ROCKINGHAM — After three relatively quiet quarters, Friday’s game between the Richmond and Scotland girls basketball teams turned into what most fans expect out of the rivalry matchup.
Both teams picked up the intensity, the crowd followed suit, and due to a basket in the final seconds, five extra minutes were added to the game clock.
The tightly-contested overtime period was ruled by many turnovers, foul calls and missed free throws. When it was all said and done, though, it was Scotland who escaped with a 51-48 victory and ended the regular season with bragging rights in the rivalry.
Richmond (5-14, 3-11 SAC) had hoped grab a win on the night where it was celebrating its senior class: Jordyn Horne, Lexyonna Ingram and Taliah Wall. There were multiple opportunities for the home team to do so, but a couple of mishaps down the stretch kept that from happening.
After battling back in the fourth quarter, the Lady Raiders opened overtime by leaving Scotland’s Tramaine Patterson under the basket for a wide-open layup and then struggled to knock down their shots from the foul line. Arguably their most costly mistake, however, was letting too much time run off the clock after they missed a late free throw.
Scotland (3-16, 2-11 SAC) scooped up the ball, which had made its way to the three-point line, and ran almost all the time off the clock before guard Niaria Leach was fouled with 0.3 seconds left. Leach’s two makes from the charity stripe gave her 20 points on the night and sealed the win for the Lady Scots.
Despite Richmond’s loss, the three seniors received a thunderous applause from the home crowd during the Senior Night ceremony that followed the game. Horne made her presence felt on the defensive end of the court while Ingram and Wall combined for 19 points in the last home game of their careers.
Sophomore guard Keionna Love led the team in scoring for the second consecutive game, exploding for 11 of her 13 points in the second half. Fellow sophomores Layne Maultsby and Allexis Swiney chipped in seven and five, respectively.
BOYS LEAD AT HALF, FALL APART IN 3Q
ROCKINGHAM — The first half of the boys game led many inside Raider Gymnasium to believe they were going to witness another thrilling finish between the two rival schools.
There were only three points separating Richmond and Scotland at the end of the first quarter, and then that slim margin was cut down to just two points when they went into the locker room for halftime.
In the second half, however, Scotland’s Justin McRae and Janoah McRae took over and led the away team to a 58-42 victory over the Raiders on their Senior Night.
Things were chippy from the start, causing the officials to warn both head coaches that technical fouls would be given out if the jawing back and forth between players didn’t come to an end. The talking calmed down, but the intensity level stayed the same.
Richmond’s Da’Shaun Wallace and Scotland’s Bruce Wall scored the first four points for their respective teams before the Raiders went on a late run to help themselves to a 10-7 lead after one quarter of play. A more all-around scoring effort in the second quarter gave the home team a 24-22 advantage heading into the half.
The second half was a different story, however, as Justin McRae came out aggressive and netted nine points in the third quarter. He was also responsible for the pass that went through the Raiders’ trap and led to an Isaiah Bostick dunk.
Janoah McRae, after his team closed the third quarter with a seven-point lead, opened the final stanza on fire — knocking down a trio of three-pointers within minutes of one another and helping Scotland separate itself for good.
Richmond (7-17, 2-12 SAC) celebrated seniors Wallace, Darrius Butler, Kaleb Douglas, Malik Flowers and Carl McNeal prior to the game. Wallace finished with a team-high 15 points while Butler, Douglas and McNeal combined for 12 points. Flowers missed the game due to sickness.
The Sandhills Athletic Conference Tournament begins next week. The top four seeds will host the bottom four seeds in the first round (at 7 p.m.) — with the highest seeded teams hosting the semifinals and finals.
All girls teams will play Monday, Wednesday and Friday and the boys will play Tuesday, Thursday and Friday.
Reach sports editor Leon Hargrove Jr. by phone at 910-817-2673 or by email at [email protected] For stories, scores and updates, follow the Daily Journal’s sports section on Twitter @RCDailySports.
Richmond’s Allexis Swiney (14) being defended by Scotland’s Mylasia Pratt (10).