FISHERS, Ind. — Hamilton Southeastern’s Zak Irvin doesn’t get tired anymore. By now, he’s used to being on the floor for long periods of time.
That’s why he was able to have another big scoring game on back-to-back nights. Irvin scored a game-high 33 points to lead the host Royals to an 82-77 win over North Central on Saturday night.
“He’s capable and it’s hard to defend him,” Royals coach Brian Satterfield said. “With his length and the way he can get his shot off and when he gets going, it’s hard to stop him.”
Irvin had 30 points in Friday’s win over Zionsville.
“I’m used to getting this amount of minutes now,” Irvin said. “My body is used to . . . being able to play all game.”
Irvin wasn’t the only one to put up big numbers. Darius Latham had 29 points, 13 rebounds and five assists to lead the Panthers.
“They both played good games,” North Central coach Doug Mitchell said. “Two Indiana All-Star performances, without a doubt.”
Irvin scored the go-ahead jumper midway through the fourth quarter to give the Royals a 74-72 lead, and they led the rest of the way. In a game that was back and forth from the start, each team made only one significant run.
“It all starts with leadership,” Satterfield said. “I thought it was key tonight. After we got that lead, you could see our leaders bring everybody in collectively to try to talk about what they needed to get done.”
The Royals led 41-39 at halftime, then broke away at the start of the second half.
Paul Furlin hit a shot and Eric Davidson, who scored 18 points, hit two 3-pointers. Irvin made a 3-pointer and scored on a layup off a steal to give the Royals a 55-43 lead midway through the third quarter.
The Panthers weren’t done, though.
Perry Poindexter, who had 11 points and 12 rebounds, went to the line, made the first free throw and missed the second, but Jeff Harris scored on a putback.
Poindexter scored six more points in the spurt and Latham eventually tied the score at 59 from the free throw line after being fouled on a shot.
“They just made some shots,” Mitchell said. “I will not complain about the defense we played. They just made some very tough shots that were contested. I’ve always told my players that if we get beat like that, so be it.”