SANFORD — Surviving a big conference road test on Friday, the Richmond Raider football team obtained its first winning record of the season.
Defeating Lee County High School 35-33, the Raiders stayed in second place in the Sandhills Athletic Conference standings.
Using a 28-point first half, the Raiders got things going on special teams when senior Brandon Askins blocked a 24-yard field goal attempt on the game’s opening drive.
Answering with an 80-yard march, the Raiders took a 7-0 lead thanks to a 4-yard rushing score from senior Taye Spencer.
The first quarter saw the Raiders jump out to a 21-14 lead, adding to their point total with an 83-yard passing score from senior Emoni McBride to Spencer. Junior Jaliel Green broke loose for a 66-yard rushing touchdown.
McBride connected with senior Jamarion Bryant for a 26-yard passing score in the second quarter, which gave Richmond a 28-21 lead at the break.
Helping set up the Raiders’ final score was a strip fumble recovery by senior Frazion Steele early in the third.
With the short field, McBride tied his career-high of three passing touchdowns with a 12-yard toss to junior Jada Zimmerman.
In the final quarter, Lee County (6-2, 2-2) pulled within one possession and was on the brink of tying the game after a successful onside kick attempt. But sophomore Joe Parsons disrupted the two-point try and senior Messiah Shaw intercepted the ball.
Using a penalty and two rushing first downs, the Raiders ran out the final 4:20 to secure the win, their third straight.
Richmond (5-4, 4-1 SAC) has a bye this week and will close its season at home against rival Scotland on Oct. 28. It will also be senior night, with kickoff set for 7:30 p.m.
Below are photos of Friday’s conference win for Richmond over Lee County, taken by sports editor Kyle Pillar.