LAURINBURG — The Richmond girls’ basketball team nearly spoiled Scotland High School’s perfect conference record during Friday’s regular-season finale.
The Lady Raiders’ upset bid came up short despite holding a first-half lead and remaining within two possessions in the second half.
Behind a team-high 19 points from sophomore point guard Jamyia Lindsey off the bench, Richmond fell 60-44 to the Sandhills Athletic Conference champion Lady Scots.
“I thought we started out well, but the second quarter was big for Alicia (McLain) who hit six three-pointers,” head coach Teddy Moseley said. “We have to know to push up and make her put the ball on the floor. That’s what we explained during the timeout.
“We’re a young team and we have to be able to make adjustments. That was the hardest part of this season. As coaches, we can make adjustments but the players have to be able to execute them.”
The Lady Scots opened the game on a 9-0 run but Richmond responded with a 12-5 run through the remaining 4:37. Starting the scoring stretch was junior Makailah Jackson with a free throw, the first of her four points.
Freshman J’Nasia Neal hit a three-pointer, sophomore Quanna Bostic added two free throws and senior C’Nedra Hinson scored on a putback to close the gap.
A Bostic jumper off the glass, coupled with a layup, gave her six points in the first. She finished with eight points.
Trailing 14-12 to start the second, Lindsey gave the Lady Raiders a one-point lead when she got on the board with a triple from the top of the arc.
McLain, who finished with a game-high 25 points, answered by netting 18 of Scotland’s 20 points in the second. She hit a trio of triples to make it a 23-15 lead, which was stopped by another Jackson free throw.
A Lindsey jumper and another three-pointer from her at the buzzer cut into Richmond’s deficit, which trailed 34-21 at the break.
The closest the Lady Raiders would get in the second half was six points, two different times. A Hinson free throw and five more points from Lindsey pulled Richmond within two possessions, 34-28, with 6:50 on the clock.
Both teams traded buckets for the remainder of the third, with Lindsey and senior Kyla Sampson each scoring a three-pointer. Netting two points each were Bostic and Jackson, and Hinson scored another free throw.
Entering the fourth down 50-38, Richmond saw its deficit grow to as many as 17 points. Lindsey led the team’s scoring with three more points on a baseline jumper and a free throw.
Hinson capped her five-point game with a free throw and senior Nyla Stroman collected her own rebound and put it in the hoop for her two points in the game.
In addition to McLain’s 25 points, Morgan Thompson added 14 points and Nyasia McQueen scored 9 points for the Lady Scots (17-7, 12-0 SAC).
Finishing the regular season with a 9-14 record and a 6-6 mark against conference opponents, the Lady Raiders finished in a tie with Union Pines High School (9-12, 6-6 SAC) for third place.
Richmond will host a first-round game in next week’s Sandhills Athletic Conference tournament. A coin toss will be done on Saturday to determine the Lady Raiders’ seeding and opponent.
“We’re definitely hosting,” Moseley closed. “I still think we have a chance to win the conference tournament. (Lindsey) played well off the bench and that should give us a spark.”
Richmond will be home on Tuesday in the first round, starting at 6 p.m.