ROCKINGHAM — When the Richmond Senior girls tennis team battles Lee County today, the Raiders will do so on their resurfaced courts.
Even with the excitement of being the first to compete on the new surface, Richmond coach Paula York had to beat the bushes to field a squad this fall. At their final practice before the season opener, York had seven players and hopes to add another in the near future.
“We are always at a disadvantage because we start so soon before school starts,” York said. “I heard I was going to have 10 to 12 out here but they end up getting jobs or doing other things.
“It really hurts not having a feeder program. There’s not a lot of interest in tennis in the county. If you are a female athlete you are probably going to play volleyball in the fall because that’s what they play in middle school.”
Despite the small numbers, York is excited about the upcoming season even with having to replace Brittany Hudson, last year’s No. 1 singles player, who qualified for the 4A East Regional.
Seniors Caroline Kirkland and Katy Shelley are the lone returners to the team which finished with a 6-8 overall record and a 4-6 mark in the Southeastern Conference last year. Kirkland will begin as the Raiders’ No. 1 singles player, while Shelley will play in the second spot. After sitting out as a junior, Abbi Carpenter returns to the team and is expected to hold down the No. 3 slot. Sophomore Haleigh Denham is penciled in at No. 4 singles.
York said the other two singles spots will be a toss up between Peyton Hunt, Chelsea Covington and Summer Jacobs.
“They are all good kids,” York said. “Academically they all have good grades.”
The Raiders play the Yellow Jackets today at 2:30 p.m. but will not return to action until 4 p.m. Aug. 30 when Hoke County visits to open SEC play.
Raiders even mark at 2-2
ROWLAND — The Richmond Senior volleyball team evened its season record at 2-2 following its 25-19, 13-25, 25-16, 12-25, 15-9 victory over South Robeson Monday night.
The Raiders avenged last week’s 3-1 loss to the Mustangs.
“I’m proud of the girls for getting the win,” Richmond coach Shellie Wimpey said. “But we need to be more consistent.”
Richmond will travel to Union Pines at 6 p.m. today. In the season opener for both teams, the Vikings claimed a straight-set victory.
Soccer game rescheduled
ROCKINGHAM — The Richmond Senior boys soccer team was slated to play Union Pines Monday night but a mix-up in the scheduling forced the teams to move the contest to Saturday at 6:30 p.m. at the Ninth Grade Academy. The junior varsity game will begin at 5 p.m.
The Raiders were set to battle Whiteville on Saturday, however, a scheduling conflict forced the Wolfpack to pull out of the contest.
Richmond will return to action at 6:30 p.m. at South View. The JV squad will hit the field at 5 p.m.
JV football to play at Raider Stadium
ROCKINGHAM — The Richmond Senior junior varsity football game with Lee County will be played at its original time of 7 p.m. at Raider Stadium.
School officials had tentatively moved the first two home games of the season to the practice fields because of construction of the track at the stadium .
— Sports editor Shawn Stinson can be reached at 910-997-3111, ext. 14, or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org