FAYETTEVILLE — Not a lot of things went right for the Raiders when they traveled to Jack Britt on Friday.
Aside from a couple of Dante Miller touchdowns and a late throw to Da’Shaun Wallace in the back of the end zone, they struggled to get anything going on the road. Their offense failed to consistently move the chains and their defense had no answer for neither junior quarterback Brennan
Raiders struggle in loss at Jack Britt
nor junior tailback Glenn Young.
Head coach Bryan Till watched Shortridge throw for 196 yards and three touchdowns, Young rush for 109 yards and three scores and his team break down in a 41-20 loss in its third conference game of the season.
“This is still a pretty good football team,” he said. “We’ve just got to figure things out, how to be consistent, because right now we’re on a rollercoster.”
Richmond (4-3, 2-1 SAC) received the opening kickoff and seemed to be on its way to a big night when freshman quarterback Caleb Hood mishandled the snap, picked it up and then found junior tailback Jordyn Wall on a screen pass that went 56 yards for what should’ve been the game’s first score.
But a holding penalty as Wall made his way up the field brought the ball back, and the Raiders were forced to punt after they failed to get to the first-down marker.
Jack Britt (4-3, 2-1 SAC) would capitalize on its opening possesion with Young’s first touchdown run, a 3-yard push, a few plays after a successful conversion on fourth down. Nearly three minutes later, after another Raider punt, Shortridge hooked up with senior wideout Barry Eliott for a 78-yard touchdown strike and the Bucaneers went ahead 12-0.
His second and third touchdown passes — to senior wide receiver Malik Graddy and Elliott, respectively — were interrupted by the Raiders’ first score, a 4-yard run from Miller, late in the second half.
And they trailed 26-6 at halftime.
“We gave up some huge pass plays to give them some easy touchdowns (in the first half). I feel like we should’ve have a some picks on a couple of those things,” he said. “We’ve got to make plays when we’re in position to make plays.”
Neither team put points on the board in the third quarter, but they both scored two touchdowns in the final stanza.
The Bucs got a couple touchdowns runs from Young, a 12-yard scamper to open the fourth quarter and then a 18-yard burst to close the game’s scoring. Miller returned a kickoff 89 yards for his second score of the night with 11:28 left in the game, and then Hood jumped to pass and found senior wideout Da’Shaun Wallace in the back of the end zone with a little more than four minutes to go.
“The biggest thing was allowing them to drive the field on us. Mentally, that sucked some energy out of us early…and they took a lot of time off the clock,” Till said. “We’ve got to learn to deal with that adversity.”
Friday’s loss was only the second time in school history that Richmond has lost to Jack Britt, the last time being the 56-52 defeat suffered in the third round of the 2012 playoffs.
“We’re going to keep fighting and maybe change some things around. We’ve got to do better than what we did tonight,” Till added.
Hood led the Raiders’ offensive efforts, going 19-33 for 250 passing yards and a touchdown. He connected with Wallace six times for 91 yards and junior Jahyee Stanback five times for 94 yards. Miller tallied a team-high 48 rushing yards on 10 carries.
Reach sports editor Leon Hargrove Jr. at 910-817-2673 and follow the sports section on Twitter @RCDailySports.