Scherry's surge lifts Patriots to PAC superiorityFebruary 15, 2019
By HENDRIX MAGLEY
LINCOLN CITY — Simon Scherry admits that Friday night didn’t exactly start out the way he planned.
The Heritage Hills junior guard missed a few shots and just felt that he was a little out of rhythm.
At the halftime break, he took ownership of his first half struggles and vowed to play better in the second half.
How did he respond? He scored all 16 of the Patriots third quarter points en route to a huge second half as Heritage Hills secured its first outright Pocket Athletic Conference championship since 2003 by defeating Tell City, 60-50.
“When I went into the locker room at halftime, I said I had a rough first half and I told the guys that I owed them,” said Scherry, who finished with a career-high 28 points. “I just wanted to go out for the team and let the cards fall where they may.”
Scherry’s head coach, Nate Hawkins, says there’s a never-ending list of things that the guard can accomplish and it seems he pulls new tricks out of his sleeve on a nightly basis.
Hawkins simply calls the variety of skills that Scherry brings to the table “Just Simon Things”.
“He’s got a motor on him and I’ve never coached a kid quite like this one,” Hawkins said. “He has the basketball in his hands 95 percent of the time, if not 100 percent, and he never comes out of the game but he never complains. He’s finishing right, finishing left, hitting step back three-pointers — he’s just a phenomenal basketball player.”
Tell City came out with a fiery intensity and jumped to a 10-3 lead right away as senior forward Braeden Beard scored the first eight points of the night for the Marksmen.
The Patriots (20-1, 8-0) did respond with some buckets from Scherry and Blake Sisley late in the quarter but they still found themselves trailing 16-11 after one quarter of play — a rare deficit for the Patriots.
“They came out and punched us in the gut,” Hawkins said. “We had to grind it out and get some stops because they gave us their best fight.”
Sisley added: “We didn’t come out of the gate like we normally do and that kind of woke us up. We got some stops and scores to help us rally back after that.”
The Patriots didn’t take their first lead until right before halftime as Sisley drove in the lane and completed an and-one to put the Patriots up 22-20 at the break.
Then, the Simon Scherry show happened. The junior guard scored all 16 of the Patriots points in the third quarter in a variety of ways — layups, three-pointers and a dunk off of a Tell City turnover.
“He’s a great player and our team runs through him, whether he has to score, pass or defend,” Sisley said about Scherry. “You just have to give him the ball when he’s hot like that.”
Tell City (16-5, 7-1) wasn’t going to go away quietly. Even though they were down 38-26 heading into the final quarter, the Marksmen had the lead trimmed to as little as eight points in the fourth quarter.
However, Heritage Hills knocked down their foul shots during the final stretch and Sisley’s monster jam with about 30 seconds left sealed the deal as the Patriots clinched the PAC regular season title with a 60-50 victory over the Marksmen.
Simon Scherry led the way in scoring for Heritage Hills with 28 points while Murray Becher added 15 points and Blake Sisley finished with 13.
Braeden Beard led the Marksmen with 22 points while Trent Arnold added 15 points — all coming from the three-point line.
The PAC title is the second championship the Patriots have accomplished this year, after winning the PSC Holiday Tourney in December by defeating, you guessed it, Tell City.
While these championships are great for the Patriots, they still have their sights set on a little bit more.
“There was a lot at stake for both ends — you know, we love to share but we don’t like to share titles,” Hawkins said. “We celebrate championships all the time because I want these kids to understand how that feels. That’s the culture we’ve built with this group.”
Scherry added: “You want to get into the championships during the season to be ready for the championships in the postseason. It’s huge to play in games where there’s something on the line because in the sectional, there’s always going to be something to play for.”
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