High School Sports

Richmond Senior turns up defense in 2nd half, shuts down Butler

Richmond Senior’s Jahiem Covington loses the football as Butler linebacker Darius Law (16) and defensive lineman I’zure Glover (43) react in the first half of Friday’s high school footbal game in Matthews. Butler recovered the fumble, but it wasn’t enough. The Bulldogs lost 30-19 to the visiting Raiders.
Richmond Senior’s Jahiem Covington loses the football as Butler linebacker Darius Law (16) and defensive lineman I’zure Glover (43) react in the first half of Friday’s high school footbal game in Matthews. Butler recovered the fumble, but it wasn’t enough. The Bulldogs lost 30-19 to the visiting Raiders.

Richmond Senior shut down Butler’s offense for most of the final 21 minutes Friday night and handed the host Bulldogs a 30-19 setback.

The Raiders’ defense stopped No. 6 Butler’s ground game and sent Bulldogs quarterback Christian Peters running for his life much of the second half. Meanwhile, 10th-ranked Richmond Senior took advantage of good field position and rallied from a 19-16 deficit in the third quarter.

Peters was sacked five times and hurried on most of his other second-half passing attempts. He completed a couple long throws, but the Raiders kept Butler from battling back.

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Butler running back Jamal Worthy (20) fights for extra yards against Richmond cornerback Dj Stephens in the first half of Friday’s high school football game in Matthews. Richmond Senior rallied to win 30-19 in the 4A matchup. NELL REDMOND

The Bulldogs took a 19-16 lead early in the third quarter on a short run by Quasean Holmes, but Richmond Senior took the lead to stay on its next series, going 53 yards in four plays. Jahiem Covington scored on a short run, and the conversion kick made it 23-19.

The Raiders sacked Peters twice on Butler’s next series and forced the Bulldogs to punt from their 4. Richmond Senior got the ball at Butler’s 37 and scored two plays later on a pass from Caleb Hood to Jakolbe Baldwin.

From there, Richmond Senior’s defense took over. Butler drove to the Raiders’ 10 in the final minute but turned the ball over on downs.

Richmond Senior got on the scoreboard first, as Trevor Moss converted on a 31-yard field goal late in the first quarter. The Bulldogs answered two players later, when Holmes broke two tackles and dashed 20 yards into the end zone.

The Raiders regained the lead, 10-7, on a short run by Bobby Terry midway in the second quarter. But Butler responded again, going 80 yards, the final 30 on a Holmes run. That play was preceded by a 47-yard pass from Peters to Michael Passamuntu.

Richmond Senior got the final score of the half with 56 seconds remaining, on a 2-yard run by Covington. That score was set up by a 42-yard Caleb Hood-to-Dalton Stroman pass.

Records: Richmond Senior is 3-1; Butler is 1-2.

Three who mattered

Divine Nicholson (Richmond Senior): A senior defense end, Nicholson had two sacks, two pass break-ups and several hurries of Butler quarterback Christian Peters.

Quasean Holmes (Butler): Holmes scored three touchdowns and carried 11 times for 105 yards in the game.

Caleb Hood (Richmond Senior): Hood, the Raiders’ quarterback, completed 12 of 21 passes for 201 yards.

Worth mentioning

▪ Entering Friday’s game, Butler led the current series with Richmond 4-1. But the series has produced close games – Bulldog victories of 27-21 a year ago and 42-41 in 2016. Last-minute plays determined the outcome both times. Richmond Senior won 55-54 in overtime in 2014.

▪ Butler played without standout Keyon Lesane, whose ejection from the Mallard Creek game (for receiving two personal foul penalties) meant he also had to sit out Friday’s game.

▪ Kickoffs were a bit of an adventure in the first half, with five procedure penalties called on the two teams.

▪ Despite the strong defensive play, the two quarterbacks – Peters and Hood – were not intercepted. Peters finished with 11 completions in 29 attempts, for 192 yards. But he was hurried and forced to throw on the run frequently in the second half.

What’s next?

Richmond Senior is off next week and opens Sandhills 4A play Sept. 21 at Pembroke Purnell Swett; Butler visits Providence next Friday.

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