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Last Thursday night, Feb. 9, Franklin High School honored their senior athletes before the Panthers basketball teams took on Tuscola in their last regular season home game of the season.

All winter athletes were recognized at center court prior to the game. Both basketball teams dropped their regular season finale to the Mountaineers.



Franklin High School will recognize this year’s FHS court this Saturday. The court members were nominated by the teachers of FHS and the winner was voted on by the FHS student body.

The crowning will take place on February 18 in the FHS gymnasium around 8:30 p.m. A dance will follow the crowning ceremony.


Franklin High School Varsity Volleyball head coach, Anna Shields – an 18 year veteran of Panthers athletics – stepped down from her coaching position on Tuesday, Feb. 14. The veteran coach decided it was the right time to hand the program over to another person, expressing her desire to focus on her family. Shields will continue to teach physical education at Franklin High School.

Shields, a Bryson City native, played volleyball, basketball, and ran track for the Swain County Maroon Devils in high school. Shields received a scholarship to Western Carolina University. She opted to play volleyball for the Catamounts. for four years, and graduated in 1984.


The stands were full at Highlands’ gymnasium last Saturday evening, where fans and community members came together to honor Butch Smart, long-time head coach of Highlands’ boys basketball team and athletics director. After the Lady Highlanders soundly defeated Tallulah Falls for the second time this year, 52-39, current and former players, school officials, and residents gathered at center court to show their respects to the high school hoops coach who is hanging it up after more than four decades of directing teams from the bench.


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