ROCKINGHAM — The Richmond Senior High School girls’ basketball team showed improvement during Tuesday’s Sandhills Athletic Conference loss.
A fast start by the Lady Raiders didn’t hold up, but head coach Teddy Moseley said the team continued moving in the right direction.
Hosting conference-leading Pinecrest High School, Richmond suffered a 57-40 loss.
“We came out very fast and played very well,” Moseley shared. “I told the girls that the first quarter was the best quarter I’ve seen all year. We played good offense and defense, and despite a few lulls, the overall effort was there tonight.
“We’re getting better, we really are,” he added. “We just go into scoring droughts and we have to be able to keep other teams from scoring when that happens.”
Five Lady Raiders contributed to a first quarter that saw them take an 18-10 lead. Senior C’Nedra Hinson opened the scoring with a three-pointer from the right corner.
Sophomore Quanna Bostic, who finished with a team-high 14 points, followed with a jumper and a triple to give Richmond an 8-3 lead. Junior C’Niya Hison added to the lead with a putback.
Freshman J’Nasia Neal, Richmond’s second leading scorer with nine points, joined the mix with the team’s next six points. She drove the lane three times to find the basket in the paint. With 15 seconds left, senior Nyla Stroman chipped in a bucket.
Pinecrest (8-4, 6-0 SAC) rallied to tie the game at 22 points with a 12-4 run to start the second quarter. Notching Richmond’s points were senior Kyla Sampson (three-pointer) and C’Niya Hinson (free throw).
Bostic tied the game again a few possessions later with a putback. Trailing by five points in the closing 1:20, a Stroman free throw and another Bostic drive made it a 29-27 halftime deficit.
Another close scoring third quarter saw Pinecrest edge Richmond 14-11. Both teams traded baskets during the eight minutes of play, as the Lady Raiders used Bostic’s final five points on a triple and a putback to lead the team.
C’Niya Hinson added a bucket and a foul shot for her final six points and Neal splashed down a three-pointer from the left corner in the closing seconds to pull within five points, 43-38.
Unable to find a rhythm in the fourth quarter, Richmond was outscored 14-2. C’Nedra Hinson rounded out her five points with a floater in the paint with 2:40 left on the clock.
The Lady Patriots were led in scoring by Jasiah Gilchrist’s 21 points and Zanodiya McNair added 17 points.
“This game definitely gives us confidence,” Moseley said. “I’ve told the team since day one that I’ve seen every team in this conference play, and it’s a conference that any team can win. We just have to make the most of the opportunities that we get.
“I thought they played well tonight,” he said of Bostic and Neal. “But they have to continue to play in the second half. They’re young and getting better.”
The Lady Raiders (7-11, 4-4 SAC), who are now in fourth place, have another chance to reenter the win column Friday on the road at last-place Hoke County High School (2-18, 0-8 SAC). Play will begin at 6 p.m.