WU’s Himes is Coach of Year, seven local boys earn All-Conference honors –
By Mark Carpenter –
On the same day that the girls basketball coaches in the Southern Hills Athletic Conference selected their All-Conference Team, the boys coaches of the SHAC did the same, casting their votes for the young men who would take home All-SHAC honors for the 2017-18 season. Adams County was again well-represented, earning the Coach of the Year and placing seven individual players on the All-SHAC squad.
Leading the way were three selections from the West Union Dragons, who surprised all the pundits and won the SHAC big school division title with a 10-3 conference mark, and that performance earned a trio of Dragons sports on the All-SHAC Team, led by senior Elijah McCarty. McCarty averaged over 15 points a game, shooting 46% from the field, snaring 4.5 rebounds and dishing out 3.5 assists a game. The West Union senior guard was joined on the All-Conference team by a pair of junior teammates in 6’1” guard Ryan Rothwell and 6’1” guard Bowan Tomlin.
Rothwell put up 11 points a game for the Dragons, shooting 52% from the field, and hauling in 3.5 rebounds a game, while Tomlin scored 12 a game, shot 45% from the floor, and grabbed 4.6 boards per contest.
Adams County had a clean sweep of the SHAC titles this season, as the Peebles Indians, with a conference record of 11-2, were champions of the SHAC’s small school division. The Indians placed two players on the All-SHAC team, led by outstanding senior guard Tanner Arey, who also was later named as the SHAC Player of the Year. Arey had a memorable senior campaign, eclipsing the 1,000 point mark for his career, and averaging over 22 points a game for the district champion Indians. Arey also pulled in 6 rebounds a game, dished out 3 assists, and shot an impressive 82% from the free throw line.
Joining his teammate on the All-SHAC squad was Peebles senior Bostin Robinson, who broke through with a senior season that saw him score over 18 points a game and grab 5 rebounds a game as part of a 1-2 punch that has propelled the Indians to the Division IV regional tournament.
One of the young bloods on the All-SHAC team is North Adams 6’2” sophomore Austin McCormick. McCormick was selected by the coaches after a year that saw him score 14 points a game, pull down 6 rebounds a game, and shoot 55% from the field, with two more years left in his high school career.
Rounding out the players from the county named All-Conference was Manchester senior guard Jamie Combs. Combs had an excellent senior season, putting up 15 points a game for a Greyhound team that struggled early in the year, but showed steady improvement as the season went along.
Chosen as the SHAC Boys Coach of the Year was West Union’s Greg Himes. In his first year with the Dragons, Himes coined such terms as #Dragon Dynasty and #GoldRush, guiding a talented bunch of athletes to the SHAC title, their first since 1989. Though their season ended in a disappointing sectional tournament loss to Southeastern, Himes and his squad rejuvenated a fan base in the county seat.
The remainder of the All-SHAC Boys team includes: Tucker Ayres (Fairfield), Cody Gragg (Fairfield), Marcus Hamilton (Eastern Brown), Ryan Harney (Ripley), Eric McLaughlin (Lynchburg), Damin Pierson (Lynchburg), Jaki Royal (Ripley), Hunter Ruckel (Eastern Brown), Luke Wiederhold (Fayetteville), and Trever Yeager (Whiteoak).
All of these young men and coaches were honored at the SHAC Winter Sports Awards on March 10 at Fairfield High School.
2017-18 Boys Final Standings
West Union 10-3
Eastern Brown 8-5
North Adams 4-9