Basketball: South Forsyth girls get revenge from early-season blowout loss

The South Forsyth girls basketball team avenged a loss from earlier this season by knocking off Lanier 50-46 in dramatic fashion on Friday night.

Lanier’s Mekela Fuller hit a deep three to tie the game at 46 with just over a minute to play. Then, Zoe Maisel answered with a 15-foot jumper that put South (4-2) up 48-46 with 52 seconds remaining. Maisel sank two free throws with 22 seconds to seal the victory for the War Eagles.

“Zoe kept fighting,” South head coach Keith Gravitt said. “She struggled a little bit with her shot throughout the game. I know she had 18, but she very easily could’ve had 25 or 30. She missed some little shots around the goal that she’s made in games this year, but she keeps working hard and keeps making her defender work hard. A lot of that has to do with her teammates too. They look to her and they have confidence in her to make those shots.”

This game went back-and-forth all night. There were two ties and 10 lead changes in the game, and South’s biggest lead of the night was just five points.

Maisel led the War Eagles with 18 points, while Sara Idris also scored 12. Bailey Bassette led the Longhorns (6-2) with 16 points.

The last time these two teams met was in a Thanksgiving tournament in Dawson County, and Lanier destroyed South 74-46, but things were a little different this time around.

“We came out of the locker room in the second half more focused than we did last time we played them,” Gravitt said. “We didn’t have a letdown like we did up there. Like I said, the girls played hard every possession, even when it looked like they might get the lead. But we finished the game with a big bucket and a big couple of free throws.”

Lanier 49, South Forsyth boys 35

The South Forsyth boys basketball team was outscored 29-12 by Lanier in the second half as the War Eagles fell on Friday night.

“It was just a bad second half,” South head coach Scott Givens said. “We played well in the first two quarters. You can’t score 12 points in a half in a varsity basketball game and expect to win. You just can’t.”

The War Eagles (2-4) led 23-20 at the half, thanks in large part to some poor shooting from Lanier. The Longhorns (4-2) were 6-for-20 from the field in the first half, including 1-for-6 on threes. South went 9-for-23 from the field in the first half, including 3-for-12 from downtown.

Midway through the third quarter, South went on a quick 6-0 run to take a 31-27 lead, but they hit a wall after that. The Longhorns outscored the War Eagles 22-4 in the game’s final 12 minutes.

“We had a lot of good looks that weren’t going in,” Givens said. “We had a lot of silly turnovers in the second half. We handled their pressure well for two quarters, and for the most part, three quarters. But it started to get away from us in the third quarter. Again, a 4-point quarter in the fourth quarter. You ain’t gonna win many ball games scoring 35 points. Not at this level.”

Lanier had two players that scored in double figures. Adrian Martin scored 14 for the Longhorns while the leading scorer, Alex Walker, scored all 16 of his points in the second half. Isaiah Magee led the War Eagles in scoring with 9 points off the bench.

“We’re going to see what kind of character we have,” Givens said. “We’re going to see what kind of competitors we got, because we got Woodstock coming in here tomorrow. I hope we show the pride and competitive spirit that we need to, because this is a short turnaround. Hopefully we can bounce back and play a complete game, offensively and defensively for 32 minutes.”