ROCKINGHAM — Even though it would have taken a little luck, Richmond Senior coach Shellie Wimpey still held out hope.
Wimpey was wishing her team would upset Scotland Wednesday night and then have Purnell Swett beat Lumberton to finish in a tie for fourth in the standings with Pirates. If that would have occurred, Richmond would have earned the No. 4 seed in the next week’s Southeastern Conference tournament and played host to Lumberton.
Instead, Wimpey will be making travel plans as the Scots dashed her hopes by sweeping the Raiders 25-18, 25-17, 25-22 on Senior Night.
“We played a lot better against Purnell Swett and Lumberton last week,” Wimpey said. “If we would have played like that this week we would have had a chance against Pinecrest and Scotland.”
Richmond ends the regular season with a 5-13 record and for the second straight year finishes its SEC slate with a 3-7 mark. Scotland improves to 18-2 overall and 9-1 in the conference. The Scots will the No. 1 seed in the conference tournament.
By finishing fifth in the SEC means the Raiders will have to win the conference tournament to earn a bid to the 4A state playoffs. If there is a bit of a silver lining in hitting the road to open the SEC tournament Monday, it is the fact Richmond pulled out a four-game victory last week at Lumberton.
“I don’t know if this will give them a boost or not,” Wimpey said. “They seem to pick and choose which games they want to get up for. If they aren’t up for all of them, we will be out of it pretty quick.”
Despite the victory over its arch rival, Scotland coach Molly Hayes wasn’t pleased with the way her team played against the Raiders.
“This is not the first time it has happened this year,” Hayes said. “I think we come out with the best intentions, but because we don’t have the most experienced team like Scotland has had in the past, we can get rattled out there.”
— Sports editor Shawn Stinson can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 14, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @scgolfer.