The last time Richmond and Lawson met at the Lawson Invitational, the Cardinals and Spartans battled into overtime for the tournament championship. In the end, the home team captured its second consecutive title with a 78-72 victory.
There were no such dramatics Monday night as the top-seeded Spartans easily dropped Lawson into the consolation bracket with a 74-39 win.
Richmond, now 5-3, will meet the winner of tonight’s first-round game between No. 4 seed Carrollton and No. 5 seed West Platte in the semifinals Thursday at 6 p.m.
With the Cardinals trying to slow down the Spartan attack with full-court, trap-style pressure, Richmond found open shots, especially from 3-point land. Richmond hit 10 3-pointers for the night with Jacob Swope knocking down 5 outside the arc on his way to a 25-point night. Four of his 3-pointers came in the first half as the Spartans took control of the game.
Blaine Broderick added 3 more 3-pointers to the long-range attack, and Kyle Carroll hit a pair.
Lawson scored the first 5 points of the game, but the rest of the night belonged to the Spartans. Richmond closed out the opening period with a 19-4 run and opened up a 37-14 cushion by the intermission as Swope connected on three buckets outside the arc in the second quarter.
The Spartans used their free throw advantage to pull away in the second half as Richmond ended the night going to the line 18 times and missing just 4, while Lawson was 4 of 7 from the stripe. Richmond hit 11 of 14 free throws over the final two periods.
Along with Swope, three other Spartans scored in double figures, with Robert Brewer providing the inside scoring with 13 points, while pulling down 7 rebounds. Broderick and Carroll each chipped in 10 points. Also scoring for Richmond were Jordan Smith with 6 points, James Vance with 5, Kyle Ash with 3 and Trey Folvarcik with 2.
Vance also grabbed 7 rebounds, with Smith and Carroll hitting the boards for 4 apiece.
Marcus Hales hit a pair of 3-point buckets to lead the Lawson scoring with 13 points, while Clark Hewitt added 10.