MARYSVILLE — As basketball season comes to an end, Marysville-Pilchuck captain Nick Henry is looking back on the years he spent playing for the Tomahawks.
Henry has been playing competitive basketball since sixth grade, first starting out in recreational leagues and then AU teams. He played for the Tomahawks C team his freshman year and spent his sophomore year at the junior varsity level. He moved up to varsity for his last two seasons.
“At first I’d say I struggled with the pressure of being a point guard,” said Henry, of what obstacles he’s overcome in his basketball career. “That and shooting, I think shooting is a struggle for everyone at first.”
But Henry never let the pressure of the game stop him from doing his best, and in the last few years, leading other players to do their best as well.
“I think I’ve grown the most in my attitude,” he said. “Even when things are going wrong I can grow and be positive.”
M-P’s head basketball coach Bary Gould thinks of Henry as a leader for the team.
“Nick is very well liked in our program amongst all of the players,” said Gould. “He leads by example with how hard he works and by getting it done in the classroom and being a leader on campus as well. If there was ever a player asking how to act in a certain area, we could point to Nick as to how it should be done properly.”
Gould is also proud of how skilled Henry has been as a varsity starter and how he’s improved throughout his basketball career.
“Nick is a defensive stopper who has had to defend the best guards in our league,” said Gould. “He is a two year starter that improved all four years in our program. Nick brought the leadership that we needed during practice and games. He is the type of player that does all the little things that make a team go but do not necessarily show up in the paper or in the box scores. He is a consistent ball-handler that gets us into our offenses. He is also, as I said before, our best ‘on-ball’ defender. Nick was constantly forced to guard guys that were quicker and more athletic than he is, but he was somehow able to keep them in front of him. We talk about how defense is desire and he definitely has a deep desire to play at a high level. Nick is our ASB President so he brought a lot of leadership to the table for our program.”
In addition to being student body president, Henry is also an active member of the National Honor Society and participates in a lot of community service projects.
“Last year we did a fundraiser for the Special Olympics and we are putting together a Bowl-a-thon this year,” he said. “All the money we raise goes to the Cocoon House for homeless kids or kids with a tough life.”
Overall, Henry is a player and a student with passion for everything he does.
“Nick is a pleasure to coach because he pours his heart and soul into the game,” said Gould. “Nick is always at practice with a great work ethic. He is someone I have depended upon heavily the last two years and he has really come through for us. He leaves a legacy of how things should be done with excellence.”
Henry is looking forward to the baseball season starting this spring, when he’ll play for the Tomahawks as well. He is also looking forward to attending a four-year university in the fall but hasn’t settled on which one.
“I’m going to a four-year but I’m still deciding between Arizona State University and [Washington State University],” said Henry. “I’m hoping to study mechanical engineering.”
Henry is thankful for the coaching staff he’s had throughout the years, especially at the varsity level.
“I enjoyed the season whether we won or lost,” he said. “I had fun with my team and my coaches. Our varsity coach, Bary Gould, is a great coach,” he said. “We have an assistant coach, Todd Bevan, who is so inspirational. He is always positive.”
His coaches are proud of his sportsmanship and believe it will translate well into his life after high school.
“I wish Nick nothing but the best,” said Gould. “He has learned a lot through the adversity we have fought through together the last few years. He will be stronger for it and will be successful in anything he puts his mind to do. My wish for him is that he continues to find the joy in the process of life. The joy that comes from relationships, friendships, and struggling through things to be better on the other side. My wish for Nick is that he seeks to find out that the definition of success is in knowing he gave his best in everything. I want to thank Nick for all of the hard work and dedication he put in to becoming our leader and I want him to know he is a winner in my book.”