So much for that zero in the win column.
The Mad Ants came to Sunday winless in three starts in the infant NBA D-League season, and exited it with a mark in the "W" column after beating winless Erie (0-3) 97-90 in Memorial Coliseum.
Not that it came easy.
Although the Ants never trailed after taking an 11-10 lead at the 7:33 mark of the first period, Erie made it interesting. Down 75-62 after Will Frisby wheeled inside to plant a short hook 39 seconds into the fourth quarter, the Bayhawks scored 12 of the next 14 points to close to within 77-74 at the 7:43 mark, then drew even at 83-83 when Justin Brownlee threw in a running hook with 4:16 to play.
Enter Mr. Dependable, Ron Howard.
The Mad Ant veteran answered with a jumper and a pair of free throws. And, after back-to-back buckets by CJ Leslie and Andre Jones narrowed it to 89-88 with 1:40 to run, Howard drove hard to the iron and muscled in another layup to stave off the Bayhawks again.
A pair of Sadiel Rojas free throws with 23 seconds showing pushed it to 93-88, and the crisis was past.
Howard scored 23 points and Trey McKinney-Jones added 22 to lead the Ants, who outrebounded Erie 47-40, forced 20 turnovers and made 13 steals.