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Lady Raiders show “a lot of effort” in first preseason scrimmage against Uwharrie Charter

Senior Taliah Wall hits a jump shot in Monday's scrimmage against Uwharrie Charter Academy.
Photo courtesy of Kyle Pillar.

ROCKINGHAM – Even though it was just a scrimmage Monday, first-year Richmond Senior High School girls varsity basketball coach Teddy Moseley was excited to be out on the court for his team’s first action of the season.

The Lady Raiders were the first of the Richmond basketball teams to hit the hardwood this fall, as they hosted Uwharrie Charter Academy in a preseason scrimmage. Playing two 30-minute halves, Richmond took the win by defeating the Lady Eagles 45-17. Moseley, a civics teacher at RSHS, is no stranger to Richmond basketball and said it was good to be back coaching where he played his high school ball.

“It was a good feeling to come back and be where I played,” he said following the scrimmage. “I coached junior varsity boys for three years, but it’s a little different being the girls varsity coach. It was a surreal moment.

“The girls looked energized tonight, which was good to see,” he added. “We’re trying to change the culture, and I want them to feel appreciated. I’m excited about upcoming season — we still have a lot to do, but it’s a work in progress.”

Richmond jumped out to a 17-2 lead in the first half, and only allowed a lone Uwharrie Charter three-pointer in the closing seconds to hold a lead of 24 points, 29-5. While Moseley’s team was outscored 16-12 in the second half, he said was pleased with the way the team looked despite having a short time to prepare and only having the complete team together for a couple of days.

“I was impressed with the team overall — they played very well in the first half and I don’t think (Uwharrie Charter) was expecting that,” Moseley explained. “We used our press really well in the first half, created a lot of turnovers, which led to a lot of easy layups.

“The girls moved the ball well and shared the ball,” he continued. “As a team, we had a lot of good looks at the basket, and the shots are going to start to fall. There’s a difference in bad shots and good shots not falling, and we took a lot of good shots. I told them that it’s okay because this was our first time playing against a real defense.”

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Junior point guard Hailey Miller started the night running the point, and Moseley said she did “a pretty good job.” Mixing up his lineups and rotations, he also used freshman Allyiah Swiney at point guard, noting she “changes the tempo of the game.” The trio of Swiney, her sister Allexis Swiney (junior) and senior Taliah Wall in the back court makes Richmond “so much faster and creates a different game.”

Senior Dannon Sheppard will play a big roll from beyond the arc this season, as her performance Monday satisfied Moseley, as he expressed he wants her to shoot the ball more. Sophomore Jayla McDougald and juniors Bre Wall and Jardai Tillman were several more players Moseley noted as stepping up and playing “good defense” against Uwharrie Charter.

Junior Layne Maultsby and McDougald, Moselsey explained, had several good shots that “just didn’t fall,” but said “that’s a good thing,” as he’s happy to see them putting together solid performances as he expects a lot out of them this year. Taliah Wall, he closed, “played tremendous” and serves as Richmond’s “backbone, captain, and will be a great senior player.”

Getting 60 minutes of playing time in was a good start to the season, and Moseley hopes to continue the upward trend this winter. One thing he hopes to see improve before the season opener on Nov. 27 against Whiteville High School is the team’s conditioning.

“We got a little tired in the second half, so we need to work on our conditioning,” Moseley said. “In order to get in basketball shape, we just need to continue to play and get up and down the floor. Tonight was the first time doing that, so we’ve got to be repetitive — the more we play, and the more familiar we get with each other, the better we’ll be.

“I used several lineups tonight, and I think that they’ll start to gel,” he concluded. “I think we’re going to be alright this season. Our effort is there, and there’s a lot of effort from the girls. If we can do that, everything else will take care of itself.”

The Lady Raiders will travel to Terry Sanford High School on Saturday for a preseason jamboree. Richmond will play three scrimmages at 9 a.m., 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.