The New Franklin boys basketball team had every incentive Tuesday night while hosting the Cairo Bearcats in CAC action.
Aside from winning the game at home, the Bulldogs had a chance to clinch the conference title by beating Cairo.
As it turned out, New Franklin wound up winning the game in convincing fashion 66-46 on Senior Night to wrap up the CAC title at 10-1.
While improving to 17-7 on the season, head coach Ross Dobson said the boys gave up a few more points than what he wanted, but they got the job done.
“We clinched the conference title outright on Senior Night, and I couldn’t be more proud of them getting it done,” Dobson said. “It’s been a goal all season to win conference and they accomplished that as a team. They wanted it for one another just not themselves.”
Of course it took a slow first quarter to get the ball rolling for New Franklin. After playing to a 10-10 tie, the Bulldogs came out and outscored Cairo 21-12 to lead at the half 31-22. New Franklin never looked back from that point on in the ballgame by outscoring the Bearcats 35-24 in the second half.
Mason Bailey led three players in double figures for New Franklin with 21 points. Bailey Lyons chipped in 17, Gavin Bishop 10, Tyler Perkins seven, Carter Bailey six, Tyler Hackman three and Kolby Anson with two.
New Franklin also hit on 13 of 19 shots from the foul line for 68 percent.
For Cairo, Ian Denton had 18 and Jacob Davis with 16.
As for the New Franklin girls, they fell at home against Cairo by a score of 59-47.
The Lady Bulldogs, dropping to 7-17 overall and 2-8 in the CAC, led Cairo 19-14 at the end of one. However in the second quarter, Cairo rallied back with a 16-11 advantage to tie the game at 30-all. New Franklin never led again for the rest of the game as Cairo came out and outscored the Lady Bulldogs 29-17 in the second half.
New Franklin coach Morgan Vetter said the girls played great against Cairo. “Tons of energy and heart in the contest, which is what we need especially at this point in the season,” Vetter said. “Even though we didn’t win, it’s definitely a win in our book from all statistical categories.”
Mackenzie Dubbert led the scoring attack in the game for Cairo with 17 points while Keegan Ryan added 14 and Taegan Bartolocci with 12.
For New Franklin, senior Madison Matney tossed in 23 points. Lilly Oser chipped in 10 while Sydney Dowell and Madelyn Chaney added six points each and Lauren Evans with two points.
The Lady Bulldogs also converted on 7 of 14 shots from the foul line for 50 percent while Cairo hit 7 of 11 shots from the line.