Athlete of the Week: Tucker County Forward Ian Nichols
Standing out is nothing new to Ian Nichols. The Tucker County senior forward has been the go-to guy for the Mountain Lions each of the last two years.
"I started out playing as a freshman. Coach kind of relied on me to play good defense and not turn the ball over, things like that. But throughout the years, I've been relied on even more to score. I've had to develop that part of my game and this year everything is finally coming together."
"He can both play inside and out. He shoots the ball real well. He rebounds real well. Offensive rebounding is really one of his strengths. He plays good defense. He's a team player."
Being a team player is what it's all about. But Nichols is more than simply a team player. He's a versatile player. He leads the Mountain Lions in scoring with close to 21 points per game. He's also a part of the 1,000-point club at Tucker County High School.
"I've always been kind of that three-guard. I've had to play down low some or play at guard. So it's kind of allowed me to do well at each position."
His coaches love his versatility, but you can probably suspect opposing coaches have problems putting a game plan together to stop him.
"I threw five or six people at him and he just got to a spot, elevated and made shots. But that's what good ball players do. He tried to carry his team, which I knew he would. It's his senior year, so he wants to go out with a bang. We definitely have to make some adjustments for when we go out to Parsons to play them."
But beginning next year, there's no need for basketball anymore. Nichols has elevated his game to another level.
"I've got accepted into the WVU School of Engineering. That's where I'm going to go this fall."