By THOMAS NEFFUnfamiliarity played a big part in the Central Piedmont 4-A opener Friday night between West Forsyth and Dudley. Both teams in the new conference spent the evening making plenty of adjustments before West Forsyth pulled out a 60-51 decision at Dudley.
Dudley opened quickly, building a 9-3 lead on the strength of its inside attack. After West Forsyth began the contest with three turnovers and three missed shots, Billy Quinn came off the bench to connect on two 3-point shots. Quinn's long-range shooting brought his team to within 12-11 at the end of the first quarter.The two teams should have learned plenty about each other's game in the opening period. All four of West Forsyth's field goals came from outside 15 feet while only one of Dudley's baskets came from outside that key area.
After Kenny O'Neal converted two free throws to give West Forsyth its first lead at 15-14, Dudley coach Steve Hankins showed his displeasure by substituting his entire starting five.
Hankins' bench proceeded to outscore West Forsyth 9-4 during its three-minute stint. The Panther starters raised their lead to as many as eight before West Forsyth's Kerry Besecker scored seven points in the last 1:50 of the half to cut the Dudley lead to four at 30-26.
The second half was a nightmare for Dudley as the Panthers were outscored 20-10. The combination of West Forsyth's improved outside shooting and the Panthers' inability to get the ball inside to Dell Seagraves enabled the visitors to take a 46-40 lead into the final quarter.
West also packed in its defense, surrounding Dell Seagraves enough that the Panther center could manage only four second-half points.
A 9-0 West Forsyth run early in the fourth quarter, keyed by Patrick King's six points, put the game out of Dudley's reach.
``We are doing nothing fundamentally sound,' said Hankins. ``I have never coached a team with this much talent that played this bad. We were a better team on the first day of practice than we are now.'
Besecker led West Forsyth, now 5-3 overall, with 18 points. King finished with 14 points and Quinn chipped in 13. Seagraves led the 5-4 Panthers with 12 points.
West Forsyth's girls raised their record to 9-0 by defeating Dudley 42-34. Despite trailing throughout the contest, the Panthers did make three serious bids to overtake West Forsyth. A 3-pointer by Tamika Slade with 1:25 remaining brought Dudley to within three at 37-34 before West Forsyth's Kim Jessup iced the game by connecting on three free throws. BOYSWEST FORSYTH 11152014-60 DUDLEY 12181011-51
WEST FORSYTH - Kerry Besecker 18, Gray Bovender 2, Mark Passerallo 3, Kenny O'Neal 6, Jeff Rhoades 4, Patrick King 14, Billy Quinn 13.
DUDLEY - Chuck Kirkpatick 8, Glen Hayes 4, Brian Seagraves 5, Willie Grainger 2, Lee Huntley 5, Dell Seagraves 12, Chuck Lownes 4, Damon Newman 5, Derek Edwards 6. GIRLSWEST FORSYTH 8 137 14-42 DUDLEY 7 8 8 11-34