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Basketball: Forsyth Central sweeps past Gainesville, into quarterfinals
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Forsyth Central senior Eli Chol knocks down one of his five 3-pointers Friday during the Bulldogs' 54-45 win against Gainesville in the Region 6-7A tournament quarterfinals. - photo by David Roberts

Forsyth Central swept past Gainesville and into the Region 6-7A tournament quarterfinals Friday, as the Bulldogs' girls won 45-27 and the boys beat the Red Elephants 54-45.

Eli Chol erupted for 33 points in the nightcap, showing off his versatility by knocking down five 3-pointers. Chol was also active in the paint, blocking six shots and pulling down four rebounds. Central raced out to a 29-11 halftime lead thanks to Chol's hot shooting and collective rebounding by Cody Howell, Cade Chitty and Camden Leak. 

The Bulldogs capped a 20-0 run that stretched from the first quarter into the second quarter when Chol blocked a shot at the rim, then hustled up the court and drained a 3-pointer from the top of the key. 

Chol sank two more threes after halftime, part of a 13-point third quarter for Central's 6-foot-10 power forward.

Gainesville cut the deficit to 51-43 with 2:50 left to play after a Charlie Reisman 3-pointer. Reisman had just two points at halftime but finished with 15 to help rally the Red Elephants in the second half. 

Gainesville played without Julius Jackson for much of the final quarter after he fouled out with 7:12 left in the game. Jackson tied for the team lead with 15 points.

Central [14-12] completes the three-game sweep of Gainesville and will face North Forsyth at 4:30 p.m. Saturday in the Region 6-7A tournament quarterfinals. The winner will advance to the semifinals and lock up a spot in the Class 7A playoffs.

Central's girls basketball team dominated the Red Elephants 45-27 to earn its second win of the season.

Eight different players scored for the Bulldogs, with Taylor Jackson and Jillian Bretz sharing the team lead with 11 points each.

Central scored the first nine points of the game and held Gainesville off the scoreboard completely until Julia Payne's free throw with 3:03 left in the first quarter. Central held the Red Elephants without a field goal until 3:57 before halftime.

By then, Central had taken a commanding 15-2 lead, turning steals into quick buckets. Jackson's steal and layup two minutes into the game gave Central a 6-0 lead and forced a Gainesville timeout. Moments later, Emma Barnes scored off a steal, then ended the quarter with a putback.

Keke Jones' 3-pointer halfway through the second quarter marked the Red Elephants' lone points of the quarter. Meanwhile, Christina Ajorgbor provided a physical presence in the paint, racking up five first-half rebounds and adding six points and a steal, helping Central into halftime with a 37-16 lead.

Central showed off its depth in the second half, as Lily Deluca [4 points], Gianna Roberty [4 points], Hailey Berman [3 points] and Abby Lamm [2 points] each came off the bench to score. Ajorgbor finished with six points and Barnes added four.

Central [2-23] wins the season series against Gainesville and will face South Forsyth at 3 p.m. Saturday in the Region 6-7A tournament quarterfinals. The winner will advance to the semifinals and earn a spot in the Class 7A playoffs.