Francis Howell North split a girls’ and boys’ doubleheader with Francis Howell Central Friday night as part of North’s first ever athletic Hall of Fame Night.
In the girls’ contest, Francis Howell North claimed a 49-42 victory to improve to 8-8 on the season. In addition, the Knights are now 2-1 in the South Division of the Gateway Athletic Conference.
North jumped out an 18-7 lead at the end of the first quarter. However, it was all Central in the second quarter, as the Spartans held the Knights scoreless to even things at 18 at the half. Even after 3 quarters, the game could have gone either way. The Knights held a 3-point lead going into the final quarter. The fourth proved to be pivotal as North outscored Central 16-12 for a 7-point victory. With the loss, Central dropped to 6-10, and 2-2 in GAC play.
Junior Madison Gillam led the Knights in scoring with 16 points, 12 of those came from 3-pointers.
The Knights will have their next game Thursday when they travel to Troy. Meanwhile, the Spartans see action Monday when they take on a tough Nerinx team.
In between the games, 10 people were inducted into the Francis Howell North Athletic Hall of Fame (the entire first class consists of 12). The inaugural class of North Hall of Famers was headlined by Major League pitcher Mark Buehrle, a 1997 graduate. Buehrle was not in attendance, but his parents represented him.
The other members of the Hall of Fame include Kathy Anderson, Tracy Grose, Erin Hurt-Pollard, Jeremy Iwaszkowiec, Lisa Sweeney, Kendall Emmanuel Matthews, Jackie Pirtle-Hall, Dan Radke, Jason Sexton, Mike Slivinksi, and Chris Sloan.
In the boys’ game, Francis Howell Central’s Ryan Howard rained down 3-pointers at an alarming rate Friday night, ending the game with 29 points as Central downed Howell North 72-41.
The senior missed on his first 3-point attempt of the night. In fact, he missed everything on it. After that however, he was lights out. He shined brightest in the second and third quarters, scoring 11 points in each. He ended the night making six 3-pointers.
As a team, Central outscored North 22-4 in the second, and 22-12 in the third to pull away for their third GAC South victory to go with only one loss.
After the game, Central Head Coach Larry Anders spoke about Howard’s game.
“Once he found his range and got the bearings going, he was just lights out.” Anders said. “He’s got that urgency, that senior urgency that we’ve got with him and (Derrick) Puni, and (Terel) Tipton. You know, we’ve got 8 games left in the season, and you know it’s time to get going, and I keep asking, ‘What are we waiting for?’ and tonight we weren’t waiting for anything.”
The Spartans led by 15 points at halftime. According to Anders, they’ve had games like that recently where they have let leads slip away, but tonight was different.
“Our whole focus in that third quarter was we need to double what our lead is, and just keep executing our offense, playing some good defense,” Anders said.
In addition to Howard’s 29, Derrick Puni had 18 and Terel Tipton had 13.
Francis Howell North senior Kyle Lemons, who was averaging 22.7 points a game coming into the contest, was held to just 11 on the night. James Gleeson chipped in 9 and Callen Hall had 7.
Francis Howell Central’s overall record improved to 7-10, and in the GAC South, they are 3-1. Meanwhile, North dropped to 3-12 and 2-2. The Spartans are back in action Tuesday night when they host Ft. Zumwalt West. The Knights look to get back in the win column Tuesday night when they go to Fort Zumwalt North to battle a tough 11-3 Panther team.
The next broadcast on the Westplex Sports Network is Tuesday night when the Francis Howell Vikings host the Lions of Ft. Zumwalt East. The pregame coverage is schedule for 6:20 with a 6:30 tipoff. You can hear the game at www.westplexsports.net.