Albany-Broadmoor boys J.J. Doherty

J.J. Doherty (32) scores for Albany against Broadmoor.

ALBANY – Things started just fine for the Albany basketball team, but once Broadmoor got rolling, the Bucs were tough to stop.

Broadmoor erased an early Hornet lead and got a big run to start the third quarter on its way to a 64-52 victory at Albany on Tuesday.

“I can’t complain about the effort playing against a team that’s that athletic,” Albany coach Chris Carter said after his team fell to 2-7 in its first game since defeating Springfield in mid-December. “It’s a 4A team.”

“I preach to mine the first three minutes of the first half and the first three minutes of the second half, that’s going to dictate who wins,” Carter continued. “Ya’ll won the first three minutes of the first half, but not the second.”

Albany started the game on a 14-3 run, with J.J. Doherty scoring eight of his game-high 29 points during the stretch.

Carter said he’d like to get some scoring help for Doherty, who was the only Hornet in double digits.

“I don’t have another guy that’s going to go out and get 15 points a night,” Carter said. “I think he’s (Doherty) averaging right around 20 on the year. It’s tough when defenses have to guard more than one person. He’s able to get that with defenses focusing on him. If we had another threat from the outside, or even another presence from the inside, it would open it up even more. Fifty-two points is a little bit higher than our average probably on the year. We have to get better on defense at the same time because offense, we’re not going to get better overnight. Defense, with intensity and effort, you make it more of a game.”

Broadmoor’s Deonta Comager turned a pair of steals into baskets during a run which cut the lead to 14-12 before a basket by Albany’s Demarcus Williams put the Hornets ahead 16-12 at the end of the first quarter.

The Bucs scored the first two baskets of the second quarter, with Giquise Lebeuf tying the score at 16-16 before a pair of buckets by Doherty put the Hornets ahead 20-16.

Comager hit a 3-pointer, and Noah Jones two during a run that put the Buccaneers ahead 30-23 before Broadmoor went into halftime ahead 31-25.

“I thought our full-court press right there to start the game troubled them,” Carter said. “They turned it over quite a bit to start. We got a big lead … but we got complacent. We didn’t keep up the same energy, and they gathered energy. As the game went on, No. 3 (Comager) really hurt us … He had some really good penetration and dishing going on and some good decision-making down low, and then No. 1 (Jones) was feeling it from the outside …”

“It’s hard to check them man, and then when you go zone and they have a shooter and you can’t locate him, it’s kind of pick your poison,” Carter said. “I thought we battled. We couldn’t ever turn the corner.”

Comanger finished with 23 points, including two 3-pointers, while Jones had 16 points with four 3-pointers.

The Bucs capitalized on Albany turnovers to open the third quarter, pushing the lead to 42-29 on Comager’s transition layup.

Albany clawed back, with Dylan McAlister scoring five points during a burst which cut the lead to 44-38.

Doherty’s inside basket got Albany within 47-40, but Comager’s 3-pointer at the buzzer put Broadmoor ahead 52-40 going into the fourth quarter.

Another inside basket by Doherty allowed Albany to cut the lead to 57-50 with under four minutes to play, but Broadmoor went 3-for-4 at the line in a 7-2 burst to close out the game.

Carter said he’s also pleased with his team’s growth with district play starting next week.

“I think J.J.’s trying,” Carter said. “I think he’s showing a lot out there, and he’s giving a lot of effort. He’s becoming more of a leader. Also my guards, they’re getting better, and that’s what it’s about, because if we would have played this team a month ago, they might have beat us by 30-35. Like I told them …, the harder the opponent you play pre-district, the more you’re going to be able to hang in those games come district, the you can beat those teams any given night – those athletic teams, because that’s all we have in district …”

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