Watch above: Andrew Henry ready for a new challenge in his final year with the Saskatchewan Huskies men’s basketball team. Jack Haskins reports on the “unsung hero.”
SASKATOON – When Saskatchewan Huskies all-star point guard Stephon Lamar decided to leave the men’s basketball team this summer to pursue a pro career, it left a gaping hole in the front court. Lamar led Saskatchewan in scoring (19.0 PPG), and in assists with 5.3 AST/G.
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His talent will be missed, but the Huskies have to move on, which is why head coach Barry Rawlyk has tapped fifth year Andrew Henry, a man Rawlyk believes to be an “unsung hero,” to help fill the void.
“It’s a different transition from what I’m used to playing the past couple years at the two spot,” said Henry before practice on Wednesday. “I’m getting used to it, I did it back in high school.”
Henry’s freshman year with the Huskies came off the heels of Saskatchewan’s miraculous CIS Championship victory in 2010. Andrew has played with several great players in his career, but one mentor stands out from the rest.
People remember Jamelle Barrett as a supreme talent on the court, being named Canada West MVP in 2010 and 2011, but Barrett’s ability to guide his younger teammates was something you couldn’t find in a box score.
“Jamelle Barrett really helped me out, especially through my first couple years,” said Henry. “He comes back from time to time to Saskatoon, so he always gives me pointers on what he’s doing out in the pros, and how to make my game better.”
And his game has gotten a lot better. Henry has shown steady progression through his five seasons with the Huskies. Henry isn’t exactly what you would call a “vocal leader,” but that’s alright with Rawlyk, who sees his fifth year point guard as someone who leads by example.
“Extremely hard worker,” said Rawlyk “He’s got a very strong work ethic and he always puts in his best effort.”
Henry and the rest of the Huskies will have their hands full this week, when the dogs host the seventh ranked Victoria Vikes, a team boasting a 4-0 record.