South Forsyth boys 58, Habersham Central 55
Habersham Central 17 8 20 10 — 55
South Forsyth 13 16 14 15 — 58
Habersham: Kinsey 19, Black 11.
South Forsyth: Cole 19, Sewing 11, Smith 10, McCorkle 7.
The South Forsyth boys couldn’t seem to shake Habersham Central; or, looking at it another way, Habersham couldn’t pull away from South.
In a game that featured 15 lead changes, in which neither side led by more than seven, it was South that did just enough down the stretch.
Matt McCorkle was fouled on a three-point attempt with less than a minute to play and hit all three attempts to put the War Eagles ahead for good as South held on, 58-55, at home on Tuesday night for its first win of the season.
South (1-6 overall, 1-3 Region 6-AAAAAA) led by four at halftime, but a 20-point Habersham third quarter gave the Raiders a two-point lead entering the fourth.
“We’ve been talking a lot about managing momentum,” South coach Manson Hill said. “In the third quarter, we missed some defensive assignments, but we came back in the fourth quarter and made some plays … I feel like we’re going in the right direction.”
The War Eagles missed 10 of 12 attempts from three-point range, but South took advantage of an undersized Habersham (3-3, 1-3) team to grab 17 offensive rebounds.
Evan Cole led South with 21 points on a variety of layups and putbacks. Zach Sewing added 11, Chason Smith finished with 10 and McCorkle scored seven points for the War Eagles.
“Rebounding is one of the first things we always talk about,” Hill said. “We’re not always the greatest shooting team and we’re still working on the turnover thing, but for two years now, we’ve rebounded the ball well. It’s one of those areas where, if it’s not there on a given night, we’re usually going to get beat.”
Habersham went cold in the fourth quarter — the Raiders missed their first four attempts from deep, until Decellis Outlaw sunk a meaningless buzzer-beater, and Mason Kinsey’s three free-throw misses didn’t help matters. Kinsey led Habersham with 19 points.
“That was our first win, and we feel like we’re improving,” Hill said. “I’ve been through this at three programs now. It takes time and confidence to learn how to win. I know it’s coach-speak to say we’re teaching them to make each play as important as the next, but it’s the truth.”
South Forsyth girls 68, Habersham Central 37
South jumped on visiting Habersham Central early with a 25-9 first quarter, and it didn’t get much better from there for the Lady Raiders.
The Lady War Eagles’ starters pushed South’s lead to 32 after three quarters and sat the rest of the way as Keith Gravitt’s team downed Habersham, 68-37, on Tuesday night.
Sarah Myers led all scorers with 24 points, including 11 in the third quarter. Ally Welch scored eight of her 11 points in the first quarter, and junior point guard KK Storms tallied all seven of her points in the decisive opening minutes.
Caroline Diem added nine points and Shelby Threlkeld had seven as nine different South players scored.
Lainey Gosnell (10 points) was the only player in double-figures for the Lady Raiders.