If the Liverpool boys basketball team rises to great heights this season, it might look to a single three-point play in Camillus as the moment where it started to turn around.
Locked in a fierce defensive battle with West Genesee last Tuesday night, the Warriors, attempting to avoid its fourth consecutive defeat, got the clutch basket it needed to push past the Wildcats 41-38.
Motivation is always present against West Genesee, the team Jerry Wilcox once coached before coming to Liverpool five years ago. What helped was that two WG starters, Kevin Wadach and Casey Reale, would not play.
With full knowledge of the Wildcats' system, the Warriors would play superb defense, especially in the second half after WG took a 24-20 advantage.
Mainly, Liverpool centered its efforts on containing the Wildcats' top scorer, Chris Cruz, who had 56 combined points in his previous two games against Baldwinsville and Watertown.
Preventing him from driving to the glass, Liverpool held Cruz to 10 points, and did an equally effective job on the inside as it limited sophomore center Jack Conboy to just six points.
In the fourth quarter, Liverpool rallied by holding WG to two points, yet still found itself in a 38-38 tie as regulation time wound down.
Finding an open lane, T.J. Davis drove to the basket, scored -- and was fouled. He sank the free throw, and the Warriors did not let the Wildcats answer at the end.
For the night, Davis had 16 points, while Mike Marsella proved to be Liverpool's other main offensive option, earning 12 points.