North girls overcome shaky start to cruise past Lakeside-DeKalb in first round.
North Forsyth girls basketball coach Brad Kudlas wasn’t impressed by what he was seeing early Friday night.
In the first quarter of the Raiders’ first-round playoff game against Lakeside-DeKalb, he had every reason to be a little concerned. The team that had won three-straight Region 5-7A titles with two Final Four appearances just looked flat, turning the ball over multiple times and just not finding the rim like they’d been accustomed to doing.
In the middle of the first quarter, the Raiders, a team that had lost just twice during the regular season, trailed the No. 4-seeded Vikings by four points. With 2:38 left in the opening quarter, Kudlas called a timeout.
“We just had to tell them to wake up,” Kudlas said. “We just had to get going. That just wasn't Raider basketball — that wasn't what we've been doing. It's tough when you have that whole week off. We came from the excitement of that region championship and then we're having a whole week to get ready and keep them focused. It can be difficult.”
It didn’t take long for the Raiders to heed his words, though. By the end of the frame, North had regained its lead after a 13-1 run, and by the end of the game, North had punched its ticket to the second round with a more expected result, a lopsided 68-46 victory.
The Raiders (26-2) will host North Cobb for the second round on Wednesday.
“It was definitely frustrating, but as a team I think we came together really well and saw that we needed to pick it up once we got down,” North senior Ansley Allen said.
The Raiders took an early lead to start the game, but a 7-0 run from Lakeside put North behind 10-6 before Kudlas rallied his team. Right after the timeout, Allen, Haelim Adle and Caroline Martin all pitched in for a 19-11 lead entering the second.