Scherry looks to break through in final year


Heritage Hills held a comfortable lead Tuesday night against Evansville Bosse, but coach Nate Hawkins wanted point guard Simon Scherry to make an adjustment during the game after the team took an ill-advised shot.


“He was feeling pretty good and started rolling, and I was like, ‘OK, now we’ve got to tighten it up a little bit because they’re going to come out, they’re going to start trapping us,’” Hawkins recalls about Tuesday’s game. “I just had to make sure that he understood that we’ve got to value the ball a little bit better and make the best decisions possible for this team.”

Hawkins, praising Scherry for being coachable with an ability to adjust quickly on the fly, said his senior guard made good on his promise to get it fixed.

Scherry had himself a 27-point outing in the Patriots’ 82-68 win against the Bulldogs at the University of Southern Indiana. However, this wasn’t just any game for Scherry and his teammates. This was payback. The Pats owned a 19-game winning streak heading into last year’s sectional opener when they met the Bulldogs. A 66-62 loss stopped Heritage Hills cold in its tracks, effectively ending the Patriots’ season that saw just one defeat beforehand.

“Them beating us last year, we had a chip on our shoulder,” Scherry said. “We wanted to come out and beat them. So, it felt good.”

Heritage Hills had a similar scenario two years ago when Scherry was a sophomore. The Pats won 20 games, including 10 in a row, but a 66-57 loss to Evansville Memorial in the sectional opener prevented them from achieving win No. 21 and continuing their season. Scherry is one of multiple veterans who play a prominent role for Heritage Hills. Seniors Murray Becher and Cole Sigler have been big contributors for the team, as has junior Blake Sisley. Senior Cayden Kratzer stepped up on Tuesday, totaling 14 points. Scherry said one area that has changed from last year is his composure.

He spent the summer working on his game and getting stronger. Scherry said he was part of a summer lifting program every day from 7 to 9 a.m. He usually went to the gym every other day, spending two to three hours in there. Scherry said he also focused on passing and ball handling, estimating he took 300 to 500 shots a day when he was in the gym.

“I needed to work on my mid-range a lot,” he said. “So, I worked on that, developed that a lot.”

Scherry has no shortage of confidence when he’s playing. He said his confidence stems from putting the basketball up a lot, and his shots going in. All that time spent in the gym, coupled with all the years he has played the game since he was younger, has given Scherry his confidence. Scherry knows he needs to get to the gym when his shots don’t fall. He’ll go there late at night, if need be, to try to restore his rhythm and watch his shots go. Scherry planned on making Wednesday one of those nights in the gym. He admitted he was off from behind the arc on Tuesday, shooting just 2 for 9 from downtown. Scherry said he is hard on himself, especially when it comes to shooting. He expects to make every shot, though he knows that will never be the case.

He added that sometimes it is his fault if a shot doesn’t go in, because he doesn’t always take the best shots. Scherry said the confidence he has in his shot in unlimited, even though there are some that he shouldn’t take. Some may be too quick or contested, or maybe a teammate has a better look than he does.

“I’ll take it because I have enough confidence to just shoot it,” Scherry said.

Scherry is focused on being a leader for Heritage Hills in his final year of high school. He’s looking to have everybody involved and keeping things fun, which he said translates into making it easier to play. Scherry said loving his teammates and seeing them every day is what makes things fun. He strives to lead both vocally and by example. Scherry knows basketball is a long game, and believes in staying level-headed. However, he said he could do better as a leader, too. He said his actions need the most work because he reacts more than he probably should. Scherry said he might speed up and make a bad pass during crunch time, which he said comes from him trying to do too much. He said he needs to make the play that is there instead of worrying about making too good of a pass.

Leadership may be an area Scherry wants to work on, but it’s also an element in which Hawkins holds him in high regard.

“He’s a very emotional kid,” Hawkins said. “I think he’s a great leader. He’s a very good vocal leader, and he also is a very good leader by example, because he does work so hard.”

Scherry is trying to make the most of what will be the end of the line for his basketball career after the season ends. He signed to play baseball at the University of Evansville in late November. Scherry said Ball State University and Wright State University were also possibilities at one point, but really liked the coaching staff the Aces had, and said he has friends on the team. He believes he can play hard, lead and produce for Evansville. Scherry intends to major in electrical engineering.

He said he’ll miss the “go” aspect of basketball, since he has a very high motor. Choosing to play baseball in college and put the basketball down for good after high school was not an easy decision.

“It was really hard, but in the end, I was just thinking about my future, in general, and I thought baseball was the better option,” he said.

Scherry has one final opportunity to help give a whole generation of Heritage Hills fans something they’ve never seen before — a sectional championship. The Pats last won a sectional crown during the 2002-03 season. Heritage Hills has been one-and-done in each of Scherry’s first three years of high school. The Pats have played three times for the sectional championship since last winning one. Their most recent championship game appearance came in 2016 when Scherry was in eighth grade. However, a familiar foe in Evansville Bosse dashed their sectional dreams that year, too, besting the Patriots, 68-36 in the title game.

He’s hoping Heritage Hills can start off with a sectional championship, and keep on building from there.

“To break that and just finally win that sectional would be huge,” Scherry said.

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