The Drill: When Windom's Erickson has the basketball, look out
Henry Erickson, a basketball player with the Windom Area Eagles, can both score and dish it out with the best of 'em.
WINDOM -- It is often said that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. And in the case of Windom Area High School junior guard Henry Erickson, the saying seems true.
Henry’s dad, Juhl Erickson, was once an outstanding playmaking basketball guard at Westbrook-Walnut Grove High School. Henry is an outstanding playmaking guard for the Eagles. They certainly do seem, though many seasons separate the 1991 W-WG graduate from the 2021-22 version, like two peas from a pod -- or apples of the same limited-issue variety.
Except that Juhl defers to his son when asked to make a comparison.
“Any father, I think, is always proud to say our kid’s doing better than we do. He’s a much better scorer, a much better shooter, and I think kids today are just better shooters. I maybe took one 3-point shot a game, possibly two once in a while. And the 3-point shot has become such a big part of the game that kids shoot more of those than they do 2-pointers a lot of times. I guess I’m proud to say he’s bettering the old man, but in the driveway there’s still a lot of pride at stake,” Juhl said, smiling.
In 1991, Juhl’s W-WG team made the state tournament in the schools’ first year of pairing. The “old man” led the Red Rock Conference in assists, with 11 per game.
Until this year, Henry’s main job on the team seemed to be to handle the ball, pass it, and get a bunch of assists. This year, however, he is expected to score more points, though he still likes to pass.
“I like to get assists more. I just like distributing the ball. Me, seeing the court, I think that’s my best attribute. And I like it when my teammates score, also,” he said.
Henry should probably keep shooting, however. He scored a school-record 43 points last week in a win over Worthington. That’s confirmation, for ya.
Also a football and baseball player, Henry says he and his Eagle teammates want to make a good run in the section tournament this year, and maybe even make it to state. But he knows that will require continued hard work in practice, and in games getting more stops on defense.
This week’s Globe Drill subject was interviewed recently by The Globe sports department, and footage of him in practice was also taken. You can see the video online at www.dglobe.com . Here’s a sample of the interview:
QUESTION: What can you say about your ball-handling and shooting abilities?
ANSWER: “I got my ability to dribble and pass, I’ve been working hard in the gym each summer. I also come in here and shoot on the gun. We have two guns here for practice. I’ve watched YouTube videos on how to dribble and shoot. That’s probably where I got my skills from.”
QUESTION: How is it that you see the whole court so well when you’re playing basketball?
ANSWER: “When I see the court, it just seems open to me. I don’t really know how to explain it, but I think I got it from my dad. I just know where somebody’s going to be before that even happens.”
QUESTION: Have you got a special story to tell about something that happened to you in sports that you’ll never forget? Something that you’d say was a special moment?
ANSWER: “One thing I’ll always remember, when I was in fifth- or sixth-grade, we played in a basketball tournament. And we played a Mankato team, and they had a few 6-footers and we thought we were gonna get smoked. But then we ended up winning by, like, two or three in overtime. And it was a really fun game. After the game I felt so excited that we won, and I think I had a pass to my teammate and he scored with, like, 10 seconds left in the game to take the lead. And that was really fun.”