Hewett overcomes injuries for successful career at Shepherd

January 26, 2011|By TIM KOELBLE |
  • Boonsboro graduate Jerica Hewett hasn't allowed a large number of bumps, bruises and injuries stop her from her from having a good career with the Shepherd University women's basketball team.
Photo courtesy of Shepherd University

SHEPHERDSTOWN, W.Va. — It doesn’t seem that long ago that Jerica Hewett finished her high school basketball career at Boonsboro High School.

It’s been four years since Hewett was a Warrior, and she’s nearing the end of her career as a Ram. On Feb. 23, Shepherd University will celebrate Senior Night and Hewett will suit up in her No. 3 jersey for her final regular-season women’s basketball game.

“It’s the most crazy thing realizing that it’s almost over,” said Hewett.

It will also give Hewett a chance to step away from the game for a bit and get healthy, something she has to do annually given her array of bumps, bruises and — in some cases — breaks that result from her all-out style of play.

“Right now I’ve got a huge hip bruise, a broken metatarsil bone in the my left foot, both thumbs are bruised and I got a black eye recently,” said Hewett.

Those injuries have not kept Hewett from an outstanding senior season at Shepherd, where she leads the team in scoring (12.9 points per game) and steals and is second in assists and rebounds (6.2) as the Rams have posted a 10-6 record.

“Hustle, heart, competitiveness, the desire to win. Perhaps most importantly, she gives us all of those things every day with such consistency that most people forget how rare those qualities can be,” said Shepherd coach Melanie Ford. “She’s played through a laundry list of injuries and wills herself to continue no matter the situation. There is no quit in her.”

Beginning with her sophomore year at Boonsboro in 2004-05, Hewett helped guide Boonsboro to a 57-15 record in three seasons. In her senior season, Hewett averaged 15.3 points, 8.4 rebounds, 7.1 assists, 6.2 steals and 3.3 blocked shots and won her second consecutive Player of the Year honor from The Herald-Mail.

Hewett strolled into Shepherd, then coached by Jodie Runner, expecting plenty of playing time as a freshman, but that turned out not to be the case.

“I got little minutes as a freshman and was thinking ‘This isn’t how it was going to be,’” said Hewett. “But I told myself there were two senior point guards and to sit down, shut up and take on my role.”

When Ford took over for Runner before her sophomore season, Hewett was asked to pick up her scoring role.

“She does what a point guard should do,” said Ford. “Jerica is a playmaker and one of the most athletic players I have ever coached. She handles her responsibilities.”

As the season winds down, the process of building her future continues. Hewett has applied to graduate schools and is awaiting responses.

“I always have been in school for physical therapy and there is no change there,” said Hewett, a biology major with a minor in chemistry.

And don’t think for a moment the end of her college career means the end of basketball for Hewett.

“A teammate and I have some overseas offers for some tournaments, but the focus is on school right now,” said Hewett. “I know I’ll never stop playing, even with the guys over the summer at HCC.”

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