MAGGIE MULLIS

Commerce's Maggie Mullis, shown here last year, clinched the Tigers' win over Franklin County Saturday (Dec. 5) with two free throws with 16 seconds left. 

Commerce’s Maggie Mullis sank two free throws with 16 seconds left to clinch a 41-39 win at Franklin County Saturday (Dec. 5), the Tigers’ first of the year.

Mullis’ free throws gave Commerce a 41-36 lead. Franklin County hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer for the final margin.

“We have honestly improved in every game we have played so far,” Commerce coach Brad Puckett said. “The fight these girls have … showed up again Saturday in Franklin County.”

Mullis finished with 11 points, while Raven Parks added nine points and Bryanna Sanders finished with eight points.

Commerce won the the game despite struggling in the first half. The team trailed 22-13 at the break “and had not played well at all,” Puckett said.

“We were out of control in the first half, rushing shots, getting out rebounded and out worked,” he said.

The Tigers experienced a drastic turnaround in the third quarter, outscoring Franklin County 19-2 to take a 32-24 lead into the fourth quarter. The Lions, however, made a run in the fourth quarter as the team swapped leads in the last two minutes, until Commerce went ahead by five after Mullis’ free throws.

The Tigers play Oconee County twice this week, facing the Warriors Tuesday (Dec. 8, 6 p.m.) at home and again Thursday (Dec. 10, 6 p.m.) on the road.

“We have back-to-back games with Oconee coming up this week,” Puckett said. “Another quality girls basketball team and another much bigger school. The girls are focused on getting better everyday ,’win every day’ we call it … On the court, win every drill at practice by competing hard and finishing every drill with 100% effort and during games to try and win every play in between whistles.”

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