HOLLY SPRINGS — A back-and-forth battle late in Friday’s playoff opener between No. 25 Richmond and No. 8 Holly Springs ended in a close loss for the Raiders.
Taking a lead late in the fourth quarter thanks to a 29-yard field goal by sophomore Billy West, Richmond ultimately fell in double overtime 36-33 to the Golden Hawks.
The Raiders held leads at the end of the first, second and third quarters, and nearly pulled off the upset. But the Golden Hawks scored a game-tying field goal with just over a second left in regulation to force overtime.
Unable to find the end zone on either of their overtime possessions, which started at the 10-yard line and saw the team given four downs, the Raiders used two more West field goals.
In the first overtime, West was good from 22 yards to tie the game at 30 points and added a 25-yarder in the second overtime to give Richmond a three-point lead.
Holly Springs advanced when it scored a one-yard rushing score on its second drive in extra time.
Also scoring for the Raiders were senior Emoni McBride and junior Jaliel Green, who both recorded one rushing touchdown from inside the 5-yard line. McBride tossed one score to junior Linden Garcia.
The defense recorded a first-half safety thanks to a high snap that was recovered by Holly Springs in the end zone.
The loss in the first round of the NCHSAA 4A East state playoffs ended Richmond’s season, which tallied a 5-6 overall record and finished tied with Scotland High School for second in the Sandhills Athletic Conference.
The Richmond Observer will publish an All-Sandhills Athletic Conference article when that information is released.
Below are photos of Friday’s playoff game, taken by sports editor Kyle Pillar.