RICHLAND — Davis may be the No. 1-ranked 4A team in the state, but to Richland coach Earl Streufert, the Pirates were the team the Bombers should have beaten Friday night at Art Dawald Gym.
"I never really believe in the rankings until a week after the state tournament," Streufert said after a close 64-61 loss.
Richland used a 12-2 fourth-quarter run to cut Davis' lead to 62-61 with 50 seconds remaining but couldn't squeeze any more points out of an offense that appeared playoff ready.
"You can't blow as many shots as we did and commit (16) turnovers and still expect to win," Streufert said.
Actually, the Bombers didn't commit any turnovers over the final 7 minutes of the game. They even had a chance to take the lead after Tyrell Turner drove the lane, drew the defense and dished off to Nathan Streufert cutting to the basket.
But Streufert's layin attempt bounced off the backboard and rolled off the right side of the rim, and Turner fouled Davis guard Raymond Navarro trying to get the rebound.
Navarro hit both free throws to put the Pirates up 64-61 with 20 seconds left.
That set up one final possession for the Bombers, who got a good look at a 3-pointer from Streufert at the top of the key.
"He shoots those every day in practice. I thought it was going in," said Richland guard Payton Radliff. "We didn't really have a play. We should have set one up, but we didn't have any timeouts left."
Coach Streufert said it came down to making a play when it counted.
"You can write up all you want. Davis is going to pressure you, so you end up having to make a basketball play," he said.
Davis coach Eli Juarez had a good look at the shot from the other sideline, but he was holding his breath on Nathan Streufert's potential game-tying shot.
"Our defense wasn't too bad for that last 20 seconds. I saw (Levonte) Allen put up his hand, which may have affected the arc of the shot," Juarez said.
Radliff was one of the catalysts of the Bombers' late run, stealing the ball at midcourt and converting a layin with 2:40 left after Streufert hit a shot while falling down in the lane. On Richland's next possession, Radliff took a pass from Turner and hit a 3-pointer from the top of the key to cut it to 60-56.
The teams traded a pair of free throws before Turner hit another trey on the left wing to make it 62-61.
The game went back and forth for most of the first three quarters, featuring 11 lead changes and four ties before the Bombers committed seven turnovers in the third quarter. That opened the door for a 13-5 Davis run to close out the frame, putting the Pirates up 54-47 heading into the last 8 minutes.
Adam Baker found his shooting stroke early in the game, connecting on four of five 3-pointers in the first half. He led all scorers with 23 points, finishing with five treys.
"It would have been really nice to get a win," Baker said.
Raymond Navarro got hot for the Pirates, too, scoring 13 first-half points and leading his team with 17. Richland also had a difficult time containing Allen, Davis' 6-foot-4 post who pulled down nine rebounds to go with 15 points.
"Allen came out like a man on a mission," said Pirates guard David Trimble, who finished with 10 points, seven rebounds and five steals. "He's so important to us. We ask him to do a lot every night, so we like to reward him."
With one game left in the regular season, Davis (16-2, 11-0 CBBN 4A) and Richland (11-8, 8-3) have sealed up the Nos. 1 and 2 seeds to the CBBN district playoffs beginning next Friday. The Pirates and Bombers, however, earn first-round byes and will play host to first-round winners on Saturday, Feb. 11 at 7 p.m.
DAVIS -- Kupp 14, Trimble 10, Wright, Luckett 2, Allen 15, Raymond Navarro 17, Vijarro 6, Lizotte. Totals 22-53 15-17 64.
RICHLAND -- Turner 9, Adam Baker 23, Payton Radliff 9, Streufert 13, Quick 2, Fuller, Malone, Wheeler 3, Hilty 2. Totals 22-57 9-11 61.
Davis 18 15 21 10 -- 64
Richland 18 16 16 14 -- 61
Highlights -- Rebounds: D 36 (Levonte Allen 9), R 32 (Colter Quick 6, Baker 6); 3-pointers: D 5x14 (Navarro 3), R 9x25 (Baker 5); Turnovers: D 20, R 16; Assists: D 10 (Cooper Kupp 5), R 18 (Tyrell Turner 6, Quick 6); Steals: D 8 (Trimble 5), R 8 (Turner 3, Quick 3); Allen 2 blocks.