High School Sports

Benjamin LeMay, Butler defense charge past Richmond County

Butler’s players didn’t want a repeat of the Bulldogs’ last game against Richmond County.

A dominating first half against the Raiders on Friday made sure that didn’t happen, as Sweet 16 No. 3 Butler rolled to a 32-13 victory over Richmond County at Raider Stadium.

Benjamin LeMay ran for two touchdowns, and Davis Cheek had a near-perfect game at quarterback for the Bulldogs, throwing for 227 yards and a score against the Raiders.

But it was Butler’s defense that set the tone early, turning three turnovers – directly or indirectly – into points as the Bulldogs jumped out to a 32-0 halftime lead.

A bad snap on Richmond County’s first possession led to a safety, a fumble on the Raiders’ next was returned 47 yards for a touchdown by Chrisean Davis-Pinckney, and an interception led to LeMay’s first score, a 1-yard run.

By the end of the first half, Butler’s defense held Richmond County to five first downs and 25 yards total offense.

Quote: “Oh yeah, that was going through our mind the whole week. We thought about that the whole offseason. But we came in here focused and working on our intensity, making sure we finished strong – 32-13, that’s pretty strong,” – LeMay on last year’s 55-54 overtime loss to Richmond County in the third round of the N.C. 4AA playoffs.

Records: Butler 3-1, Richmond County 3-1.

Worth mentioning: LeMay finished with 73 yards rushing on 23 carries, also scoring on a 17-yard run in the second quarter. … Cheek completed his first seven passes in the first half, and finished the first two quarters 14-of-16 for 174 yards passing. … Butler kicker Adrian Salazar was 3 of 4 on extra point kicks, made a 35-yard field goal and all of his kickoffs wound up for touchbacks. … On the downside for Butler, the Bulldogs picked up 110 penalty yards. Six of the Raiders’ first downs also came aided by penalties. … Richmond County quarterback Leon Zeigler scored twice, on runs of 3 and 8 yards, in the second half.

What’s Next: Butler plays its final nonconference game on Sept. 18 at Hough; that same day, Richmond County travels to South View for a nonconference game.