Raiders Finish Third But Boast Wins Over Top Two
Richland Juniors Logan Helton (left) and Daniel Nicholson receive recognition for scoring more than 1,000 points each during their basketball careers. MARK MIZE / PULASKI CITIZEN
by Mark Mize
The Richland High School boys’ basketball team swept the final week of the district season including a road win over Mt. Pleasant after falling at the buzzer to the Tigers earlier this season.
The Raiders throttled last place Hampshire 70-26 in the first game before closing out the week with an important road win for the team’s confidence moving into the tournament. While Richland will enter the postseason with the third seed at 5-3, the team has defeated each of the top two seeds in Mt. Pleasant and Santa Fe which both finished at 6-2.
Richland was scheduled to host Summertown today (Tuesday) before traveling to Cascade Thursday to close out the regular season in a pair of non-district contests.
Richland completed the sweep over the Hawks Feb. 3, defeating the team by a combined score of 149-57 in two meetings this season.
Four players finished in double figures for RHS as the team led 41-18 at halftime at Dwight Clark Gymnasium and played its entire roster by the end of the night.
Daniel Nicholson and Trey Luna scored 13 points each to led RHS. Logan Helton and Tyrell Randolph both scored 10. Bryce Anderson added six points. Jackson Alsup scored five including a 3-pointer. Montel Bobbitt chipped in four points. Brennen Angus, Presley Wise, Stevie Ballinger and Josh Workman each scored two. Nathan Garner added a free throw.
For Hampshire, Cameryn Bass scored 12 points.
Juniors, Nicholson and Helton, were recognized after the game for each having surpassed the 1,000-point scoring mark this season. The dynamic duo joins girls player Jesse Jennings who now has more than 1,500 points as a junior.
Mt. Pleasant 45
After suffering a heartbreak loss to the Tigers at Dwight Clark Gymnasium, Richland returned the favor on the road Friday with a 51-45 win that kept Mt. Pleasant from winning the district outright.
The game was again marked by defense with the evenly matched teams both finishing well under their season scoring averages.
Richland led 24-20 at the half and just 34-29 after three quarters. Trey Luna scored eight in the final quarter including a pair of 3-point baskets, and Richland hit three free throws in the final period to close out the win.
Daniel Nicholson scored a game-high 18 points to lead four RHS players in double figures. Logan Helton added 12. Montel Bobbitt scored 11, and Luna finished with 10.
The Raiders kept from fouling Mt. Pleasant in crucial situations, holding the opponent to just five free throw attempts and winning the battle 8-of-14 to 3-of-5 in that department.
Keshawn Hudson scored a team-high 15 points for the Tigers. Jacob Smith had 13, and Kentra Frierson scored 10.