St. Frances

Hamilton Heights end St. Frances Undefeated season, advance to Nationals Final

Queens, NY – Day two of the DICK′s Nationals began with the ladies' bracket. Hamilton Heights (TN) and St. Frances Academy (MD) battled in a thriller, Hamilton Heights winning 56-55 in overtime.

Hamilton held on by a thin hair thanks to two free throws by Elizabeth Balogun that put the Lady Hawks up one point. Boulden finished with a team-high 14 points and game-high 7 blocks.

Freshman, Amber Reese, had a monster game, finishing with 20 points, 22 boards, 6 dimes, and 3 steals. Reese put-back to end the fourth quarter sent the game into overtime. The freshman forward worked hard from start to finish, trying to battle against the size of Hamilton Heights.

″I think we proved why we were 30-0,″ Reese said. ″The country got to see that and even though we lost, we′re still 30-0 in my heart.″

The length of Hamilton Heights was a big factor. Treasure Hunt, Balgoun, and Kamilla Cardosa clogged the paint and made it difficult for the Lady Panthers to penetrate.

Hamilton Heights started the game on a 9-0 run. St. Frances first four possessions resulted in turnovers and block shots attempts. It wasn′t until the two minute mark that the Lady Panthers scored their first bucket.

″The message during the run was we need to pick it up and communicate,″ St. Frances guard, Mia Davis said about the early run by Hamilton Heights. ″During the 9-0 run we weren′t communicating during the beginning of the game… we said we need to get back, stop making lazy passes and once we got back out there we picked up the slack.

The Lady Panthers fought all game to overcome deficits. They were able to tie the game in the second quarter, going 10-16 at the free throw line. Poor shooting from the field by St. Frances still allowed Hamilton Heights to keep the lead going into halftime.

The Lady Hawks went up by as much as 13 in the third quarter, once again using their size to create offense. Amber Hunt hit a big three that started 7-0 for the Hawks.

St. Frances began an 13-0 that started in the final minute of the third quarter. Nia Clouden knocked down a three-pointer that tied the game at 40. Amber Hunt answered with a three of her own, followed by a tough layup by Jazmine Massengill, who finished with 12 points. Cardosa missed a free throw on the other end which gave the Lady Panthers an opportunity to get one more shot off. Delicia Pinnick pushed the ball up court and got inside the paint for a layup attempt. Reese cleaned up the missed attempt and put the ball back up as time expired.

In overtime, A.Hunt and Pinnick traded threes to start the period but it was free throws that helped win the game for the Lady Hawks. The Lady Panthers had one last attempt to score with 20 seconds left. Reese got a look at the rim but the ball rolled around rim.

The Lady Panthers were disappointed about the loss but they were happy with their performance. They wanted to prove to people why they were invited and why they were undefeated.

Avalon defeats St.Frances in Season opener 19-18

BALTIMORE --- Football season is officially here for the Fan-I Gang. 

What was listed as a scrimmage, Avalon School and St. Frances turned out to be a real game, and a great season opener . 

The Black Knights of Avalon School walked out with victory after trailing 18-6 at halftime on the road. Both teams were playing with first game jitters, but St. Frances controlled most of the game, until the last quarter. 

St. Frances went up 12-6 in the first quarter when Mike Berry caught the bad snap out of the air and returned 22 yards to the endzone. 

With a 1st year starter at quarterback on varsity, Isiah Robinson, Avalon School worked their way down field multiple times despite having numerous mental errors by both the QB and snapper. I commend Avalon head coach, Tyree Spinner, and his staff for sticking with Robinson, who had troubles finding his touch on not only the long ball but crossing routes. 

Eventually he found it and started connecting. 

Coaching is what won this game for the Black Knights, trusting in their players, never showing signs of panic, and some solid play calling. Avalon ran a jet sweep --  their best play all game -- to set up a bubble pop pass to star athlete, Trevon Diggs, on the opposite end. Diggs took that pass 40 yards up the field to tie the ball game at 18 in the 3rd quarter. 

On the previous drive, the Knights scored on that same jet sweep, reason why the Panthers bit on it. 

While the Panthers couldn't convert none of their PAT attempts, the Knights converted one extra-point which gave them the lead 19-18. 

In the 4th quarter both teams played solid defense but, St. Francis needed more than defense to win this game. St. Frances defensive front was very impressive, especially junior Savion Williams. Williams was the main reason why the Knights struggled to find some rhythm on offense, causing havoc in the backfield almost every play. I spoke with Williams after the game and already he has 12 offers without participating in any big time camps. Only camp he attended was Alabama's, who is one of the 12 schools that has offered him a scholarship. By the end season, Williams will be one of the best players in the state, you heard it first at 
 Overall the Panthers didn't play bad, they just couldn't close out the game. Avalon made the plays they needed to make, plus their star player made the biggest plays down the stretch, catching an interception on the ensuing drive after his TD. 

Diggs is the younger brother of current NFL Rookie and former Maryland Terp, Stefon Diggs. Diggs is uncommitted but he has offers from Bama, Florida State, Clemson, Georgia, LSU, and of course Maryland. 

Coach Spinner said the one thing that makes Diggs so good that most people don't know about him, is he makes other players around him better, which showed tonight. Numerous times, Diggs was Robinson's safety blacket, but kudos to Robinson for making something happen after the play broke down. 

This wasn't a game with a lot of highlights from Diggs but he answered the moment called upon, which is what you look for in a playmaker. When I asked him about playing every game with a target on his back, he simply replied "man it's fun, I love it".