Athlete of the Year | Incline’s Molly Franklin a cut above her competition | SierraSun.com

Athlete of the Year | Incline’s Molly Franklin a cut above her competition

Sylas Wright
swright@sierrasun.com

The Bonanza's Female Athlete of the Year from Incline High School is not a typical selection in that she played only one sport.

It's a testament to just how well she played it.

"Molly definitely had an impressive high school career," said Incline girls basketball coach Indra Winquest, whose standout guard stood out as one of the most dominant player in the state.

Franklin indeed enjoyed a fine run for the Highlanders.

A three-year varsity player, she received two Northern Division III MVP awards and three selections to the All-League first team. She helped lead Incline to the Division III state title her junior year and a league title and state berth as the leader of a young team her senior year.

Few players in the league could contain Franklin. She drained 3-pointers with the best of them and used her quickness, and 5-foot-9 length, to slice through defenses and score in the paint. Her defense led to even more offense, as she sprung into passing lanes and swiped basketballs from opposing guards' hands and scored on fast breaks.

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As a result of that versatile offensive game, Franklin averaged 21.6 points per game, which was second highest in the state among all divisions.

It was that scoring ability that attracted Al Aldridge, head women's basketball coach at Clark College in Oregon. Franklin will join the Clark College program — which is among the most competitive in the nation among junior colleges — this fall.

"I think she's going to be a special player for us," Aldridge said. "She's a scorer, she's not just a shooter, which is kind of nice. She also has a good work ethic and she's a winner."

While Franklin achieved high school career highs her senior year, her four-year tenure with the Highlanders was highlighted by Incline's state championship when she was a junior. On a team full of standout players, Franklin was named MVP of the title game after scoring 20 points in a 53-38 win over perennial power Pershing County. That Incline team finished 25-3 overall

Franklin also was named league MVP as a sophomore, when she averaged 15.3 points a game. As a junior she made first team All-League, averaging 14.9 points.

"We're excited to get her," Aldridge said. "I think we're fortunate."