By Charlie Moon, Lowcountryradio.com.
Folks, if you want to be a part of a monster night in Richmond Hill athletics - if you want to be a part of “Building the Hill,” you need to pay attention Friday night and this weekend. There will be big action on the hardwood, and the mat! The Wildcat Wresting team is competing in the GHSA State Championships in Atlanta, while the basketball teams will be on the road at Statesboro in crucial match-ups.
Check the GHSA website for live results of the Wrestling State Championships. Tune into Lowcountryradio.com Friday night for the live hoops men/women double-header action beginning at 5:45.
Look folks, I gotta be honest. I grew up watching “Rasslin” much more than I ever watched any wrestling. So, I don’t know much about how it all works. But, I’m learning, and the first thing is – duals.
Saturday, the Cats will battle in the GHSA Duals State Championships at Lassiter High, in the Atlanta Metro area. These are seeded differently than other sports. The final eight squads are seeded and wrestle a double-elimination style tournament. The 4th-seeded Cats take on Buford in the Opening Round.
Kamdyn Munro was the leading returner, having won the individual 152 pound state title last year, but had a knee replacement stemming from a December injury. Brandon Langley, Tate Evans, Anthony Taylor, Anthony Allen and Dylan Tucker have led the way this season. All but Allen are returning 2020 State Qualifiers.
Basketball Preview Friday, January 29 #2 Richmond Hill Men 15-0 (7-0) at #8 Statesboro 13-2 (6-1)
The AAAAAA #2 ranked Cats, undefeated haven’t played since Jan. 19. Friday’s game at Benedictine and Tuesday’s game against Glynn Academy were either PPD or cancelled. So, we’ll take a little time for a preview of this crucial bash. This game will essentially decide the regular season conference title and a 1-seed headed into Conference Tourney play.
I live in Statesboro and I can tell you, the talk around town has been of revenge. The Cats put down the Blue Devils 67-57 at home Jan. 5. For almost three quarters, it looked like the Cats were going to float to easy win with a 50-35 at the 4:20 3rd quarter mark. Statesboro changed all that with a 14-0 lead.
The Blue Devils knocked down a game-opening three, but were stifled then. Statesboro only had one loss. Low Country Radio color analyst Brock Vaigneur said, “Charlie, these guys may only have one loss, but they don’t impress me tonight. They’re just jacking up 3s and hitting nothing.”
To which I replied, “You’re right. It’s not happening right now, but this squad is built on that. Lee Hill has run the same offense for decades and it works for them – just not right now.”
Hill is the winningest coach in GHSA basketball history. Sadly, he passed away in July from COVID.
His two state titles and several semi-final appearances were marked by his vaunted swing offense. Their offense is predicated on pressure defense and swinging it around the perimeter while running guys along baseline screens. Former Blue Devil Keith Legree has come back home to take Hill’s slot, and hasn’t changed a thing. Legree played on Hill’s 1991 State Title team and played under coaches Denny Crumb and Bob Huggins at Louisville and Cincinnati. He played in the NBA and has coaching stops at Detroit University and Cincinnatifor something. Heck, the Blue Devils had almost as many fans there as did Richmond Hill. They made the East Gym their home.
Nijuan Youmans and Markgraf knocked down two 3s and settled things down. In the 4th quarter, they handled the press well, and got back to getting out on shooters.
Jaden Marshall led the way with 17. Braden Baker and Liam Markgraf followed with 12 and 11 respectively. Leighton Finley grabbed 10 boards.
The Cats biggest threat will not only be the dangerous, deep roster of the Blue Devils, but it will be Lee Hill Arena. It was just dedicated in Saturday’s 84-40 domination over Southeast Bulloch team. The Blue Devils have a long, strong tradition and their fans show it. They’re knowledgeable and understand when they’re needed.
It will be a great one on Lowcountryradio.com!
#13 13-3 (6-2) Ladies at #8 13-0 (7-0) Statesboro
The men won’t be the only ones involved a crucial, heated battle. The ladies will take a 43-22 win over Glynn Academy into Lee Hill Arena. The Lady Blue Devils are undefeated and are sensing a lack of respect, being undefeated and not ranked higher than #8.
The Lady Cats are not as deep but they rely on their stifling half-court defense and grit. Senior Azaria Johnson has been the lone consistent offensive producer. But Kyra Finley, Zoriyah Thornton and MaKiyah Matthews are simply stifling on the defensive side of the ball.
Upcoming (Ladies/ Men Doubleheaders)
Friday, Jan. 29 6:00 at Statesboro LCR Tipoff Show at 5:45 Tuesday, February 2 6:00 Home vs. Bradwell Institute LCR Tipoff Show at 5:45 The show: Thursday nights from 6-7:30 at Richmond Hill’s Pappas Pizza To Go (John and Mary Cave) will once again be the place to be. Fans can tune in to Lowcountryradio. com at 6 p.m. :, or come out to the socially-distanced tailgate atmosphere to see and hear the show face-to-face.
Since we’re in the middle of broadcasting the Wildcat basketball season, hoops coaches Bill Henderson and Sarah Jones will be the focus. But, we’ll also have players and other in-season guests like the wrestling team in this week and next week’s shows. As we get closer to baseball season, we’ll have Coach Scott Strickland. Check the show line-up below for details. We’ll even take calls from fans at 912-574-4384 LCR owner/founder Freddy Howell says, “It’s great we’re helping connect the community with the coaches and the team. It’s a community thing.”
Although the show airs live on Lowcountryradio. com, the show occasionally live streams on several Facebook pages: Low Country Radio, RHHS Cheerleaders and/or Pappas Pizza To Go.
The lineup: Men’s hoops: HC Bill Henderson, Liam Markgraf, Nijuan Youmans, Braden Baker Women’s hoops: HC Sarah Jones, Zariyah Thornton, Jessica Meyer.
Wrestling: HC Bill Evans, Kamdyn Munro, Tate Evans Cheerleaders: ALL Special Guest: TBA Booster Club :President Sandra Baker.
Statesboro used a full court press to stifle the Cats, and began knocking down their 3s, to go on that big 3rd quarter run. The Cats were looking