ESSEX -- It wasn't over at halftime, but during the third quarter Richland (8-11) stepped its defense up another level as the Rebels only allowed Risco's Tigers (5-12) to score three points.
Richland, who held a seven-point lead at the half, scored 24 points in the third quarter to take an easy 80-51 win.
"I thought we played well," said Richland head hoach Jimmy Lincoln. "Risco was hitting their open shots in the first half, but in the third quarter I thought we did a good job of shutting them down. We stepped our defensive pressure up in the second half and I really thought that was one of the major factors in our win tonight."
The Rebels opened on a seven point run, highlighted by a three from junior Scott McGarity. McGarity had four treys in the contest for the Rebels and finished with 15 points.
Risco would cut the lead back to four with 1:09 left in the first quarter on back-to-back threes from Kyle Carlisle and Greg Landers.
Richland started the second quarter with a 5-0 drive that gave the Rebels a ten point lead at 23-13.
The lead, though, would soon collapse as junior Luke Carter began to dominate for the Tigers.
Carter scored six points within a two minute span to cut the Rebels' lead to four again, this time at 25-21.
Risco would not be able to complete the comeback though as Sherome Cole and McGarity would combine for six points to put the Rebels back up eight.
The Tigers would once more cut the lead to four with 0:55 seconds left in the first half, but Cole hit a bucket with two seconds left to give Richland a 39-32 lead at intermission.
Richland, to begin the third quarter, went on a 15-0 run to finish off the Tigers.
Senior Josh McMullin had the crowning shot in the drive as his trey put the Rebels up 54-32, giving Richland a 22-point lead with 3:31 left in the third quarter.
After the run, Richland never faltered.
"Scott McGarity really stepped up his game tonight and helped us out," said Coach Lincoln. "Obviously Sherome (Cole) got his 20 points and I thought Nelson's 11 points really came at key times for us.
"We are beginning to play really good basketball now. I hope we can continue this throughout the rest of this season."