by Beau Wicker
The previous four Logansport-Anderson matchups in boys basketball were classic contests — an epic comeback by the Berries in their final game ever at the Wigwam, back-to-back double-overtime thrillers in the Berry Bowl and a game won by the Indians on a last-second shot by Trey Boyd a year ago.
But on Friday night in the Berry Bowl, it was pretty much all Anderson. The Indians throttled the Berries 66-46 in the always important North Central Conference opener.
The Indians shot a scorching 61.9 percent from the field (26 of 42) while holding the slumping Berries to just 34 percent (18 of 53).
“Coming back after last Friday’s game when we kind of gave it away [at Class 3A No. 5 Guerin Catholic], I thought we played really well,” Anderson coach Joe Nadaline said. “I thought we played under control, something that a veteran team needs to do, and we did that. We saw the mismatches, we really took advantage of the mismatches and basically controlled the game from the onset and never really let them back in the game.”
Jalin Beard scored 20 points to lead the Indians (3-2). Chris Lemon and Armon Daniels added 12 apiece, and Trey Boyd had nine.
Antonio Penny led the Berries (4-3) with 18 points, but he shot just 7 of 18 from the field. He added eight assists and seven rebounds.
“Penny’s a very, very good player,” Nadaline said. “But we put some different guys on him from time to time, just made him work for his stuff, because we knew he can’t really ... he doesn’t come out of the game, and we’ve got to make him play defense, too. So from that standpoint, I thought we did a good job with him there.”
Jayson Higgins added 12 points for Logan, and Bo Bullard chipped in seven.
“We had some looks at it, we just didn’t knock it down,” Logan coach Mark Victor said. “It was just a tough night all the way around.”
The Berries have now lost three straight after a 4-0 start. Victor was expecting his squad to give the Indians a better game.
“We played them in the summer time, we played them over at Indiana Wesleyan, we played them a pretty tough game,” he said. “Man for man we didn’t really match up that well, but I thought we could really slow them down defensively and do some things that might stop them. But Beard ends up with 20, Lemon ends up with 12, Daniels ends up with 12. We really hadn’t counted on Daniels scoring that many.
“We just didn’t really do anything to slow them down. We knew they were averaging about 65 points per game coming into the game, and we didn’t really put up any kind of resistance. We played a little man, a little zone, we didn’t really do anything to slow them down. It’s kind of disheartening.”
The Indians led 16-6 after one quarter, 35-18 at halftime and 53-32 after three quarters.
The Berries opened the fourth quarter with four quick points, and Bullard had a good look from 3 that could have cut it to 14, but the shot was off the mark and the Berries would get no closer the rest of the way. The Indians led as much as 64-41 after a Lemon basket with 1:40 left to play.
“They shot well, we didn’t shoot well,” Victor said. “Once we got down we just couldn’t really mount a run to get back into it.”
Logan travels to McCutcheon tonight.