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High school basketball: Irvin pours in 30 to lead Royals over Zionsville

12:00 AM, Dec. 14, 2012 EST

Hamilton Southeastern senior Zak Irvin puts up a shot during first half action of boys varsity basketball at Zionsville High School Friday, Dec. 14, 2012. Irvin scored 30 in the Royals' 66-59 win. / Doug McSchooler/for The Star

ZIONSVILLE, Ind. -- Although Hamilton Southeastern senior Zak Irvin's outside shot wasn't falling, he remained patient.

"I just keep telling myself to get to the free throw line and knock down shots, which I did, and get to the hole," the Michigan recruit said.

The 6-8 Irvin scored 30 points to propel the Class 4A No. 7 Royals to a 66-59 victory over the Eagles in Hoosier Crossroads Conference action Friday night.

"It's a long day to keep him in front and out of the paint," Zionsville coach Shaun Busick said. "One step for him is like five for one of our guys. He's so long. He just knows how to play basketball. I think he's going to start as a freshman for Michigan and they're one of the top five teams in the country. I think he's that good."

Irvin made 11-of-19 shots and 7-of-9 free throws. He was 1-of-7 from 3-point range.

The Royals (7-1, 3-0) led 34-24 at halftime, but the Eagles (3-2, 1-2) came back to take a 41-40 lead on an Andrew Dakich 3-pointer late in the third quarter. The Eagles took a 44-42 lead on Braden Hall's 3-pointer to start the fourth quarter.

"Zionsville is a great team so we knew they were going to make a run," Irvin said. "We just had to come back and make plays on the offensive and defensive end."

Junior guard Eric Davidson sank a 3-pointer to give the Royals a 49-46 lead in the fourth quarter.

"That's what his specialty is, to be able to knock down those shots," Royals coach Brian Satterfield said.

Davidson finished with 10 points. Junior guard Tyler Jenkins added 12.

"When they took the lead, there wasn't any panic in our guys. They stayed together," Satterfield said. "We started getting stops, and we started attacking the basket. Zak did a great job with that along with some other guys."

Satterfield said he knew the Eagles were good shooters.

"They did a great job moving without the basketball in the first half and they got some good looks," said Satterfield, whose team will host 4A No. 10 North Central tonight. "We were trying to limit some of those shots beyond the arc, but they had some good ball movement and hit some big shots."

Dakich was high for the Eagles with 23 points, hitting 4-of-7 3-pointers.

"Andrew wasn't hunting shots, he let the offense work for him," Busick said. "When you do that, you're going to play better. He played a lot better. I was proud of his effort."

Sophomore Derrik Smits, the 6-10 son of former Indiana Pacers center Rik Smits, had 12 points on 6-of-11 shooting.

"We laid an egg last week against Brownsburg (in an overtime loss) and played the worst game we played in a long time," Busick said. "(Friday night) the effort, the intensity, the focus of our guys was outstanding in a losing effort. I thought we took a step forward.

"But I'm not pleased with the loss. It's a game we had the lead in the fourth quarter. We need to hold on and learn to win a game against an elite team."



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