Hornets fight off Yellow Jackets

02/13/2013 12:14 AM

02/13/2013 12:15 AM

After finishing the regular season with back-to-back losses, Lower Richland’s boys basketball squad returned to winning form in the first round of the Class 3A tournament.

The Diamond Hornets led by as much as 18 points on the way to defeating Greer, 76-69, at home Tuesday.

With 2:53 remaining, Greer’s Danta Fleming hit a 3-pointer that cut Lower Richland’s lead to single digits for the first time since the second quarter. Greer posted 34 points in the final period but couldn’t close the gap.

“We have to learn how to put people away. We’re working on it,” coach Willie Thomas said.

Lower Richland took an early lead in the face of Greer’s man-to-man defense, but 3-pointers from Jameal Robinson and Labryan Shiflet kept the game close through the first quarter.

In the second, Lower Richland began to pull away.

Capitalizing on four Greer turnovers, the Diamond Hornets expanded their one-point lead to nine in a four-minute stretch and outscored Greer 22-8 in the period to take a 35-20 lead into the break.

Vincent Hicklin posted 17 points in the half and finished with 29 points and 10 rebounds.

“I’m proud of Vincent,” Thomas said. “It’s one of his best games, and he played like a big man tonight.”

Fleming led the Yellow Jackets with 17 points.

The Diamond Hornets next will play host to Chester on Friday. Chester beat Emerald 67-59 on Tuesday night.

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