By MacKenzie Bates
For the Forsyth County News
Whether it was Michael Zabetakis hitting outside shots, Terrence Taylor getting to the rim or Andrew Stanton grabbing big rebounds in big moments, the West Forsyth boys basketball team was determined to go out a winner in its final home game of the season.
Zabetakis scored a game-high 21 points, while Taylor had 10 points and Stanton chipped in with eight as the Wolverines defeated North Forsyth 74-54 on Tuesday night.
“We’re happy that all three seniors played well tonight,” West head coach Fred Hurt said. “We don’t want to change who we are because it was senior night. We try to always play for each other, but on this night, we try to play for the seniors a little more.”
After a back and forth first period that bled over in to the second, baskets by Joseph Staiti, Broc Bidwell and Zabetakis helped West (14-9, 7-1 Region 5-7A) end the first half on a 14-0 run to lead 33-21 at halftime.
“There was a stretch where they were getting open shots but they weren’t making them,” Hurt said. “A lot that stretch had to do with our defense and Jack Bock sparked us and that got us going. Things became a little easier on the offensive end for us after that.”
North (6-17, 1-8) made some adjustments in the locker room to get in to a rhythm on offense. Corey Seitz played a big role in the rally, scoring nine of his 13 points in the second half, including a few free throws to cut the lead to six at 43-37.
“He’s been playing three quarters in (junior varsity), and tonight he was really good when he gets the ball deep in the post,” Coach Brian Moon said.
A basket and a foul for Zabetakis helped extend the lead along with baskets from Taylor and Staiti pushed the lead back to double digits to end the third quarter.
Staiti added 18 points for West, which earned its 10th straight victory. Jonathan Pefanis scored 14 points for North.
North Forsyth girls 68, West Forsyth 25
Fourteen different players scored for North Forsyth as they remained perfect in region play with a strong win over West Forsyth on Tuesday night.
Senior Catherine Shope had 11 points, while Amber Jones and Ansley Allen each tallied nine for the Lady Raiders (22-2, 9-0 Region 5-7A). Kate Perryman chipped in with eight points and four rebounds in the victory.
“We talked to our team about making the right basketball plays tonight,” North head coach Eric Herrick said. “The easy kick out, the extra pass, not having to force any shots. For the most part, we did that.”
West Forsyth (4-20, 2-7) honored its three seniors, Allyson Drawdy, Emma Gran and Nicole Toole, after the game.
“They’ve been through the highest of highs, on being on the final four team and making that journey, to what they’ve been through this season,” West head coach David May said. “They’re leaders for the program and in the building. This school is going to miss them.”
North forced 19 turnovers, with 14 on steals, led by Cassie Markle’s five takeaways. The Raiders also had 34 rebounds, 22 of them offensive to create second chance opportunities.
Still, Herrick wants to see his team get better with the postseason looming.
“We need to be a better half-court team,” Herrick said. “We’re not going to turn over great teams in the full court. So we’ve got to be able to score when we’re not pressing.”
Maggie Qunicy paced the Lady Wolverines with eight points. Haylee Dornan scored seven points.