DeHart eager to become Indian Creek’s go-to player

Jared DeHart has been waiting for his chance to be The Guy. Now, his time has arrived.

DeHart was one of three Indian Creek players to put up at least 15 points a game last season, but the other two — Tim Abel and Bryce Hogue — have since graduated, meaning that DeHart will likely be the Braves’ go-to scorer this winter.

He’s not running away from that responsibility at all.

“I’ve been looking forward to it for a while now,” DeHart said. “It’s my senior year; I’m looking forward to just going out there and trying to go out with a bang.”

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Offensively, DeHart has shown the ability to get buckets in a variety of ways. He made 43 3-point shots last season, and he also proved adept at getting to the rim and either finishing or getting to the line, where he was 73 of 93 (78 percent).

Third on the Braves in points per game last season with 15.2, DeHart also led the team in assists (78) and steals (39) and was second to Hogue in rebounds, averaging six per night.

Those numbers are likely to go up with DeHart expected to carry a larger share of the team’s workload.

“I look for not only all of us to have a good year, but he should have a great year personally,” Indian Creek coach Drew Glentzer said.

If DeHart has any specific individual goals for himself, he’s not sharing them. Rather, he’s trying to keep his aims simplistic as his senior season begins.

“Just go out there and play hard, do what I have to do to give us the best chance to win within the system that I’m playing with,” DeHart said. “That’s pretty much it; just go out there and play hard.”

First-year coach Glentzer, who is returning to his alma mater after seven seasons at Edinburgh, inherits a few other players with varsity experience, most notably juniors Trevor Ankney, Isaiah Lacey and Zach Pugh. That trio will likely play a big part in any success the Braves have this year — but there’s no question who Glentzer is planning to build this year’s team around.

“We’ve got a small senior class, but obviously having Jared, one of the best players in the county, it’s a good place to start,” the coach said.

2017-18 schedule

Date;Opponent;Time

Nov. 25;Edinburgh;7:30 p.m.

Dec. 1;Owen Valley;7:30 p.m.

Dec. 8;Cloverdale;7:30 p.m.

Dec. 9;Oldenburg Academy;6 p.m.

Dec. 15;Edgewood;7:30 p.m.

Dec. 19;Martinsville;7:30 p.m.

Dec. 22;at Greenfield-Central;7:30 p.m.

Dec. 29-30;at Monrovia tournament

Jan. 6;at Brown County

Jan. 9-13;Johnson County tournament

Jan. 20;at Cascade

Jan. 26;WIC playoffs;6 p.m.

Jan. 29; at Greensburg;7:30 p.m.

Feb. 1;at Whiteland;7:30 p.m.

Feb. 9;Indianapolis Herron;7:30 p.m.

Feb. 13;at Madison;6 p.m.

Feb. 16;Central Christian;6 p.m.

Feb. 17;at Hauser;7:30 p.m.

Feb. 20;Greenwood;6 p.m.

Scouting the Braves

Head coach: Drew Glentzer

Last season: 15-9, lost to Beech Grove in sectional opener

Key returnees: Jared DeHart, Sr., G; Trevor Ankney, Jr., F; Isaiah Lacey, Jr., F; Austin Meyer, Jr., C; Zach Pugh, Jr., G

Fresh faces: Kyle Lime, Sr., C; Ryan McGillem, Sr., C; Filippo Bruzzese, Jr., F; Jace Russell, Jr., F; Xavier Ferris, So., G/F

Outlook: The Braves not only have to adjust to a new coach and a new system, but also need to fill the void left by the graduation of double-digit scorers Tim Abel and Bryce Hogue. Helping the cause is the return of DeHart, who should be among the top offensive players in the area. Pugh, Ankney and Lacey all played big minutes a year ago and should take on bigger roles. If Indian Creek can improve defensively and find a few consistent scoring options to complement DeHart, it could again prove to be a dangerous team.

Coachspeak: “It wasn’t just like coming in and, ‘Okay, what do we have?’ before we can figure out what we’re going to run; I had a good idea of what kids were here and who they play and things like that.” — Glentzer

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Ryan O'Leary is sports editor for the Daily Journal. He can be reached at roleary@dailyjournal.net or 317-736-2715.