Big 2nd half helps Rockdale girls roll

ATLANTA -- The Rockdale girls basketball team had both sides of the ball working fine Tuesday in Atlanta.

Breanna Richardson had 18 points, Bianca Riley came off the bench to add 14 points and five assists, while the Bulldogs' defense forced 41 turnovers in a 63-39 victory over Druid Hills in Region 2-AAAAAA play.

Rockdale led by just six points at halftime, but opened things up with a dominant second half.

Druid Hills, which had just six made field goals in the second half, helped out a lot in the third, collecting 14 of its turnovers. Meanwhile, Riley, one of four Rockdale freshmen who are coming off an undefeated season at Conyers Middle School, drained consecutive 3-pointers, and later assisted on Richardson's 3-pointer as Rockdale built a lead as large as 16 in the third.

The fourth was more of the same. Rockdale capped a 13-0 run on another Riley bucket from long range to go up 59-35 with 4:10 to play, and the host Red Devils went 6:46 without a field goal.

The teams combined for 31 turnovers in the opening half, though both teams shot well. Rockdale started strong, forcing seven turnovers in the first four minutes of the game and built its largest lead at 16-6 on a field goal by Richardson at the 1:44 mark of the opening quarter.

Despite sloppy play from its offense, Druid Hills climbed back in the game and got as close as two points on two occasions, including 27-25 on Brooke Simpson's field goal with 2:32 left until halftime.

Sidney Fields, another freshman who played well off the bench, had a putback and a field goal for four of her eight points to help the Bulldogs go into the locker room up 32-26.

Kiera Johnson's double-double of 15 points and 10 rebounds led Druid Hills.

The Rockdale boys played Druid Hills in the nightcap, which ended too late for this edition.