KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — For the second straight day, a junior player on the Richmond Senior High School boys basketball team set a new career-high.
A whirlwind trip to Tennessee ended in a victory on the court for the Raiders, as junior shooting guard Jamarion Wall dropped a personal best 26 points.
Playing in their second and final game of the 5Star Preps Hoop Jam, the Raiders rebounded from a close loss the day before with an 80-53 win over Lebanon High School.
Like they have several times this season, the Raiders relied on three-point shooting to distance themselves to another victory.
From beyond the arc, Richmond splashed down 14 triples, including a team-high six from junior wing Jullien Cole. He finished the game 7-of-12 shooting with 20 points.
Wall was also solid from three-ball territory, knocking down four triples and netting 11-of-16 from the field.
“We had a good workout and Jamarion shot the ball really well today,” head coach Donald Pettigrew said. “He came off the bench and gave us some really good minutes. Jullien (Cole) hit six threes and continued to be really consistent.
“The first half was a little sluggish, but the guys played with great energy and picked it up in the second half,” he continued. “We played how we know we can play. I told the guys we control whether or not we win or lose, and the guys were locked in.”
Richmond jumped out to a 20-13 lead after the first quarter. Cole ignited the start with three triples and a bucket for his first 11 points, and junior Paul McNeil Jr. hit a three-pointer and a basket for the first five of his nine points.
Wall came into the game and drilled a three-pointer and junior point guard Javian Drake netted a free throw. He followed up his career-high performance with 10 points against the Blue Devils (6-4).
Lebanon outscored Richmond 13-11 in the second quarter, but the Raiders maintained a 31-26 lead at the break. Senior point guard Dakota Chavis netted four of his seven points in the win, Cole added a three-pointer and both Wall and Drake scored a bucket.
A 24-point third quarter helped set the victory in motion, as Wall and Cole both connected for six more points each. Wall scored on three field goals and Cole stayed hot with two more shots from downtown.
Chavis and Drake added to the three-point clinic with one triple apiece, freshman guard Jayden Hamilton scored all three of his points on a bucket and a free throw, senior forward Zion Baldwin netted his two points and McNeil Jr. chipped in a free throw.
Leading 55-38 at the start of the fourth quarter, the final stanza belonged to Wall. Finding a groove, he added his final 15 points on three three-pointers and three field goals.
Capping Richmond’s scoring were Drake (four points), McNeil (three-pointer) and junior forward Toby McInnis (three points).
“Dakota was locked in and gave us a lot of good minutes,” Pettigrew said. “He did a lot of little things like rebounding, giving us extra shots and playing defense.
“Jamarion played well yesterday and I wanted to give him some more minutes today. When he and Dakota and the other guys play the way they did today, it brings so much more to our team.”
Leading the Blue Devils in scoring was Jarred Hall, who finished the game with 25 points. He scored 20 points in the opening two periods and added five points after the break.
Ahead of the game, the Raiders also visited The University of Tennessee and participated in a shoot around and team workout at the Volunteers’ practice facility.
“It was so cool, and the guys and the coaches were so excited,” Pettigrew said. “Even Coach (Frank) Harrington, Coach (Keith) Parsons and his daughter were taking shots. It was a memorable experience for everyone.”
Richmond (8-2, 1-0 SAC) will enjoy an extended break over the holidays and continue practicing for its next game on Jan. 3.
The Raiders will continue Sandhills Athletic Conference play at home against Hoke County High School (2-6, 1-1 SAC). Opening tip is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.
Note: Stats were provided by Richmond assistant coach Keith Parsons and 5Star Preps.