The Pioneers put on the armor for their final game of the season against the Dragons of Franklin County. The Dragons gave it their best shot against a resilient Pioneer offense, but the Franklin North defense struggled to cover both the inside and the outside shooting of WCMS.
The Pioneers defeated Franklin North, 55-46.
Micah Webster led all scorers with a game-high 18 points. He saved his best for last and scored eight of his 18 in the fourth quarter.
The fourth quarter started with WCMS on top 37-31 after a dismal eight-point third quarter by the Pioneers. Whatever the Pioneer coaches told their team, it worked.
WCMS came out on a mission and the Dragons could not breathe fire. It did not matter to Webster who was deep inside the belly of the defense. Webster scored in close for two and earned his final six points from the free-throw line.
When the inside was closed off, the ball was skipped back outside to Eli Jones who dropped his fourth 3-pointer over the Dragon defense. Help came too late and Jerry Mrema was fouled on his way to the basket and shot 3-of-4 from the line and Dante Elam slipped free for another two points.
The loss was not for lack of effort by the Dragons. A 15-point, fourth-quarter effort was not quite enough to strip WCMS of the lead. Mason Mitchell battled inside and led Franklin North with six points.
The Dragons outscored the Pioneers 11-8 in the third quarter as it was the lowest scoring quarter of the game for WCMS. Cameron Reed got busy against the Pioneer defense and scored four after the halftime break.
On the Pioneer side of the ball, Eli Jones was dead on from behind the arch for the third time in the game. Carter Mansfield worked against the Dragon defense and got his first basket of the game in the third and Eli Buchanan hit 1-of-2 from the free-throw line. At the end of three, Franklin North trimmed the lead to 37-31.
The first half of the game was dominated by WCMS and the Dragon defense was slow to react and the Pioneer offense fired on all cylinders. WCMS opened the first quarter with a 17-point blast. Jones hit from deep twice and Jacob Lann made a quick move to the basket and scored twice.
In the second quarter, it was Jerry Mrema and Webster who pulled the Pioneers through the trenches and Brady Gross added a free throw before the end of the first half and WCMS led at the half 29-20.
PIONEER SCORING – Micah Webster 18, Eli Jones 12, Jacob Lann 7, Jerry Mrema 7, Dante Elam 5, Carter Mansfield 4, Brady Gross 1, Eli Buchanan 1
DRAGON SCORING – Cameron Reed 11, Trey Morton 11, Mason Mitchell 10, Luke Owens 7, Grant King 6.