LUMBERTON — The bracket’s in place for next week’s Robeson County Shootout and as expected, the first round offers up several gate-friendly matchups including one pitting local Three Rivers Conference rivals.
Last year’s boys runner-up Lumberton hosts South Robeson, Fairmont battles Red Springs, Purnell Swett entertains Dillon and tournament newcomer Richmond travels to St. Pauls to open play Wednesday.
Games involving girls teams start at 6 p.m. Boys will follow.
“I looked at records from last year and what they’ve done up until Monday since I had to turn into the booking agents to get officials,” said Jason Suggs, the athletic director for the Public Schools of Robeson County. “I think it’ll be another competitive tournament. Richmond adds a lot and they’re always a contender in the Southeastern Conference.
“They’re very athletic and I think they’ll push our kids to play harder.”
Saturday’s fifth, third-place and championship games will be played inside the English E. Jones Center at UNCP.
Admission is $6 for any round.
Red Devils grab first win
RED SPRINGS — When the Red Devils have played well under longtime coach Glenn Patterson, they’ve been guard-oriented.
During Monday’s 72-57 home victory over Lumberton, the backcourt dominated.
“Tonight we played hard and finally gave a total team effort,” Patterson said. “We’re getting better with more practices and experience under our belts. If we can keep a few of our guys on the straight path, we’re going to be fine.”
Three different Red Springs guards — Jameson Baker, CJ McGeachy and Jared Foster — contributed at least 17 points and three assists as the Red Devils won their first game in four tries this season.
Lumberton (4-4) has lost back-to-back games since handing Pine Forest its first loss last week.
In the girls game, Danny Graham’s Pirates turned up the heat defensively and held the Red Devils to their second-lowest point total this season during a 37-28 win.
Trojans too much for Rams
FAYETTEVILLE — Purnell Swett never got going offensively Monday at Pine Forest, dropping its fourth game of the season, 77-43.
Kendrick Purdie was a scoring threat with 12 points, but open shots were few and far between. On the girls side, the Trojans cruised, 67-39.
The Rams host defending Shootout champion West Bladen on Friday before taking on Dillon in the holiday tournament’s opening round the following week.
Reach staff writer Brad Crawford at firstname.lastname@example.org or follow him on Twitter @MrPalmettoSDS.