WOOSTER, Ohio – The Franklin College women's basketball team wrapped up a weekend trip east, taking on host Wooster College in the final game of the 2018 Nan Nichols Classic.
Four Grizzlies (1-2) reached double figures on the afternoon, but Franklin was done in by a fourth quarter rally by the Scots (2-1) that led to an 89-80 Wooster win. For the second straight game, freshman Britney Ballard led the scoring for Franklin, pouring in 15 points and grabbing six rebounds. The Columbus, Ind.-native was named to the all-tournament team for her efforts over the weekend after averaging 14 points and 5.5 rebounds.
Franklin jumped out to an early 10-4 lead before both offenses caught fire over the final six minutes of the opening quarter. Wooster rallied back to take the lead late in the period, but Ballard would close the gap to one with a three late in the quarter, making it 26-25 Scots after one.
The second quarter saw the Grizzlies keep up the scoring pace while the Scots cooled off a bit. The Grizzlies rattled off an 11-0 run to turn a two-point lead into a 48-35 advantage with 2:16 to go in the half. Franklin shot 50 percent from the floor in the opening half, taking a 52-43 lead into the locker room.
Wooster trimmed the lead down to four early in the third quarter, but Franklin would extend their advantage back to double figures when Bayleigh Walker knocked down a jumper to make it 60-50 with 6:29 to play in the quarter. The Scots would keep the game from getting out of hand, closing the deficit to 70-64 when the third quarter ended.
Ashlin Aycock opened the fourth quarter with a bucket to stretch the Franklin lead to eight, but the Grizzlies would go cold the rest of the night. Wooster rattled off a 14-2 run over a six-minute stretch to re-take the lead, but a Mallory Cast three brought the Grizzlies within a point at 78-77 with 3:38 to play. But Franklin couldn't find a rhythm on the offensive end the rest of the night, knocking down just one field goal the rest of the way.
Franklin shot 40 percent (26-for-65) on the afternoon, going 4-for-16 from deep and 24-for-29 from the free throw line. Cast finished with 14 points, Jessica Nix had a season-high 13 points and Walker added 10 points for the Grizzlies.
Rebounds were 43-41 in Wooster's favor, with second chance points 16-6 in favor of the Scots. Walker's seven rebounds led all Franklin players with Nix setting a season-high with six boards. Nix and Aycock tied for the team lead with four assists each for Franklin.
The Grizzlies will have seven days until their next contest, which takes place on Sunday, Nov. 25 at Wittenberg University. Tip-off is set for 2:00 p.m.