The seniors on Forsyth Central's boys basketball team can check another item off their to-do list.
Central beat West Forsyth 55-45 on Tuesday for senior night, which marked the Bulldogs' first win against West since January 2017.
Central head coach Brandon Hutchins said it was the first time the senior class had beaten the Wolverines (7-8, 1-4 in region 6-7A) in their four-year career with the Bulldogs.
“We kept nine seniors and most of them have been in the program all four years,” Hutchins said. “ To do this at home on senior night is special. That team is very well coached. They play hard, they’re scrappy. That was a very big win for us.”
Central (5-8, 3-3 Region 6-7A) was in control of the game on both sides of the ball, outscoring West in every quarter.
Senior Dylan Carter led the Bulldogs with 15 points despite finding himself in foul trouble early, sitting out for most of the second half and eventually fouling out with four minutes left in the game.
“When one of our key scorers goes out and basically doesn’t play the entire second half, it’s gonna take some guys to step up and that’s exactly what we had tonight,” Hutchins said.
Eli Chol and Usman Barry shared the majority of the second-half scoring for the Bulldogs.
Barry scored 12 points and led the Bulldogs with four assists. Chol collected a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds. He was tenacious on defense all night, blocking three shots and stealing the ball three times as well.
“With Eli, the sky’s the limit,” Hutchins said. “He’s got a bright future.”
As a team, Central stole the ball nine times throughout the game and never let West get in a strong offensive rhythm. West was able to narrow the deficit down to three points in the third quarter, but Central forced several turnovers and killed any offensive momentum the Wolverines were gaining.
West head coach Frederick Hurt was displeased with his team’s effort after the game, saying that the things they needed to work on in practice was “a long list.”
“We looked very unorganized, which is a reflection of our coaching,” Hurt said after the game. “We look like we’ve never practiced against a zone. You’re not gonna win too many varsity games only scoring 45 points. Not a lot to like.”
The big men for the Wolverines stepped up offensively tonight. Jake Mooney led all scorers with 18 points, 13 of those happening in the second half. Russell Miller broke double digits with 10 points of his own.
Tonight’s victory did not change anything in the Region 6-7A standings for either team, but Hutchins said he believes this Central team has a strong chance to qualify for the Class 7A state tournament.
“We’ve got to play good defense, control the tempo on offense and play as a team,” Hutchins said. “We’re 3-3 in the region, and I bet nobody would have thought that Forsyth Central would have won three games at this point.”
West continues its season on Friday at Denmark (10-6, 5-1 Region 6-7A). Central will rest this Friday, then also travel to Denmark on Tuesday.