CHARLOTTESVILLE — The Albemarle boys basketball team used a dominant second half to pick up a victory in the first round of The Daily Progress Holiday Hoops Classic on Friday at Charlottesville High School.
The Patriots found their groove on offense after halftime in their 62-45 win over Liberty.
Albemarle got off to a slow start against Liberty, scoring only 16 first-half points to fall behind by 10 at the halftime break.
"I thought we were very lethargic on the offensive end in the first half," Albemarle coach Greg Maynard said.
The Patriots snapped out of their offensive funk in the second half, outscoring the Minutemen 46-19 after halftime to turn a double-digit deficit into a double-digit victory.
One of the catalysts for the second-half turnaround was Maynard's decision to implement some full-court pressure defense to help give his players a jolt and stymie Liberty's offense.
"It was more to get them playing aggressive. That was the main thing," Maynard said of the decision to go to the full-court press. "And when something works, you stay with it. It got to the point where [Liberty] started making mistakes because they were rushing. We were doing that in the first half, then they were doing it in the second half."
Josh Morse finished with a double-double, tallying 17 points and 10 rebounds to lead four Patriots in double figures. Justin Murkey added 12 points and five rebounds, while Cam Johnson chipped in 11 and Will Horsby finished with 10 for AHS.