On Thursday, West Stokes avenged an earlier loss to Southwest Guilford during the regular season with an 18-6 dominant performance in the Conference 12 semifinals. Against Mount Tabor on Friday, the Wildcats fell for a second time this season to the Spartans with a 24-4 loss in the conference tournament championship game in King.
“We were able to play well and beat Southwest after a game we should have won during the regular season,” said Wildcat coach Colon Moore. “The loss earlier in the season was really big for us. It cost us a couple of all-conference spots, an automatic berth into the playoffs, and possibly a home playoff game. I was happy to see the guys executed our game plan to perfection. Our team bought into what we were doing and it was a complete team effort.”
The Wildcats jumped on the board early with five first period goals. Senior Reid Pettitt scored within the first minutes of the game on an assist from Parker Pratt. Alex Puckett tallied the next two goals for a 3-0 advantage. Pettitt added a goal with 2:51 left in the quarter on an assist from Marcus Dowdy and Jackson Sapp scored his first of two goals on the evening to close out the first frame.
Southwest found the net three times in the second period, while the Wildcats scored twice. Joel Barr had one goal on an assist from Pettitt and Pratt tallied his only score of the contest.
The home team added seven more goals in the third period and four more in the fourth to close out the game and move on to the championship game.
In the championship bout against Mount Tabor, the state’s eight ranked 3A team, found the net 17 times in the first half and held a 17-2 lead at the half. The Spartans scored five more goals in the third period and two in the fourth for the win.
“We came out flat early in the game against Mount Tabor and could just never recover,” Moore said. “No one played with energy that we had the night before and we could not possess the ball very well. It was a very frustrating night for us.”
Pettitt scored five goals for the Wildcats against Southwest Guilford and Puckett added four. Tristan Carter led the way against Mount Tabor with two goals. Goalie Tanner Cordial had nine saves during each game.
West Stokes is now 11-6 on the year and finished the conference in third place with a 5-2 record. They will host the Community School of Davidson on Wednesday in the first round of the NCHSAA 1A/2A/3A High School Lacrosse State playoffs.
Robert Money can be reached at 336-749-1193.