method in which Mt. Juliet has managed its success looks familiar to Webb. “Even in our one loss, I’ve felt like all year we’ve been the more physical team, that our offensive and defensive fronts have controlled the line of scrimmage for the most part,” he said. “The first thing that jumps out, seeing Mt. Juliet live and turning on the film, is that they’re doing the same thing, trying to be physical and come off the ball and block people. “I’m really impressed with their offensive line. In all our games, even against Wilson Central, our offensive line — it may take them a bit, but as the game goes on, I feel they’ve worn people down. Where I think that’s been our ‘M.O.’, we’re going to be challenged from that aspect.”

                For more from veteran Midstate sports writer Maurice Patton…

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Week 7 Game Summary Franklin v Wilson Central

By Maurice Patton

Pending the outcome of their next contest, the Franklin Rebels took a big step toward setting up a Region 3-6A title game with their 42-35 homefield win Thursday over Wilson Central. franklin-wilson-central-pic-1

Improving to 6-1 overall and 4-0 in league play with their sixth consecutive victory, the Rebels need a win this weekend at McGavock to go into their Oct. 21 game at Mt. Juliet undefeated. The host Golden Bears, meanwhile, are the No. 2 team in the region at 6-2 (4-1) following their 45-0 win Thursday over Antioch. Mt. Juliet has an open date this week. “Our goal is to win this week and set up a championship game with us and Mt. Juliet,” Franklin coach Donnie Webb said after the shootout victory over Wilson Central (6-2, 3-2) – a game in which the Rebels never trailed, but never led comfortably, either.

“Wilson Central was better offensively than I gave them credit for,” Webb said. “I thought we’d get more pressure on the quarterback. I thought we’d take the running game away. We didn’t, and that’s what turned it into a shootout. I felt we’d score, but I thought we’d get more stops than we did.”

Indeed, Franklin scored 40-plus points for the third time in its last four games. However, the Rebels allowed a season high in points and the most they’d given up since their 28-24 loss to Centennial in the season opener. The Wildcats put up 470 offensive yards and rallied from a 21-7 first-quarter deficit behind running back Tyler Bowes (182 rushing yards, two touchdowns) and quarterback Blake Meadors (299 passing yards, three touchdowns). Meadors threw a 32-yard scoring pass to Bowes with 5:11 remaining to tie the game at 35-all.

franklin-wilson-central-pic-2Franklin QB Wes Patterson drove his team back downfield and scored on a 14-yard run with 24 seconds remaining for the gamewinner. “I can’t say enough about Wes,” Webb said. “He took too much of that playoff game (last year’s 21-20 second-round loss to Wilson Central) on his own shoulders. I was really proud for him to be able to have such a big game.” Patterson threw for 160 yards and three TDs – two to Alex Gaca, who finished with 118 receiving yards on seven catches, and a 50-yarder to Mitch Rossi to break a 28-28 halftime deadlock. Rossi rushed for 104 yards and a score.

As Franklin comes down the stretch and contemplates postseason play, Webb said the Wilson Central contest gives his team some things to work on. “We think offensively we can score some points, we can play with anybody,” he said. “Obviously we want to run the football, but we do have some threats on the outside. We think the better part of our football team is our offense. We want them to be on the field.

“I’m as happy as anybody (with the win), but when we turn the film on and it’s time to go back to work – we’ve got some problems. We’ve got to get better in coverage. In Class 6A, everybody’s in the playoffs. Everybody in the Memphis region (Region 4-6A) except one team is some sort of spread offense. We’re going to have to be able to go out and stop those type offenses. I’m glad we found it now. Some of it is schematic, but the rest is working on us and getting better. “We have some things to go back to the chalkboard on.”

                For more from veteran Midstate sports writer Maurice Patton….

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Week 6 Game Summary Franklin v Antioch

By Maurice Patton

Opening with 24 unanswered points, Franklin made sure homecoming festivities would be enjoyable with Friday’s 45-7 victory over Antioch. With the win, the Rebels improved to 5-1 overall and 3-0 in Region 3-6A play heading into a Thursdayfranklin-antioch-summary-1 night league matchup with visiting Wilson Central.

Christopher Miller-Hill put the hosts on the scoreboard with a 39-yard field goal less than four minutes into the contest, and Mitch Rossi followed with touchdown runs of 29 yards, 40 yards and 1 yard – the last with 9:53 left in the second period to make it a 24-0 game.

Rossi wound up rushing for a game-high 136 yards on 16 carries, giving him 667 yards and eight touchdowns through Franklin’s six games. Antioch (1-5, 0-3) scored on a 76-yard Noah Scales pass to Donald Weakley and cut the Rebel cushion to 24-7, but the hosts answered with an 11-yard Carter Hendry run for a touchdown and a 14-yard Wes Patterson pasfranklin-antioch-summary-2s to J.P. Batarseh for another TD.

Leading 38-7 at halftime, the Rebels added another score a minute into the third quarter as Hendry broke loose for a 49-yarder. Hendry finished with 77 rushing yards on five carries as Franklin rushed for 252 yards and finished with 311 total – more than double Antioch’s 152-yard output.

Price
Wynn had a team-high six total tackles for Franklin, which has won five straight since its season-opening loss to Centennial. Wilson Central (6-1, 3-1) comes to Franklin following a 62-26 region win over county rival Lebanon. The Wildcats suffered their only loss at the hands of Mt. Juliet, a 39-32 overtime defeat in Week 6.

                For more from veteran Midstate sports writer Maurice Patton….

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Week 5 Game Summary Franklin v Ravenwood

By Maurice Patton

Shaking off an early sfranklin-ravenwood-game-summary-pic-1pecial teams breakdown, Franklin rallied with a couple of fourth-quarter scores to pick up a 21-13 win Fridayat Ravenwood.

The victory was the first in the series for the Rebels since 2011, as they improved to 4-1 overall and 2-0 in Region 3-6A. “In joking fashion, one of my assistants grabbed my back (after the game) and said ‘the monkey’s gone’,” Franklin coach Donnie Webb said. “I’m sure it’s the same feeling for the kids. We always felt we were as good as them.”

The defending state titlists posted the game’s first points, recovering a blocked punt for a touchdown with 3:18 remaining in the opening period for a 6-0 cushion. The lead was shortlived, though, as senior Mitch Rossi scored from four yards out to cap the ensuing Franklin drive and Christopher Miller-Hill added the extra point for a 7-6 advantage.

Carter Nelson’s 1-yard plunge put the Raptors (2-3, 1-1) back in front 13-7, four minutes into the second quarter, and the margin held up as the game reached intermission and through the third quarter – concerning Webb. “At the end of the third quarter, they had 60-something yards and we had 200-something, and they were winning the game,” he said. “We had too many turnovers, too many penalties and special teams (busts).

“The game had a weird feel to it. I never felt threatened that they could drive the ball on us, if we could just keep it and hang on to it and make some plays. I knew we were the better football team, but we were putting ourselves in a spot where we were about to run out of time if we didn’t make some plays.”

That sense of urgency finally took hold for the Rebels, as they converted a Ravenwood turnover near midfield into points when Rossi’s 8-yard run made it a 14-13 game with 10 minutes remaining. Wes Patterson added an insurance touchdown with his 4-yard run at the three-minute mark, and a Zach Polisky pick-6 was negated by an illegal block on the return but ended the hosts’ hopes of a comeback.

“I guess that’s how it’s going to be for us. It’s getting kind of old,” Webb said of his team’s third game decided by one possession. Offensively, Franklin wasn’t quite as productive as in previous weeks – finishing with 266 yards as Rossi (100 rushing yards) and Patterson (90 rushing yards) led the way. “Wes kept us going,” Webb said, as the Rebels did dominate time of possession once again, holding the ball for 34-plus minutes.

Defensively,franklin-ravenwood-game-summary-2 ends Barrett Brown and Conner Palk teamed for 10 tackles – five for loss – as that unit held Ravenwood to 119 yards. “We played ‘nickel’ the whole night and we needed to stop the run, and it was going to take those guys to do it,” Webb said of the pair.

With an open date looming, Webb said it couldn’t have come at a better time on the schedule as his team can get set for the second half of the regular season and solidify its Class 6A postseason prospects.  “Having just played Brentwood and Ravenwood back to back – for our kids, two rivals like that, this is a really good spot for an open week,” he said. “We can work on this stuff. We’ve got a chance to be a team on our side (of the bracket) to be reckoned with. I don’t think we’re great defensively, but I think our kids play hard. Offensively, we’ve been stopping ourselves.”

When the Rebels do return to play, they’ll do so with three of their final five games at home, including a Thursday matchup with Wilson Central in Week 8.  “It’s all region games from here,” Webb said. “I know we all make the playoffs, but it still matters to have those playoff games at home. In the first two rounds, the home team wins a high percentage of those. So that’s our goal.”

                For more from veteran Midstate sports writer Maurice Patton…

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Week 4 Game Summary Franklin v Brentwood

By Maurice Patton

Overcoming a rough start, Franklin achieved a rare feat Friday night with its 41-7 win over visiting Brentwood.

“There are not many senior classes here that can say they didn’t lose to Brentwood,” coach Donnie Webb said after his Rebels committed three fumbles on their opening three possessions and trailed 7-0 midway through ff-brentwood-summary-pic-1the opening quarter but rallied to improve to 3-1.

“We told them this week, they had an opportunity to do something very few people have done – certainly not since I’ve been here.”

After struggling to close their initial two outings, the Rebels have outscored their last two opponents 69-13. Carter Hendry’s 46-yard pass to Alex Gaca just before the end of the first quarter tied the game, and Franklin never let up on either side of the ball.

“It really did get away from (Brentwood) once we got it rolling offensively,” Webb said after the Rebels amassed 466 total yards and a season high in points. “We got that first touchdown to tie it up, and from that point on, we weren’t only matching their intensity – I thought we were being the aggressor. We were being a little more physical than they were. We were getting more than one hat to the football defensively. There was a sense of urgency.

“I know we’ve challenged them. I don’t think we’d practiced very well (earlier), and I think that was showing up on Friday nights, losing focus, not finishing. I think our senior class finally decided they needed to be the leaders of the football team and took a step forward with that.”

Wes Patterson threw for two more scores – one each to J.P. Batarseh and Gaca – with Mitch Rosff-brentwood-summary-pic-2si and Gentry Neese adding rushing touchdowns and Christopher Miller-Hill connecting on a pair of field goals.

Rossi just missed the 100-yard mark for the second straight week, finishing with a team-high 97 on nine carries. He now has 431 rushing yards in four games.

Brentwood (1-3) finished with 163 offensive yards in losing its second straight game, as well as its fourth in the series.

Franklin returns to Region 3-6A play Friday with a trip to Ravenwood (2-2, 1-0).

“The motivation ought to be there for us,” Webb said of the upco ming matchup against the reigning state champions. “It’s a region game, and we’re going from a team our seniors have never lost to, to one they’ve never beaten.”

                For more from veteran Midstate sports writer Maurice Patton…

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Week 3 Game Summary Franklin v Overton

By Maurice Patton

After going to the wire in their first two outings, the Franklin Rebels decided things relatively early Friday to open Region 3-6A play with a 28-6 win at Overton.

Quarterbacks Carter Hendry and Wes Patterson combined to account for all four touchdowns as the visiFraklin Overton Game Summary tors broke on top, led 14-0 at halftime and rolled up 502 offensive yards while holding the ball for three-quarters of the game.

“If we think we’re a team that can compete for our region, we needed to play well in that first (game) and play from the lead instead of playing from behind,” coach Donnie Webb said after his team forced three interceptions – two by Jared Howell – to win the turnover battle and avenge a 41-20 homefield loss to the Bobcats from a year ago.

Putting an opponent away was a point of emphasis for the Rebel coaching staff after dropping a 28-24 decision to Centennial in the opener and nearly suffering the same fate in last week’s 27-20 win over host Riverdale.

“As we started looking at film and at what was causing (the late-game issues), it was really Franklin problems – turnovers, penalties, not something that was forced upon us,” Webb said. “We stressed that we needed to clean up the part of football that Franklin plays.”

Two offensive twists contributed to Friday’s result, as Overton made moves to limit running back Mitch Rossi’s touches while the visitors tried to take advantage of Overton’s numbers on defense.

Hendry (92 rushing yards) and Patterson combined for 156 yards and a touchdown on 22 carries. Rossi came up just short of his third 100-yard performance, finishing with 95 on 22 attempts, but caught two passes, both for scores.

“They were tryinFraklin OVerton Summary 2g to take him away,” Webb said of Rossi. “That’s just part of the option.

“What was very unlike us was, we went no-huddle. We normally want to slow the game down, but they had so many (playing) both ways that we felt that was better for us as long as we could be successful with it.”

Defensively, Franklin avoided trouble early when a 71-yard Taverius Travis scoring run was called back for a penalty. On the night, the Rebels allowed just 108 yards, with Overton (1-2, 0-1) picking up its only score on a Theo Jackson 5-yard third-quarter run.

“I thought we did a really good job on all but one play,” Webb said. “We didn’t have our leverage right. We’ve got to be perfect against kids faster than us. They took it to the house; we were fortunate. But we played really aggressive defensively. We had several people to the ball.”

Next up for the Rebels is a visit from Brentwood (1-2) in non-region play.

“I’ve been a part of many of those games, as an assistant and as head coach,” Webb said. “Many years we played each other twice. It doesn’t matter, the records of either team. All that needs to be said is ‘Brentwood’. We’re both 0-0, and it’ll be a brawl from start to finish.

“We’ve got to enjoy Overton, but this is definitely Brentwood week.”

                For more from veteran Midstate sports writer Maurice Patton…

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Week 2 Game Summary Franklin v Riverdale

By Maurice Patton

Franklin had another late letdown, but it wasn’t costly this week as the Rebels held on for a 27-20 win at Riverdale.

“We tried FHS Riverdale Summary Picto do the same thing as the week before,” coach Donnie Webb said, referring to the season-opening 28-24 loss to Centennial, in which his team had a double-digit lead in the final two minutes.

The Rebels improved to 1-1 with the victory over a talented foe from Region 2-6A and was impressive early, getting out to a 14-0 first-quarter lead before lightning forced a one-hour delay. Following the unexpected break, they maintained their momentum and built a 24-7 halftime advantage. Riverdale (1-1) rallied in the second half, forcing a Franklin red zone turnover to keep the contest close and finally fading when FHS Riverdale Summary 2an onside kick attempt was recovered by the visitors. “We had an opportunity to put a team away again and made a mistake,” Webb said. “We fumbled going in when it would have put us up 21. We’ve got to make a stop there defensively and we don’t.

“We’ll continue to stress – we’ve got to finish games when we have that opportunity, especially when a team has playmakers that can score in one play. (Riverdale) kept fighting. We’ve got to get over that hump offensively, to finish drives and get things done.”

Mitch Rossi had another productive night offensively, with 117 rushing yards and a touchdown on 24 carries. Carter Hendry added a score on a 4-yard run and Jonathan Giles had a 21-yard ‘pick-6’. Christopher Miller-Hill tacked on field goals from 42 and 37 yards when the Rebel offense stalled. “For the players and coaches, it’s a lot more fun to watch film and learn coming off a win,” Webb said. “It’s not as tough to get through.”

                For more from veteran Midstate sports writer Maurice Patton….

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Week 1 Game Summary Franklin v Centennial

By Maurice PattonFranklin v Centennial Game Summary

Franklin controlled about 46 minutes of its season-opening matchup Friday with visiting crosstown rival Centennial. Unfortunately for the host Rebels, it’s a 48-minute affair, and the Cougars’ performance in the final two was the difference in a 28-24 upset. Centennial managed to score twice in the last 78 seconds – recovering an onside kick to set up Tre Stewart’s 43-yard gamewinning touchdown pass to Austin Waddell with just 10 ticks left on the clock. “It’s disappointing that we had our opportunities to put them away and we didn’t,” Franklin coach Donnie Webb said. “We let a team with some good athletes, that were better than us in space, hang around. They made the plays at the end.” Despite a 122-yard rushing effort by Mitch Rossi, the result marked the third consecutive loss in the series for Franklin. Rossi and Connor Palk each added a sack defensively, as the Rebels got pressure on Stewart for most of the night before he caught fire late. “Kudos to him down the stretch,” Webb said. “He really was struggling. “There’s so many things you question that you might have done differently, but for the most part, I think we’d have played the game the same. Just not focusing on little things that came up, cost us in the end. Not taking advantage of some Centennial miscues early, we left some points on the field, and us with some mental mistakes, blowing some assignments. But hat’s off to Centennial. They never quit.” JP Batarseh and Alex Gaca each caught a scoring pass for Franklin – Gaca a 53-yarder from Wes Patterson to put the Rebels on the scoreboard in the first quarter, Batarseh a 78-yarder from Carter Hendry in the third period to extend the margin to 17-7. Franklin rolled up 400-plus offensive yards in the loss. Next up for the Rebels is a Friday trip to Riverdale. Franklin pulled out a 34-20 homefield decision last season against the Warriors. “In the grand scheme of things, there’s still a lot of football to play,” Webb said. “They (Centennial) are going to win a lot of games, and I still believe we’ve got an opportunity to win a lot of games.”

                For more from veteran Midstate sports writer Maurice Patton…

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