Sunday, 05 December 2021 12:12

JV Raiders split road games at Pine Forest, Jack Britt

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Sophomore David McNair, seen shooting a three-pointer at Jack Britt, led the JV Raiders in scoring during both games. Sophomore David McNair, seen shooting a three-pointer at Jack Britt, led the JV Raiders in scoring during both games. Kyle Pillar — Sports Editor.

FAYETTEVILLE — Playing a pair of road games on Friday and Saturday, the Richmond junior varsity boys’ basketball team split with Pine Forest and Jack Britt high schools.

The JV Raiders lost a close game 53-52 to Pine Forest, before rebounding with a 60-52 win over Jack Britt a day later.

Head coach Kenta Hutchinson said his team was up by as many as 8 points in the fourth quarter against Pine Forest, but foul trouble and the inability to “close it out” in the final minutes resulted in the loss.

Sophomore David McNair was the leading scorer for the JV Raiders in both games, netting 15 points in the loss, before adding 20 points against the Buccaneers.

Also scoring for Richmond at Pine Forest were sophomore Jada Zimmerman (14 points), sophomore Toby McInnis and freshman Ahaiver McDonald (both with 6 points), freshman Keyonta Davis (5 points) and freshmen Raymond Knotts and Keidreion Crump each had 3 points.

Sophomore Jada Zimmerman goes up for a rebound against Jack Britt. (Kyle Pillar/The Richmond Observer)

The JV Raiders were able to control the game’s tempo from the start against Jack Britt, seeing McNair net 15 of his 20 points in the first quarter.

“We just moved on and focused on the next game,” Hutchinson said of Saturday’s win. “I told the guys that two back-to-back games on the road were going to be tough against two quality teams.

“The goal is to continue to adjust to the speed of the game and we are a freshman heavy team that is getting better,” he added.

Opening the first quarter on a 13-7 run to take an early lead against Jack Britt, McNair accounted for 12 of those points. He hit a layup and a foul shot on the first possession, before completing another old-fashioned three-point play on the next drive down the court.

A free throw, a field goal and two triples, including one with 1:14 to go in the frame, capped McNair’s early scoring burst.

Knotts, who finished with 10 points, hit a free throw and a field goal in the first. McInnis knocked down a free throw for the first of his 3 points.

“David is a two-year guy and he knows we have to rely on him offensively and defensively,” Hutchinson said. “He can shoot the ball and he took advantage of a lot of open looks to help us off to a fast start.

“We really worked on being patient, and we didn’t even run any sets. The goal was to find the open shots and the guys did well with that.” 

Freshman Ahaiver McDonald dribbles the ball up the court in Richmond’s win. (Kyle Pillar/The Richmond Observer)

Starting the second quarter with a pair of free throws, which proved to be the difference maker in the game, McDonald notched the first of his 11 points. He also added two more foul shots before halftime.

Netting two points apiece in the second were Knotts, McInnis, Davis and Zimmerman. At the break, Richmond led 31-26.

The JV Raiders added 16 points in the third quarter and opened the game to their largest lead, 13 points. 

Davis, who finished with 9 points, and Knotts each scored five points in the third to lead the team, McNair added two more field goals and McDonald scored a basket.

A drive by Davis in the first minute of the fourth kept the lead at 13 points, and Zimmerman added a bucket and a foul shot for the first three of his five fourth-quarter points. McDonald also scored five points late, all coming on free throws.

Freshman Keyonta Davis shoots a free throw late in the game, which helped the Raiders hold on for the win. (Kyle Pillar/The Richmond Observer)

“We have two really decent big men, Toby and Jada, who battle in the paint,” Hutchinson said. “We want to get them looks because they do a lot of the dirty work down low.

“Over the last two years, Toby has worked extremely hard and he can be a 10-and-10 guy,” he closed. “This was a good win for us heading into conference play.”

Sophomore Toby McInnis (35) defends a Jack Britt player in the second half of Saturday’s win. (Kyle Pillar/The Richmond Observer)

Richmond (2-2) will have a home game Tuesday at 4:30 p.m. against Southern Lee High School to kick off Sandhills Athletic Conference action.

Kyle Pillar

Nine-time N.C. Press Association award-winning sports editor. Indiana University of Pennsylvania communications media and journalism alumni. English teacher, Ninth Grade Academy.

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