ALBANY -- How about a dose of confidence to go with some killer defense and some outside shooting?
Not to mention a career night from Darrell Anthony.
Dougherty's Trojans got all that and more Saturday night in a 63-57 overtime win against Statesboro in their opening game of the U Save It Pharmacy Boys Basketball Tournament at Albany High, where Dougherty stormed back from a 10-point deficit late in the game, then put it away in overtime.
"We had confidence going into overtime,'' said Anthony, who poured in 25 points and grabbed 11 rebounds to lead Dougherty all night. "We were 100 percent confident. We had to have this game. We just had to bite down and play.''
Dougherty snatched it away from Statesboro, which broke through seven lead changes in the first half to take 34-25 halftime lead. The Blue Devils were leading, 51-41, with four minutes left in regulation when Dougherty stole the ball -- and the game -- with an unrelenting defense that forced seven turnovers in the final four minutes.
"We had them and we blew it,'' Statesboro coach Lee Hill said. "They came at us at the end, and we just turned the ball at the end of the game.''
Dougherty ripped off a 12-0 run, stopping Statesboro cold for four minutes to take a 53-51 lead. Anthony knotted the score with a put-back with 1:15 left, and Kendall Hicks came up wit a steal to start a fast break that ended with a drive from Alford Brown that lifted Dougherty to a 53-51 lead with a minute left. It was Brown's only two-point basket. He drilled six 3's, including a big trey in overtime, to finish with a career-high 20 points.
"He's Mr. Sharpshooter. That's what we call him,'' Anthony said. "He can shoot.''
Brown added: "We just had to finish it. We had to get it. When I hit the 3 (in OT) it felt great. I knew we were going to win it.''
Dougherty won this one with a hand-in-your-face defense that never quit. Statesboro was led by Zaquervian Smith, who scored 17 points in the first half. But Smith was held scoreless in the second half until he hit the basket on the night, a drive with 4.2 seconds left that sent the game into overtime at 53-53.
It didn't matter. By then Dougherty had all the momentum, and the Trojans took a 58-55 lead when Brown hit his final 3 of the night with 2:24 left.
Statesboro (3-5) couldn't answer and missed a shot with 2:04 left. Dougherty spread the floor until Hicks was fouled with 54 seconds left. He nailed both of them for a 60-55 lead, and Anthony dropped in two more free throws with 31 seconds left to all but end it. Smith, who finished with 20 points, finally scored a free throw (Statesboro scored just three points in OT) to close to 62-57 before Anthony ended it with a final free throw.
"They did a good job stopping (Smith) in the second half,'' Hill said.
Dougherty coach Donald Poole said that was the plan.
"We just had to play better defense in the second half,'' he said. "We were trying to keep the ball out of his hands. We're just trying to get better. We have a lot to work on.''
Still, getting an emotional win and watching Anthony have a career night can't hurt.
"We're trying to get him in the mix,'' Poole said of Anthony. "We're trying to get him where he needs to be.''
Dougherty (3-3) will now meet Albany High at 7 p.m. Monday in the second round of the tournament.