At stake was a 3-0 SEC start for the Raiders.
Things didn’t appear to be going in the Raiders favor early, but they dug in and rallied to edge the Lumberton Pirates, 3-2, pushing their 2010 record to 8-3-1 (3-0).
Lumberton tallied the first goal in the contest on a shot that took an awkward bounce and just slipped by Raiders keeper Chris McDonald with 37:48 left in the first half.
The Pirates appeared to be out playing the Raiders in the first half, beating them to the ball and making all the right moves to get by the Raiders defenders.
Brian Smith and Davis Hilton both got quality shots at the goal, but they sailed high and wide of the goal.
Brandon Standridge and Davis Hilton both stepped up for the Raiders at the 28:04 mark when Standridge set up Hilton, and Hilton fired a shot from the left corner of the keeper’s box into the net.
The Pirates would not go away as they scored the go ahead goal with 25:02 left in the first half, and took a one-goal lead into intermission.
Head Coach Bennie Howard gave the Raiders players a spirited speech during the intermission as the Raiders came out firing on all cylinders in the second half.
Brandon Benoist was pushed down by a Pirates defender in the Pirates keeper’s box and set the Raiders up with a golden penalty kick.
Brandon Standridge was solid on a penalty kick once again as he unleashed the ball off his right foot and past the keeper to the left into the goal at the 28:06 mark in the second half.
With the game tied 2-2 the momentum was shifting in the Raiders stadium as you could feel the air being drawn out of Alton Brooks Stadium.
Benoist provided the game winning goal for the Raiders at the 20:56 mark for the Raiders as they played a much more physical style in the second half and kept the Pirates off the scoreboard.
Lumberton appeared to tie the game late in the second half, but the goal was not allowed as the Pirates player was ruled to be off-sides and the Raiders dug in and finished the game out.
“We played lethargically in the first half, we were getting beat to the ball and weren’t making very many plays,” Howard said.
“We were very lucky tonight to get out of Lumberton with a win,” Howard added.
Richmond hosts Pinecrest on Monday night at 7 pm. at Raider Stadium.
Contact sports reporter Travis Anderson at 997-3111 ext. 44 or via e-mail at email@example.com