By LLOYD COMBS
Bluefield Daily Telegraph
RICHLANDS, Va. —
Off-night, a non-district affair, and both teams were off their game in the first half.
In the second half Richlands however, recovered. Grundy did not.
The Lady Blues took the lead just before halftime and pulled away to a 46-36 win over its longtime rival Wednesday evening at Richlands Middle School.
Brittany Allen scored a game-high 23 points, exactly half of Richlands’ total and had three steals. The Lady Blues (15-3) forced 14 turnovers, a high number in a low-scoring game and they turned most of them into points.
“We’ve got a big district game here with Tazewell Friday and Grundy was coming off a big district win over Twin Valley in their district, I think that was part of the slow start,” Richlands coach Dennis Palmer said. “The focus and intensity may not have been there early.
“But I think we picked it up defensively in the second half. Grundy’s got those good shooters and they’ve got (Morgan) Hall who can score inside or out and I think we matched up really well with them and played very good defense.”
No one else scored in double figures for the Lady Blues, but they made up for it in other ways in avenging one of their three losses this season.
Rachel Alley pulled down 13 rebounds and blocked four shots, while McKenley Davis grabbed nine rebounds and scored nine points for Richlands. Cass Richardson handed out seven assists and Sarah Compton hauled in six rebounds.
Grundy settled for perimeter shots most of the night and was just 12-of-48 (25 percent) from the field. Hall was the lone double figure scorer for the Lady Wave with 12 points and grabbed 12 boards to finish with a double-double.
The Lady Wave (15-5) have a makeup game tonight at Twin Valley in BDD play.
Richlands hosts Tazewell in a key SWD contest Friday and would force a playoff with Carroll County for the regular season crown with a win.
Allen 23, Davis 9, R. Alley 7, Richardson 3, Compton 2, Ashiq 0, Casey 0, H. Alley 2, Hearl 0.
Hall 12, Cantrell 2, Charles 4, Webb 2, Snead 0, Lane 2, Owens 8, Sperry 3, Yates 3, Kyle 0, Williams 0, Thornsbury 0.
Grundy.................................11 10 4 11 — 36
Richlands............................8 14 10 14 — 46
3-point goals - Gru 3 (Hall, Yates, Sperry), Rich 4 (Allen 2, Davis, Richardson).
Richlands 83 Grundy 58
The Richlands boys picked up their third win in a rebuilding season and got its second in as many tries over Grundy in Wednesday’s nightcap.
Gabe Hunsaker scored a game-high 25 points and Ben Brown added 22 to lead the Blue Tornado, who opened the second half on a 12-2 run to build a 48-29 lead and coasted the rest of the way.
“I think it’s something about the match-ups when we play Grundy,” Richlands coach Jody Fuller said. “I felt we forced tempo and got some turnovers, especially there in the second half.”
Grundy (3-17) turned the ball over 27 times overall in playing its third game in as many nights. Dylan Billiter paced the Golden Wave with 19 points.
Brown posted a double-double with 10 steals as well as nine rebounds and five assists for the Blues, who host Carroll County in SWD play tonight. Kyle Call scored 10 points.
Grundy plays at Twin Valley tonight.
C. McCoy 6, Billiter 19, J. McCoy 4, Cehajic 8, Dillow 7, Viars 6, Nash-Cleek 0, Hawkins 3, Harr 5.
Call 10, Davis 4, Brown 22, Hunsaker 25, Johnson 4, Anderson 5, Sahyouni 3, Moir 2, Meadows 8, Austin 0.
Grundy................................................................13 14 16 15 — 58
Richlands...........................................................21 15 25 22 — 83
3-point goals – Gru 4 (Billiter 3, Harr), Rich 8 (Hunsaker 4, Brown 3, Davis).