LAURINBURG — Scotland coach Danny Gallagher really liked what he saw from his team Wednesday.
He should as the Scots claimed a 4-2 win over their rivals from Rockingham.
“It was Richmond so the girls were really up for it, so now we just need to get it so that every game is that kind of mentality,” Gallagher said. “They all have that fight but it’s getting that consistency. That made a huge difference for us tonight, where for the full 80 minutes we had the best out of every girl at every position.”
The game never had a dull moment as both sides were constantly on the attack. Nearly every ball was contested and dozens of fouls were called by the referees. Both sides saw players forced to leave the field because of an injury.
Richmond coach Benny Howard said it was one of the most physical games of the season.
“Anytime it’s Richmond and Scotland it’s going to be a battle, and that’s what it was tonight,” Howard said. “I hate that some of his girls and my girls got hurt, but that’s soccer and that’s why you carry a full squad.”
Scotland opened the scoring just six minutes into the game when Anna Lisa Ciarrocca curled the ball into the top corner of the net.
Richmond came back to tie it eight minutes later when Cassie McFayden launched a high, arching shot from about 35 years out sailed above the hands of Scotland goalkeeper Anna Griswold.
The Scots were able to keep the ball for long stretches of time after giving up the goal but was unable to find the back of the net again until Cearra Blackwell headed the ball in off a free kick to make it 2-1 at halftime.
Gallagher said the possession dominance reminded him of the game against Hoke County last week, except this time Scotland was able to score.
The four goals were the second-most for Scotland this season, behind a five-goal effort in a shutout win over Purnell Swett on March 20.
“Hopefully that will give us some confidence as we go forward through the rest of the SEC schedule,” Gallagher said.
The Scots opened the second half like they started the game, getting another goal within the first few minutes. Jessi Kee knocked the ball in from a few feet out after a scramble in front of the net. Her goal ended up being the deciding factor as Holli Hayes added Richmond’s second goal of the game with 21 minutes to play.
“We were without two of our starters,” Howard said. “We came out flat in the second half and they scored two goals in the first eight minutes.”
Richmond falls to 2-7-1 overall and 1-4 in conference. Scotland improves to 3-6-1 on the year and 2-2-1 in the SEC.
The Raiders will return to action 7 p.m. Friday at home against Whiteville.
— Corbin Ensminger can be reached at 276-2311, ext. 14 or on Twitter @CorbinSC.