The Red Terrors’ opportunity to win a region title was crushed beneath a third-quarter barrage of 3-pointers Friday at The Glass Palace.
Richmond Hill sank 3-pointers on three consecutive possessions to permanently turn the tide in what, to that point, had been a back-and-forth affair and beat Glynn Academy 60-45 in the Region 2-6A Tournament boys championship game.
The Wildcats only four 3s in the contest, but three of them came in a span of under two minutes to spark a 14-2 run to end the third quarter, turning a 31-31 tie into a 45-33 lead entering the final period.
“They hit it at some crucial times,” said Terrors head coach Terrance Haywood. “I tell the kids, it’s not about how many points you score, but it’s when you score the points, and when they hit those 3s were some critical, critical times in the game.”
Baskets at crucial moments was a constant theme for Richmond Hill throughout the contest as it consistently finished quarters strong to stymie any momentum Glynn Academy had built up.
Max Hrdlicka scored 10 straight points in the first quarter to help the Terrors build a 14-4 lead with fewer than three minutes remaining, but the Wildcats scored the final four points of the period and continued the run with seven straight to open the second to take their first lead at 15-14 with 5:31 until halftime.
Glynn Academy answered back with five consecutive points before Richmond Hill rattled off an 11-2 spurt until Hrdlicka beat the buzzer on a 3 to keep his team within two at 26-24 going into the locker rooms.
But after a first half that saw Hrdlicka score 18 of the Terrors’ 24 points, the Wildcats held him to just four points in the second half, and the rest of the team wasn’t able to make up the scoring burden.
Glynn Academy generated open looks around the arc, it just couldn’t knock them down, and ultimately, that was the difference in the game.
“We knew we would had to have played a really good game to beat them,” Haywood said. “Shots that fell against Brunswick High and against Bradwell, they wouldn’t fall tonight. We had a hard time scoring the basketball tonight, and I think that was one of the biggest things.
“When we’re scoring the ball, and shots are falling, we tend to just play all around a little bit better, but you could see the kids just kind of getting frustrated with the shots not going.”
Richmond Hill kept Glynn pulled away in the third and kept Glynn from making up ground in the fourth to capture the Region 2-6A championship and a No. 1 seed in the state playoffs.
While the Terrors would have liked to have won its first region title since the 2009-10 season, they’ll settle for hosting a playoff game next week at The Glass Palace.
“Of course we’re disappointed we didn’t win a region championship, we set that goal going into the season, but then how the season started playing out, and we weren’t able to close out games, finished four in the region, had to play in the play-in game,” Haywood said. “We came in and beat Bradwell, and then to turn around and beat a really good Brunswick team, we felt like we did a good job to even be in this position to be playing for a region championship. I told the guys, I said, ‘Let’s just go out, let’s give everything we got, let’s play hard, and let’s just see what happens.’”