JOHNSON CITY — Dobyns-Bennett coach Charlie Morgan seemed downright nostalgic on Saturday night as he talked of seeing “the Josh Holt of old” reemerge for his basketball team in a 61-52 win over Cleveland in the Kia Classic.
Holt broke loose for 12 points, making him one of five Indians to score in double figures in the Tribe’s win over the Blue Raiders on the final day of the two-day event at Science Hill.
Of course, Morgan’s memory of the sophomore’s tremendous effort during a basketball camp at Virginia Tech happened just six months ago. But such is life when you’re coaching a young basketball team.
Playing so many young players has led to mixed results for Morgan so far. On Friday night against a powerhouse Oak Ridge squad, the Indians scored just eight points in the second half and seemed intimidated before coming out on the wrong end of a one-sided result.
But on Saturday, the Tribe rallied from a one-point deficit at the half and looked like a veteran squad while finishing off Cleveland. Morgan said the intimidation he saw in his players’ eyes on Friday was nowhere to be found 24 hours later.
“I thought tonight that never creeped in,” Morgan said. “Tonight, I thought we battled to the end. I thought the big thing was how sophomores stepped up for us. John Fulkerson did a real nice job and we had really nice perimeter play.
“To have five guys in double figures like that, that’s a really good indication we were sharing the ball.”
For the boxscore and the complete story on the game, pick up a copy of the Dec. 23 edition of the Times-News.