The only number Zionsville Community High School girls basketball player Mallory Heerdt is concerned about is the victory total.
“Mallory does not worry about her stat line. She does all the little things that have made us successful this season,” Eagles coach Andy Maguire said of the senior forward. “She is the heart and soul of our team on the floor and in the locker room. We had a leadership academy this fall, and it was unanimous that Mallory was the leader of the team. Mallory is our most vocal leader, and she always leads by example.
“She knows everyone’s responsibilities on every play, and she does a great job of coaching her teammates up during the game. Mallory also is very helpful at practice with our JV and freshman kids when we are doing skill work, especially post work.”
As of Jan. 9, the 6-foot Heerdt, a three-year starter, was averaging 5.1 points and 3.9 rebounds for the Class 4A No. 2 Eagles (17-0).
“The success that we’ve had so far is the result of all the hard work that my team has put in behind the scenes, and so it is really special and means a lot to us to see it pay off,” Heerdt said.
Heerdt said she has improved the most in her leadership ability.
“My job is to make sure the team is running seamlessly on the court, whether that be on defense or offense, and this season I have taken that role very seriously,” Heerdt said. “My role has never been to get the most stats or score the most but to be the voice for my teammates
“I am also very blessed that my teammates have so much talent that it allows me to fill this role.”
Senior Laila Hull, who will play for the University of North Carolina next season, averages team-highs of 22.2 points and 8.6 rebounds.
“Laila is my best friend, on the court and off,” Heerdt said. “When she moved here in sixth grade, we have been inseparable playing basketball with each other every single year since. I’ve seen her journey and her growth, and I am so, so proud of everything she has accomplished, and it makes me very happy to see her reach all her goals and dreams.”
Heerdt’s father, Brian Heerdt, is the ZCHS junior varsity boys basketball coach, so she has been around the game her entire life.
Although Maguire said Heerdt could play college basketball at the NCAA Division III or NAIA level, she doesn’t plan to pursue playing opportunities.
“Although I have a great passion and love for the sport, I know it is time to move on and start a new chapter of my life,” Heerdt said. “I plan on going to nursing school in college, and that being my main focus instead of basketball. However, I still plan on being involved some way or another, whether that is through intramurals or even helping coach my little sister (Edie, age 9).”
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