Franklin and Calvert Preparing for State Semifinals

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Two area high school girls basketball teams are aiming for state titles in Austin, and they're only separated by 12 miles.

Robertson County has a lot to be proud about this year in high school athletics.

Both Franklin and Calvert made it to the state quarterfinals this year in football, and both are now in the state semifinals in girls' basketball.

The Franklin girls made school history Saturday, when they beat Crawford in the 2A Region 3 championship game in Nacogdoches.

It's very exciting, because not only are we the first team to make state in girls, we're the first team to make state in anything," Franklin junior guard Kyla Walker said.

Now, excited as they are, the Lady Lions have another challenge ahead of them when they face five-time defending state champion Brock.

"We don't have anything to lose. We're the underdogs here," said junior Shelby Mullinnix. "We're just going to give it our best and see what happens."

Junior Regan Blajeski added, "We always like to go in and beat people, especially being the underdogs and it's a really great experience and we'll go into this game thinking we can do it too."

Just up the road in Calvert, still in Robertson County, the Lady Trojans are also practicing, getting ready for a state semifinal game on Friday. The Lady Trojans are headed to Austin for the first time since 2007.

"We've worked real hard and the kids have put in a lot of time to be successful and achieve this goal," said Calvert head coach Isaac Wells. "They've worked extremely hard and put up with the push from me and demands from me and they've answered every day in practice and, of course, it's shown up on the floor."

Like Franklin, the Lady Trojans have fast-breaked and pressured their way to Austin. They have gone over the 70 point mark in 15 of their 25 games this season.

Lady Trojan senior Raquel Wortham said, "We've had teams come to us and say you must be some world class runners because we run and gun everywhere we go. We practiced the boys one day and we were running and gunning with them. That's all we do is run. That's the key word: running."

Calvert will be the newcomer to the state tournament. The Lady Trojans face Highland in the semifinals Friday. The Lady Hornets are making their second straight trip to state, and the other semi features Lipan (7) and Nazareth (23), who have made it to state a combined 30 times.

I'm really looking forward to it because it's about time that we be heard once again. We're Calvert Trojans, and we do have the skills and we have the ability to play. We're ready to go out there and show what we can do," said freshman guard Cydnei Wells.

Franklin will face Brock Friday at 10 a.m. Calvert takes on Highland Friday at 1:30 p.m.

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