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Franklin Regional's boys basketball team knocks off Plum

| Wednesday, Feb. 13, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

Given the way the last few weeks have gone, Franklin Regional's boys basketball team probably wishes the season had another month.

Franklin Regional capped off a strong end to the season with a Section 2-AAAA win over rival Plum, 54-50, which gave the Panthers four straight wins and wins in five of their last six games to close out the season.

Jake Roberge led Franklin Regional (12-10, 6-8) with 14 points, Charan Singh scored 12, George Brown had 11, and Tyler Hamilton had 10 for the Panthers against Plum (11-11, 6-8). FR put the win away in the fourth quarter by making 10 of 13 foul shots to hold a slim lead throughout.

“Having a young team, one of the things I talked about was that we needed our guys to improve throughout the season,” Franklin Regional coach Brad Midgley said.

“By beating a team that beat us the first time, it's good for the players to see something come out of that improvement.”

Two of FR's final three wins came against teams that it lost to previously — Plum and McKeesport.

“We started to treat each possession with more importance,” Midgley said. “In the start, we had trouble winning close games. We'd take a bad shot, or we wouldn't play defense on one possession, and the difference in a Quad-A game is usually three or four possessions.”

The strong finish bodes well for the Panthers in 2013-14, but they will go on without their two seniors from this year, Nate Hlozek and Joey Biondo.

“Those two guys have been with us for all four years,” Midgley said.

“They've had some ups and downs, but they fought through, never complained and helped lay the groundwork for what we hope to accomplish.”

Matt Grubba is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-388-5830 or mgrubba@tribweb.com.

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