Jake Wilmoth’s hot hand sparks Eagles over Wildcats
Jeff Linville firstname.lastname@example.org
DOBSON — Shooting guard Jake Wilmoth gave the Golden Eagles a needed boost over West Stokes 52-37 Wednesday.
After airballing his first shot attempt of the night, Wilmoth swished four shots in the second quarter as Surry Central built a 12-point halftime lead.
Inside scorers Zach Wilmoth and Dante Hanner didn’t score in the final nine minutes of the half, but Wilmoth, Rocky Collins, Brett Mosley and Cole Stewart took over to turn a 12-7 game into a 31-19 halftime lead.
“We really played well tonight from start to finish,” said Coach Ken Eiswald. “Jake Wilmoth, he came out and just stuck some threes that we needed after that double-overtime loss the night before.”
Eiswald was understandably concerned about his team having a letdown after a two-point heartbreaker to South Stokes on the road Tuesday.
West Stokes made the first basket Wednesday, then Zach Wilmoth and Hanner sparked a 10-4 run to take the lead before their teammates picked up the slack.
There was a stretch early in the second quarter where the Eagles could have built on an 11-point margin, but the defense started allowing penetration off the pass and dribble.
The team had gone to a zone but became too passive, Eiswald said. The guys were letting West Stokes pass the ball wherever they wanted.
“I told them, ‘We’ve got to be moving quicker, get your hands moving and communicate where they are to each other.’”
From the last two minutes of the first half through the second half, Eiswald said the defense was much better regardless of which scheme he called.
Zach Wilmoth finished with a team-high 18 points on 7 of 14 shooting. He added 11 rebounds, one steal and one assist.
Jake Wilmoth had 14 points on 5 of 10 shooting. Cole Stewart scored nine points and was 4 of 4 on two-point tries.
Hanner had six points, seven rebounds and one block.
The bigs did a nice job on the boards, both offensively and defensively, Eiswald said.
Up next is a rematch with North Surry. The first meeting was a two-point nail-biter, and Eiswald doesn’t expect anything less this time.
It’s going to be wild in the gym, he said. The school is recognizing the Copeland youth teams, so it will be packed, and North always brings a good crowd, too, he said.
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