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Basketball: Lambert boys improve tournament positioning with win over West
Will Baker
Lambert senior Will Baker, left, draws a foul against West Forsyth senior Nick Zabetakis during Friday's 72-51 win against the Wolverines. - photo by David Roberts

By Josh Holland

For the Forsyth County News

Lambert’s boys basketball team rebounded from its first loss of the calendar year to take another step toward a top-two seed in the Region 5-7A tournament.

The Longhorns carried a 10-point lead into halftime, but West Forsyth wasn’t out of contention until the Longhorns opened the second half on an 11-0 run that put the game out of reach for West.

The Wolverines tried to fight back, but couldn’t get open shots because of a lockdown Lambert defense. 

Lambert won 72-51 on Friday night in a game where creating high-percentage shot opportunities was key. 

In the first quarter, West came out with more energy, but Lambert hung around and took the lead by the end of the quarter. Before halftime, Lambert assembled a run sparked by Braxton Beaty’s and Colin Granger’s ability to score points in the paint. 

Jack Bock
West Forsyth senior Jack Bock, top, puts up a shot over Lambert senior Colin Granger during Friday's 72-51 loss to the Longhorns. - photo by David Roberts

The senior pair of Beaty and Granger scored a combined 38 points and all of their points came from layups and free throws. West didn’t have a strong enough inside presence to slow down Lambert’s relentless attack of the rim and they slowly fell further behind. 

After Lambert’s 11-0 scoring run to start the second half, West started to close the gap but couldn’t hold their momentum long enough to mount a comeback. By the fourth quarter, the game was out of reach and Lambert took care of the ball and eased to a big win. 

Lambert head coach Scott Bracco praised his players’ performance in a key game for region tournament seeding.

“West has a good team,” Bracco said. “Our guys just had to lock in and stay disciplined on the defensive end tonight. I’m just proud of the guys on senior night. I think we played with great energy and effort. I was proud of the way we played defense today. Just an overall team effort.”

West Forsyth’s head coach Frederick Hurt spoke highly of Lambert’s performance but was also frustrated with his team’s inability to score.

“It was a combination of shot selection (and) missing the shots we did get,” Hurt said. “There was a whole bunch of things. Hats off to them, because I thought they played really well. They utilized their advantages and we struggled to score the ball at times.”

Lambert advanced to 15-8 this season and 5-3 in the region while West is 17-6 overall and 5-3 in the region.