Elks cruise past Forbush to stay perfect at halfway mark
by Matthew Gorry
EAST BEND - The Buckin’ Elks breezed past Forbush Tuesday night to cap off a perfect first-half run through the Mountain Valley Conference.
Elkin used a strong second half to pull away from the pesky Falcons en route to a dominant 74-46 victory to stay unbeaten in conference play at 7-0 at the halfway mark.
“Slow first half. We didn’t play bad defense in the first half, they just shot the ball well,” head coach Kenneth Abrams said. “We had a little talk at halftime about our defense and our transition game. We came out in the third quarter and we pressed some and got some easy baskets from Frank Miller.
“Josh Strickland then hit two big threes, and I think that lit a fire,” he continued. “We got into our transition and we just ran; we’re pretty good when we’re running. I’m proud of our kids.”
The Elks started slow as Forbush came out firing.
Barrett Hennings scored six points in the opening quarter - including an ‘and-1’ with 15 seconds remaining - as the Falcons led 14-12 after one.
The Falcons pushed their lead out to as much as six at 23-17 in the second before Elkin responded.
Following Hennings’ bucket at 23-17, the Elks closed the half on a convincing 16-4 run over the final 6:01 to take a 33-27 lead into the break.
Strickland then drilled two treys to open the second half to “light the fire,” as Elkin extended its lead out to 43-31.
The Elks cruised from there, outscoring Forbush 41-19 in the second half. Elkin coasted to the dominating 74-46 victory, setting a season-high in points in the process.
“I didn’t realize we had 70 points. That is a high for us,” Abrams said. “Were we trying to get 70? No. We were just playing basketball. It feels good and the kids are happy about it.”
Frank Miller powered Elkin’s season-high output of points with 17 on the night, while Sam Lane and Trey King added nine points apiece. Calvin Yarboro added eight points, while Josiah Blevins knocked down a pair of threes in the fourth. All 11 players scored on the night for the Elks.
“Everybody played well and everybody scored. We were more disciplined tonight than we were in a long time. I’m hoping it’s coming together,” Abrams said. “I’m pleased with my bench tonight, they played well. My bench played better tonight than they have all season.”
With the win, Elkin pushed its overall record to 10-4 while staying perfect at 7-0 in MVAC action.
The Elks are off tonight before returning on their four-game road trip next week with conference games against West Wilkes and North Wilkes. Elkin heads to Millers Creek Tuesday night to take on the Blackhawks before traveling to Hays to battle the Vikings.
Despite the perfect record, Abrams said the team is not overlooking anybody on their schedule.
“Pretty good locker room in there. We’re pleased,” he explained. “We have a team motto that we play every team like they’re undefeated, no matter who it is. That’s how we’re going to continue to play.
Reach Matthew Gorry at 835-1513 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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