Thursday, 06 December 2018 00:00

Raiders let Cavs pull away in second half, fall to Southern Lee 62-46

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Head coach Donald Pettigrew says his team is "getting the kinks out early" despite 0-2 start. Head coach Donald Pettigrew says his team is "getting the kinks out early" despite 0-2 start. Kyle Pillar — The Richmond Observer.

SANFORD – There were spurts of “good play” by the Richmond Senior High School boys varsity basketball team Wednesday, but the Raiders couldn’t muster enough offense to get by non-conference opponent Southern Lee High School.

Richmond let the Cavaliers pull away in the second half, as head coach Donald Pettigrew’s team fell by a final score of 62-46. The Raiders are now 0-2 on the season, after also dropping their season-opener Monday at Pine Forest High School. 

“We started off really good tonight, and then things got sloppy,” Pettigrew said following the game. “I think we got a little tired mentally, and we shut down. We had too many turnover and missed a lot of easy buckets. But we didn’t take bad shots, and our defense looked really good, especially in the first quarter.

“The guys just need to learn how to execute,” he added. “If we can learn how to finish the defensive set by getting rebounds, we can turn that into scoring. We want to hold other teams to no threes and long twos, and (after tonight), we need to do a better job of contesting shots.”

Both teams would get off to a slow start in the first quarter, with the majority of the points scored came in the final three and a half minutes. Senior forward Xavier Pettigrew banked a shot off the glass in the opening possession for Richmond, but that lead tuned into a 12-9 deficit at the end of the first eight minutes.

Sophomore Nygie Stroman led Richmond with 12 points on the night, and he notched five of them in the opening frame. He kissed one off the glass to tie things up a four early on, before going on a 3-0 run by himself late, hitting a turnaround jumper down low and a free throw.

His free throw with just over a minute to go in the quarter would be the last for the Raiders until the 6:06 mark of the second quarter, as the Cavs (5-1) went on a 12-0 scoring run. Senior Khalil Ridges was a big part of that, as he scored nine of his game-high 24 points in the final eight minutes of the first half.

At the break, the Raiders trailed 32-17, but the closest they would come to passing the Cavs in the second half was 10 points, which came on a PJ McLaughlin three-pointer early in the fourth quarter. Ridges added 10 points in the final two quarters, and got help from Jamori McDougald, who finished the game with 10 points.

No other Raiders managed to score more than six points, as it was junior Quamir Sivels who was second on the team with that tally. McLaughlin and fellow sophomore guard Caleb Hood each finished with five points.

“We’re going to change some things up tomorrow in practice,” Pettigrew said. “The good thing about basketball is it’s not the way we start, it’s the way we finish. Tonight was the first time we had all of our players, and Xavier isn’t in good shape right now.

“We’ll be fine,” he concluded. “PJ controlled the game really well tonight, and the young guys will be on a roller coaster ride until they get that varsity experience. We’re going to stick with the process and work on getting the kinks out early.”

The Raiders, like their Lady Raider counterparts, will hit the road for third time this week, and play their third road game over an hour from home, when they travel to Ronald Reagan High School Friday. Tipoff against the Reagan Raiders (1-1) is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. following the girls’ game.

Note: In the Raiders’ junior varsity game, Richmond defeated Southern Lee 38-19. Head coach Tony Terry’s team saw its first action of the season led by sophomore Dalton Stroman, who finished the night with a team-high 10 points.

Also helping Richmond improve to 1-0 on the season were sophomores CJ Tillman (six points), Isaiah Jones (five points) and Dylan Lewis (four points).

Last modified on Thursday, 06 December 2018 01:00
Kyle Pillar

Sports Editor. IUP alumni. English teacher, Ninth Grade Academy. Sports guru. Eagle Scout. Motorcycle enthusiast. Pretend golfer. Avid reader. Pennsylvania native. 

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