The Forbush boys basketball program continued to roll, fighting through fatigue to rattle off three wins, extending their winning streak to five games. Here’s how they did it.
Forbush 72 – Wilkes Central 59
EAST BEND (12/8/15) — Looking to extend its winning streak to three games, Forbush started the week strong with a 72-59 win over Wilkes Central.
Wilkes Central led after 19-14 after the first quarter, but Head Coach Jody Christopherson stayed calm and made the right adjustment early that won them the game.
“The biggest adjustment was that we switched from a 1-2-2 zone to a 2-3. When we switched to a 2-3 we held them to 4 points in the second quarter,” Christopherson said.
Meanwhile, the Falcons put on 21 points to lead 36-25 at halftime. It took some grit out of some key players, including senior Carson Matthews, who was battling through sickness, and junior point guard Micah Cranfill, who taped his fingers up after breaking one on each hand.
“It was a good win, it was an ugly win, but at Forbush we’ll take those,” Christopherson said. “The West Wilkes game, our first win in this streak taught us how to win, and I think now they’ve got a taste of it and I think that momentum’s going to keep carrying them forward. They believe they can win now for the first time.”
Carson Matthews, Hunter Chapman and Logan Lineberry all added to the scoring frenzy, with Matthews scoring 23, Chapman scoring 20, and Lineberry scoring 18. They also shot well at the free throw line, with Lucas Kennedy shooting 6-6.
Forbush 78 – East Wilkes 55
RONDA (12/9/15) — Forbush put out a high powered offense Wednesday night, making its win over the East Wilkes Cardinals almost look easy.
The Falcons piled on 20-plus points every single quarter except for the fourth for a dominating 78-55 win. Junior Logan Lineberry and senior Hunter Chapman each had double digit points, with Lineberry scoring 21, and Chapman scoring 22. Lineberry also added seven assists on the night. What the Falcons struggled at with their 3-point range, they made up for by penetrating the inside, or capitalizing on quick transition to get two easy points.
“I thought we had a size advantage tonight and we really tried to utilize that. We got out to the break real good, we were releasing somebody almost every shot to try to get some transition easy baskets which I think we did a little bit,” Christopherson said.
Size helped them offensively, but even more so defensively, as the Falcons had 31 defensive rebounds, and 43 total. Chapman was selected by Christopherson as the player of the game.
The win moved them to a 5-3 record overall.
Forbush 59 – Starmount 53
BOONVILLE (12/11/15) — History was made in Boonville Friday night, and it was anything and everything the Forbush faithful could have hoped for.
Leading 39-35 after the third quarter, the Forbush Falcons went on a 10-2 run in the first 4:30 of the fourth quarter and hung on for a 59-53 win over the Rams. The two teams traded the lead throughout the night, but in the end, it was Forbush who got the win, sweeping Starmount in the regular season for the first time since 2004.
“It means so much to beat them. A county rivalry… it’s the first time we’ve swept Starmount in the regular season since L.D Williams and the crowd that made it far, so that’s pretty special,” Christopherson said.
Forbush fans know L.D Williams’ name well. Williams would go on to play college basketball at Wake Forest, but before then, he was on the last Forbush team to complete the Starmount sweep. The player of that game was easily Williams, and the player of the game this time around was senior Carson Matthews, whose 12 points in the fourth quarter propelled them to the win.
“The first half we were so stagnant on offense, and in the second half we were cutting, penetrating, and attacking the basket,” Matthews said. “Last time ever playing Starmount, that’s enough motivation right there.”
“We made an emphasis on trying to get the ball inside to Carson,” Christopherson said. “We just challenged them, got out on them and man-to-man pressure defense, they got us out of our zone. We weren’t going to stand around and make it a shooting contest.”
Matthews finished the game with 22 points, junior Logan Lineberry had 13 points and senior Hunter Chapman had 11. Senior Lucas Kennedy also had 11 points, with 9 of them coming off of 3-pointers. The win extended their winning streak to five games, and to a 6-3 record overall.
“It feels good being a senior and going out like that against Starmount,” Kennedy said. “Our confidence is high right now. We’re playing good ball and we hope to continue that.”
Following the win, the team has a game Wednesday night against Davie before playing next Monday night against Calvary Baptist Day. Over the past few seasons the team has struggled to accumulate five wins in an entire season, and to be past that point and on a roll before conference play begins, Christopherson had every reason to be ecstatic after the game.
“It’s incredible. I’m so happy for them and I’m so happy for our fans. [The team] just had that look that said, ‘Hey coach, I’m gonna get it done.’ Every win’s not always pretty, but they had that look and I knew that desire. I look back at those overtime losses and they taught us the little things. Just the little things to be a winner, and now they’ve got it.”
Ryan DeCosta can be reached at 336-258-4052 or via Twitter @rsdecosta.