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Franklin boys basketball rallies past Towson

Sanders scores 16 off bench to spark Indians to 59-45 victory

By Tom Worgo, tworgo@tribune.com

11:01 PM EST, February 7, 2014

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Franklin freshman Lamont Sanders took the pressure in stride in Friday night's boys basketball game against host Towson. The shooting guard made 10 of 12 free throws in last four minutes and scored a season-high 16 points off the bench to help the Indians rally to a 59-45 victory on senior night.

"He tends to be reserved at times," Franklin coach Kyle Locke said. "I dug into him. I told Lamont, 'We need more from him.' He responded and stepped it up."

Franklin needed a spark. The Indians trailed for more than three quarters and Towson had its biggest lead of the game with 6:50 remaining in the fourth quarter, 43-36, when junior point guard Grant Oliver hit a three-pointer. 

About a minute later, the momentum started to swing in the Indians' favor.

Franklin got back-to-back three-pointers from Jalen Archer and Damien Taylor to tie the game at 43-43.

After Colby Hogan made a layup to put Towson (6-8) ahead, 45-43, Generals senior center Joe Jackson was called for a personal foul and technical foul.  

That led to six straight free throws, and Sanders made five of them, to give Franklin a 48-45 advantage.

After the fouls,  Jackson went to the bench. He finished with a team highs in points (12) and rebounds (8). 

"The technical foul changed the whole game," Towson coach Tim Gavin said. "Apparently, for shoving the referee told me. He is done for the next game, too. They couldn't stop (Jackson). They hit five of six free throws. The game was over. We couldn't score after that."

Franklin (5-11) closed the game on a 16-0 run in the last 3:54. During that stretch, Towson committed seven turnovers and went 0-for-4 from the field.

"It was senior night, and sometimes people want to try to be a hero," Gavin said. "The energy and effort was there. Our kids were diving all over the floor. It was the execution. When it gets tight late in games, we make mistakes." 

Junior guard Marcus Dixon totaled 16 points, 9 steals and 6 rebounds for Franklin. Archer added eight points, and Taylor and Seth Buckner contributed seven each.

Hogan finished with nine points and Oliver had eight.