KEOSAUQUA — The No. 6-ranked Van Buren County High School girls basketball team have a definite advantage on most teams with a Division I commit in the post and an array of shooters around her.
That DI commit also has an advantage of her own — a gym at home to work on whatever part of her game she feels needs work.
Taryn Scheuermann most definitely has a 3-point line drawn in that gym. The 6-foot-3 Van Buren senior opened Tuesday’s first game of the 2019 season by canning a 3-pointer. She made another trey in the second half and finished with 22 points, 10 rebounds and seven blocked shots in a 74-10 win over Southeast Iowa Super Conference South Division rival WACO.
“She’s got a pretty good shot, doesn’t she,” VB coach Matt Zietler said. “That’s got to be depleting for a team to get ready for the big girl to come down in the lane and bang on you and she stops at the 3-point line and hits that.”
“That’s my new signature I guess,” Scheuermann said. “I have been shooting during volleyball season because I have my own gym. I spent a lot of time in there. I have a little advantage. I’ve been working on that, along with post moves and how a defense shifts and other things.”
Scheuermann also made a pair of 8-foot fadeaway jumpers.
“I don’t know where that came from, it just happens. After playing for so long, some things just happen by instinct.”
Ellah Kissel had four points and Morgan Graber three for the visitors.
“We just have to control what we can control,” WACO coach Calon Duvaul said. “Play good defense and if they score, you don’t hang your head. This is a really good team we played and there’s a lot of things we need to work on. Playing that good of a team in the first game of the year, that’s tough, but that’s life and that’s how you work on how you can move forward. We saw some positives, so we will be all right.”
Scheuermann wasn’t even the leading scorer for VB. Isabel Manning had 26 points. Looking at the effort from both teams throughout the game, it did not seem like the score was out of hand.
“I try to give it 110 percent always,” Manning said. “We have to maintain our focus, no matter the score.”
Zietler mentioned a third girl as the key to the Warriors this season. Madison Bartolomew had nine points, eight assists and six steals.
“Man she can do some things not a lot of girls can do,” Zietler said. “She’s got some talent. Madison’s the one that makes us go.”
It was obvious from the 17-0 firs-quarter lead and 44-3 halftime score that VB was motivated.
“We wanted to come out strong since it was our first game,” Manning said. “That’s what I use for motivation and we want to keep scoring points.”
She sure did that, sinking four threes, five twos, and 4 of 4 free throws. She also had seven rebounds and six steals.
“I have never been a strong 3-point shooter, so I have been working on it, definitely working on it,” Manning said.
It seemed the whole team has been working on it as five different VB girls canned at least one shot from downtown.
“We had a problem last year because nobody could shoot and teams would triple down on me,” Scheuermann said. “Now my teammates have been working hard and we have amazing shooters that can relieve some of that defense.”
All that work despite getting a late start on the basketball season.
Van Buren plays No. 2 North Linn Saturday at the U.S. Cellular Center in Cedar Rapids, where the Warriors just made their first state appearance in volleyball.
“I love facing tough match-ups and ranked teams because it’s either going to bring out the best in us or show us our weaknesses and either way we are going to improve,” Scheuermann said.
“We are trying to get ready for Saturday,” Manning said. “Coach said (North Linn will) go 90 miles an hour, so we are going to do a lot of conditioning and get ready for them.”
WACO plays at Wapello Tuesday.