MANSFIELD — The final time the Franklin Excessive ladies basketball crew misplaced a sport was March 12, 2019, within the Div. 1 state semifinal towards Springfield Central.
That is two years and 11 months because the Panthers final tasted defeat. A complete of 1,066 days. However for those who speak to Franklin ladies basketball coach John Leighton concerning the streak, he has no clue.
“I would not know what number of video games it has been,” mentioned Leighton following the Panthers’ 51st consecutive victory, a 65-34 win over Mansfield Friday night time. “That quantity is cool for individuals who aren’t in it. Most of those children had been in center college when that began, so it doesn’t suggest a factor to them. They’re simply enjoying now.”
Franklin (16-0) nonetheless has 4 gamers who had been sophomores when the streak began in the course of the 2019-20 season. However Leighton has made positive that his crew focuses on the duty at hand.
“(The streak) is there,” senior Olivia Quinn mentioned. “However each sport we go into is only one sport at a time and that is how we’re taking a look at it. So each sport is the subsequent sport. As soon as we get that win it’s on to the subsequent one.”
“Coach simply teaches us to dwell within the second,” added senior Stefany Padula, who scored 9 factors within the win over the Hornets. “Simply concentrate on every sport as they arrive.”
Preserving the streak hasn’t at all times been straightforward. The Panthers have had a few shut calls this season with a 51-48 extra time win over Oliver Ames on Dec. 20 and a 51-47 win over Foxborough on Jan. 18. Franklin has used these two video games as studying experiences.
“It is good preparation, too, for the match,” mentioned junior Katie Peterson who scored a game-high 17 factors. “Once we get to those harder video games, we’ll have some expertise in that setting.”
“I believe the advantage of the crew, too, is that we do not simply depend on one individual,” Padula added. “It is a crew effort virtually each single sport.”
That depth is what Leighton thinks is vital to the Panthers’ success over the past 51 video games.
“You may’t do what we’re doing with only one or two children,” Leighton mentioned. “You simply cannot. Everybody has had an off night time. Everyone seems to be human and that’s what steadiness and depth provides us.”
Living proof, on Friday night time, Quinn was restricted to simply 5 factors as she encountered foul bother all through the sport. Her teammates picked her up.
“That is completely one of the best feeling ever,” Quinn mentioned. “I can at all times depend on them (to step up). Steph hit a 3 and Katie obtained an and-1, so it is superior to know that my teammates will at all times step up.”
“I really feel like we’re a really well-rounded crew that works exhausting,” Peterson added. “We are able to depend on anybody to select up some slack and canopy for those who are in foul bother or must get off the courtroom.”
Leighton credit his program’s success over the past three years to the Franklin Youth Basketball program.
“I begin with a loaded deck,” Leighton mentioned. “I deserve zero credit score. That’s the reason our youth program is important. To have that a lot expertise and the basketball IQ on this city is absolutely excessive and I am the beneficiary of it.”
The Panthers by no means trailed in Friday’s contest, enjoying with solely two ties within the first quarter at 6-6, following a 3-pointer by Abby Wagner and 8-8 after a layup by Kara Santos.
Franklin then completed the primary quarter on an 11-4 run to go into the second quarter with a 19-12 lead. Mansfield then went on a 9-5 run to chop its deficit to inside three, however the Panthers closed out the primary half on a 7-0 run to go into the break with a 31-21 lead.
Ethan Winter is a senior multimedia sports activities journalist on the Each day Information. He could be reached at [email protected] Observe him on Twitter @EWints.
This text initially appeared on MetroWest Each day Information: Franklin ladies basketball extends win-streak to 51 straight video games