Forsyth Central was eliminated from the first round of the 7-AAAAA region tournament on Saturday, falling to Northview 57-46 at Sequoyah High School.
Led by Jeremiah Brown, the team’s lone senior, Central charged out to a 33-20 lead in the first two quarters. But when Northview switched to a full-court, man-to-man defense in the second half, Central struggled mightily to create offense. That would ultimately be its downfall.
"We couldn’t score in the second half; we couldn’t make any shots," said Central head coach Greg Dirst. "I’m disappointed, but they just guarded us well. We missed shots we could have made, but we couldn’t get going. We would have been OK if we held them to 55, but we couldn’t score. We turned it over more."
Even though the Bulldogs’ defense held up, they turned the ball over too much, missed too many shots and quickly lost their early momentum.
And as Central’s shooting cooled down, Northview’s heated up.
"We allowed them to shoot from the perimeter in the second half and they made most of their shots," said forward Josiah Laws. "When we needed to score the end of the game we came up short."
Northview certainly had experience on its side: The Titans’s roster is comprised mostly of upperclassmen, while Central relies heavily on its talented but raw sophomores.
Though the Bulldogs are unhappy with their early exit, the future of the program appears bright. Rising juniors Cale Jackson and Laws were both named to the All-Region 7A-AAAAA team, and teammates Eli Brown and Jon Richards, among others, have a lot of potential.
Added Dirst, "It was tough to lose in our first region game, but we’ll move forward next year."