RICHMOND HOSTED Rangeley in an East-West Conference boys basketball game on Tuesday, with the Bobcats coming out on top, 68-50. Above, Richmond’s Matt Holt, right, defends Rangeley’s Ricky Thompson (35), while to the right, Bobcat guard Tyler Soucy (22) looks for room against a Lakers defender.

RICHMOND HOSTED Rangeley in an East-West Conference boys basketball game on Tuesday, with the Bobcats coming out on top, 68-50. Above, Richmond’s Matt Holt, right, defends Rangeley’s Ricky Thompson (35), while to the right, Bobcat guard Tyler Soucy (22) looks for room against a Lakers defender.

RICHMOND

It had been over 10 days since the Richmond boys high school basketball team played its last game. But early on in Tuesday night’s East-West Conference game against Rangeley, it didn’t look like it.

 

 

The Bobcats came out flying, scoring five out of the game’s first eight baskets and outscoring the Lakers by 13 in the first quarter en route to a comfortable 68-50 win.

Junior Matt Holt started the spree for Richmond, scoring three lay-ups in a row early and tallying all 13 of his points in the first half. On the last play of the quarter, Holt stole the ball at the top of the key, sprinted down the floor, and laid it in as the buzzer sounded.

“Matt Holt played a great first half,” Richmond coach Jonathan Spear said. “He was the driving force for us at the beginning because I didn’t really think they had an answer for him. He plays as a big guy but he’s got some moves and can handle the ball pretty well. He was huge for us.”

Holt and sophomore Zach Small, who led all scorers with 26 points and eight boards, combined for six straight buckets to close the first frame as part of a 12-2 Richmond run. The Bobcats eased up a bit in the second frame, but their lead was never seriously threatened.

“We got out and started running pretty well, but I think we got a little ahead of ourselves in the second quarter. We started trying to do that a bit too much and were turning it over. It was key bringing them all back, slowing them down a little bit and saying ‘listen we’ll run when we get the chance, but we don’t want to do it every time,’” Spear said.

A big portion of Richmond’s (6-3) first-half points came in quick transition, with Holt and Small running up the floor and finishing 1-on-1 or 2-on-2 lay-in chances. The plentiful baskets in tight allowed the Bobcats to shoot 54 percent from the field.

“We kept up the intensity,” Holt said. “We kept our hands active and we’re a pretty good team in transition.”

Rangeley (5-8) was led by 6-foot-3 junior Ricky Thompson, who paced the Lakers in scoring with 17 points and grabbed six rebounds. Thompson kept his team in the game with offensive putbacks and controlling the paint, but also stepped outside and hit a few outside jumpers.

The Lakers managed 39 percent shooting on eight free throws.

“In the first half, they beat us on the offensive boards,” Spear said. “That was one of the things we talked about at halftime, making the adjustments of hitting the boards and making sure we’re all attacking and crashing the basket. I thought that it paid off for us in the second.”

Rangeley opened the second half with a 7-2 run and briefly had the lead cut to five, but Richmond’s Tyler Soucy immediately countered with a 3-pointer and seven straight points of his own to put the Bobcats in cruise control once again.

The hosts forced 17 turnovers on defense and often turned missed shots into second chance points after the break. Even with Thompson guarding the rim, Spear’s emphasis on crashing the boards paid off.

“We’re a small team, so getting those offensive rebounds, that’s a big step for us. If we can get it from this game and carry it to the next game, that’s big for us,” Small said.

Sophomore Kyle LaRochelle had 14 points for Rangeley, while point guard Carl Trafton chipped in with 10. The visiting side hit 20 field goals to Richmond’s 26, despite taking four more attempts.

The Lakers’ starting five played the entire first half, and depth seemed to come into play as Richmond held a 51- 37 edge after three quarters. Each one of Spear’s 11 players saw the floor on Tuesday night — something he says will be a key heading into the final weeks of the season. Due to cancellations and rescheduling, Richmond has nine games slated over the next three weeks.

“It was nice to get back and play,” Spear said. “Getting back and playing, getting us moving again, and getting us working as a team. We got to use everybody, and I think it’s going to be key.”

The first of those games comes on Thursday when the Bobcats travel to SacopeeValleyfora7p.m.tip-off.

Richmond 68, Rangeley 50

Tuesday, at Richmond High School

Rangeley 9 16 12 13 50
Richmond 22 14 15 17 68

Rangeley — Carl Trafton 4-1-10, Kyle LaRochelle 6- 2-14, Devon Clark 1-0-2, Zachary Trafton 0-3-3, Ricky Thompson 7-2-17, Leo Perez 0-0-0, Callahan Crosby 1-0-2, Ian Lillis 1-0-2, Gaige Savage 0-0-0. Totals — 20-8-50. Richmond — Cody Tribbet 2-2-6, Tyler Soucy 4-2-12, Matt Holt 6-1-13, Brendan Emmons 0-0-0, Zach Small 11-3-26, Zack Marseglia 1-2-4, Nate Vintinner 0-0-0, Matt Rines 0-3-3, Nick Anan 2-0-4, Nate Kendrick 0-0-0, Nick Adams 0-0-0. Totals — 26-13- 68. 3-point field goals — (Rang) Carl Trafton, Ricky Thompson; (Rich) Tyler Soucy 2, Zach Small. Records — Richmond 6-, Rangeley 5-8. Up next for the Bobcats — Thursday at Sacopee Valley, 7 p.m.


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