Both North Stokes men and women’s basketball teams were beaten by Mount Airy on Friday night in Northwest 1A Conference games. The Bears used a hot first quarter to win 78-57 against the boys’ team, while the Lady Vikings suffered a 63-32 loss to the states number three ranked team according to Maxpreps.
“Mount Airy is a very good team, but we could have done some things to keep the score down,” said Viking coach David Anderson. “We turned the ball over early in the game and that gave them some early momentum. I was not happy with any phase of the way we played on defense. We can do a lot better.”
The Vikings played without all-conference contributor Zach Chesnet, who may be out the rest of the season with a foot injury. North began the game by allowing the Bears to jump out to a 12-0 lead behind the shooting of guard Caleb Arrington. Mount Airy ended the quarter leading 27-6.
North Stokes couldn’t overcome the Bears offense and trailed 44-18 by halftime.
“We just need to do the little things and realize despite us not having Zach, it’s not the end of our season,” Anderson said. “We have a good team that is capable of winning a lot of ballgames. Layton (Helms) had a good game for us tonight and I need others to follow suit and help him.”
North Stokes, who only rosters eight players, used a strong fourth quarter to outscore the home team 25-13, but the margin was too large to overcome.
“We have East Surry next week, so it doesn’t get any easier,” the coach said. “We need to get stops, take charges, get rebounds, and simply get tougher with the ball. I want our kids to play hard and compete no matter the score.”
Isaac Wood and Helms led the Vikings with 11 points each, while Austin Pruitt added 10. Arrington led all scorers with 21 points, with 16 coming in the first quarter alone.
For the Lady Vikings, they ran into a buzz saw with the reigning 1A state champions. The Bears jumped out to a 26-11 lead after the first quarter and then extended their advantage to 44-19 at the half.
The Vikings scored 14 points in the second half, shot 33 percent for the game and were 0-for-9 from the three-point line.
Senior Karley Jessup led North Stokes with 11 points, while Sarah McBride added seven and Leann Sessoms tallied six points and five rebounds. The Bear’s Shaunae Sawyers led all scorers with 16 points, 14 coming in the first half.
North Stokes will finally be back in Danbury on Friday against East Surry after a month of not playing on their home court due to new air conditioning being installed in the gym. North Stokes boys’ team fell to 10-3, 0-2, while the girls team dropped to 4-9, 0-2.
Robert Money can be reached at 336-749-1193.