By Mike Battreall | For The Herald Bulletin
ANDERSON — Anderson High School boys basketball coach Jeff Howard admitted after Saturday’s 80-64 defeat to Zionsville that it gets old going over another defeat with reporters and saying this is a work in progress, yet he willfully and patiently does so.
“I’m going to tell you again, I love these boys, and I’ll go to my grave telling you that,” said Howard, the Indians’ first-year coach and the program’s fourth in three seasons. “But we have so much basic skills to work on with our kids, and it’s not just varsity.”
Howard — whose 4-16 squad fell for the 10th straight time — said the Eagles (15-5) beat the Indians by playing no-frills basketball.
“They do the simplest things that you can do in basketball, give, go, pass, cut,” he said. “And of course (as he was doing a shooting motion), they knocked down shots.”
The Eagles worked for their baskets and in turn built two huge leads, whereas Anderson’s looks weren’t as easy to come by, and it in turn forced shots.
But it wasn’t as bad, percentage-wise, as many other nights. Anderson did shoot 25-of-56 (44.6 percent) and made 9 of 22 3-point attempts. Zionsville ended at just over 50 percent (27-of-52) and 7-for-14 from long range.
And for the second time in less than 24 hours, the Indians were competitive deep in the contest against a quality foe.
Anderson trailed Class 4A No. 3 Logansport by four at halftime Friday, and against Zionsville likewise found itself down by just four in the second half, after trailing 41-28 at intermission.
Brandon Haralson bookended the Indians’ 9-0 run to begin the half, and he converted on a steal by Zakarius Milhouse to make it 41-37 at the 5:30 mark of the third quarter.
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