By Jeff Robison
INDIANAPOLIS — More than 60 of Indiana’s top high school senior boys’ basketball players showcased their skills Sunday at Marian University as participants in the 26th Hoosier Basketball Magazine Top 60 Senior Boys Workout.
Included in that elite group of players was Hendricks County’s lone representative, Ian Asher, who recently completed his high school career with the Danville Warriors.
Asher was selected to attend from amongst more than 1,500 senior boys’ varsity basketball players statewide.
“This was definitely a great experience,” Asher said. “This was the best of the best. Everyone is an athlete here, and it’s great competition. (All of the Top 60 players) want to be winners.”
Asher, along with teammate Avery Motes, was initially selected on the Hoosier Basketball Magazine Top 100 Seniors list. That list was whittled down to the final invitees selected for Sunday’s showcase event.
Hoosier Basketball Magazine publisher Garry Donna explained that it was no small achievement to earn a spot.
“We spend the whole season going to games, talking to coaches, college coaches, and media,” Donna said. “We start from a list of about 250 seniors out of 1,500. We pare that down to a Top 100, and then down to the 60. If you just do the math, to make the Top 60 out of 1500, you have to be a pretty good player.”
Asher adjusted well to playing in the Danville program again, after playing his first three high school seasons at Covenant Christian. He played for Danville in his youth.
“Coming back to Danville, I had grown up playing with those guys,” Asher said. “As soon as I came back, everything fell back in place. It was all back in synch.”
Asher helped Danville to an 18-6 record and sectional title this season.
“Winning sectional this year was a great accomplishment,” he said. “We beat Northwest, but going into it, there were even people in Danville that didn’t think we could. I didn’t have my best game, but (our team) stepped up when no one thought we could.”
On the year, Asher averaged 17 points, five assists, and four rebounds, numbers that could have been even better were it not for playing through a broken hand. Twice this year, he topped the 30-point barrier, including a 31-point performance at Bankers Life Fieldhouse against the Cascade Cadets and his career high 39 points against Beech Grove.
“I’ll always remember my game against Beech Grove,” Asher said. “I didn’t think it was possible for someone like me to do, but my teammates helped me then. And I’ll also remember both Avon games — even the one we lost — that came down to a last second shot. We played as hard as we could, and I thank my teammates for that.”
High school basketball may be over for Asher, but he will continue playing at Wheaton College in Illinois, a top Division III program.
“(Wheaton) is in one of the best conferences in all of Division III basketball,” Asher said. “It wasn’t necessarily as big of a level as I would have liked to play, but it’s not like I’m settling. My biggest thing is going into ministry, and Wheaton has a big program for that. I want to go live my dream (pursuing the ministry) and playing basketball.”