Franklin Road Academy Boys
Last year, the Panthers from Franklin Road Academy ended their near two decade long drought with a dominating 87 point victory over defending champion Harding Academy. At the helm for all five of the previous championships was Coach David Tucker who retired after last season ended. With a new coach at the helm and almost 100 points lost due to graduation, the Panthers were in a tough spot but ultimately the supporting cast from 2022 became role players in 2023 and FRA was able to defend their title successfully. Here's a breakdown of their scoring:
|Events w/ Multiple Scorers||5||5|
|Total Events Scored||13||11|
Back To Back
Side by side, these teams look pretty even or at least, with these metrics they don't appear to be 36 points apart but when you drill down further you can begin to see how the gap between the teams was created. Outside of the four wins, the Panthers amassed five second place finishes and one third place finish while Harding had just one second and three thirds.
The Panthers were led by Griffin Frankfather (34 open event points) who won the 300m hurdles and Decathlon, Joe Crocker (16 open event points) who placed runner up in both throwing events, and Jonathan Wilson (13 open event points) who placed runner up in the 100m and 4th in the 200m. These individual efforts combined with two team relay wins (4x100m above) were more than enough to secure the victory for the first year man at the helm Coach Allen.
Harding relied heavily on Senior Justin Davis who scored a total of 40 points (essentially half of the team total) during the state competition winning both horizontal jumps, placing runner up in the decathlon, and 3rd in both hurdle events. The Lions just did not have the depth to keep up with the scoring of FRA. That said, this is now the third year in a row these teams have finished in some combination of first and second and I suspect we'll be seeing a similar match up in the years to come. For now, congratulations to the Panthers and Coach Allen on their championship.