DOBSON — Zach Wilmoth carried Surry Central during a cold first quarter, then the Golden Eagles teamed up for a 64-53 win over Elkin Wednesday.
Wilmoth was the only player to score for the Eagles in the first quarter as the Buckin’ Elks took a 13-10 lead going into the second period.
Then with Elkin up 17-12, the defense tightened up on Elkin, while guard Colby Chilton provided an offensive burst with four slashing layups over less than four minutes. Three of those shots came in a row to give the Eagles a 24-21 lead with two minutes left to halftime.
The Eagles kept that three-point edge at 27-24 at the break.
Colby has always been athletic with good quickness and hops, said assistant coach Jeff Edmonds. Over the past two weeks, he has been finishing those drives with a much higher success rate than he ever has at Surry Central, the assistant noted.
Chilton also provided much of the defensive coverage on Elkin standout Sam Lane, who finished with a hard-fought 12 points, but just three in the pivotal second half.
Kenyon Martin also took turns at Lane, battling with him in the paint, Edmonds said.
In the third quarter, the defensive intensity only increased, then the offense began to get some easier looks off executing well with screens and back-door cuts, said Edmonds. Many of the looks were in close and caused Elkin to commit several fouls.
Lane fouled out, and several others had three or more fouls as the Eagles went to the line 35 times from the second quarter on.
A big push in the third quarter stretched that three-point lead to double figures and eventually 15 points.
The Wilkes Central game Friday was the best defense the team had played so far in the season, noted Coach Ken Eiswald. This game made it two great efforts in a row. The team hasn’t been consistent on the defensive end, but now they are back to playing Surry Central basketball.
When the defense is playing tough, it is easier to feel patient on offense because players aren’t pressured to get into a scoring race, he said.
This should give the team a positive frame of mind as it gets back to playing conference games again, Eiswald said.
Wilmoth finished 8-14 from two-point range, 1-3 from deep, and 12-18 from the line for 31 points.
He added 11 rebounds, two assists, two steals and a block.
Chilton provided 14 points, seven rebounds and three steals.
Luke Haymore chipped in nine points and five rebounds. Off the bench, Samuel Harris had four points and Rocky Collins three.