Harding Academy claims Ark. Boys Class 3A title

LITTLE ROCK (AP) - Will Francis scored 10 points in the second half as the Harding Academy Wildcats held off the Little Rock Episcopal Collegiate Wildcats 45-40 for the boys Arkansas Class 3A State Championship.

Francis finished with 17 points, eight rebound and five assists in Friday's game as Harding Academy (28-6) won its first state title. Francis, who was the most valuable player when the Wildcats won the 3A football title in December, was named most valuable player.

Harding led 10-9 after one quarter and 22-13 at halftime and never trailed despite repeated charges from ECS.

Episcopal was in the state title game for the first time and was led by freshmen Allie Freeman, Jr., with 17 points.

Harding shot 17 of 36 from the field had only eight turnovers while forcing 14. Episcopal was just 14 of 40 from the field.

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