Medora captain leads on, off court

J.D. Fish began playing basketball in Seymour in fifth grade.

Then he moved to Medora in seventh grade and has been a Hornet ever since.

“There are four of us seniors. Being a senior is the best, and being a family is the best thing about playing ball here. We’ve come together as a family,” Fish said.

“Teamwork is very important,” he said. “If you’re not playing as a team, it’s not as good, not as fun. You normally don’t play as well if you don’t play as a team. If you come together as one, then you have more opportunities.”

Fish, who is a team captain, said communication on the court also is important.

“Communication is very important, especially on the defensive end,” he said. “We need to talk to each other, let each other know where somebody is at, if they’re cutting through or if they’re behind somebody and they don’t know they’re there.”

He played both junior varsity and varsity his freshman and sophomore years and has been a varsity starter the past two seasons. He was named Medora’s most improved player last season and also received the free throw, blocks and steals awards.

“I like to play just about anywhere, mainly mid-range,” he said. “I feel pretty comfortable with 3-pointers. I like shooting from the corner.”

Fish said he would rather play against a zone defense because it’s easier to get open shots.

“It’s more open, more spread out and you drive the gaps, and if they pinch in, then you have open shots from mid-range or the corner,” he said.

His high-point game this year was 10 against Evansville Christian. He scored 21 last year against both Columbus Christian and Christel House Academy and was in double figures 11 times last winter.

On offense, he said it takes teamwork to be successful on offense.

“I like coming together as a team to make a good play,” he said.

Defensively, he said he likes rebounding and moving in transition.

“We need to work on that more on transition, get out and go,” Fish said. “When a guard or forward gets out and goes, it’s normally a good transition for us.”

Fish said the Hornets need to lower their defensive average in the second half of the season.

“We like to stay half-court, but at certain times, we like to come up full court or three-quarters court,” he said. “I’m normally back on our press to protect the basket. I like playing zone because then we’re all together and accountable as one, not just one person.”

Taking practices seriously will be important, too.

“We always hear ‘You practice how you play,’” Fish said. “It is very true. If you practice poorly, you normally play pretty poorly. We need to come out with more effort, play as a team. If we don’t have the effort, we’re not there. The mental part is very important. If you don’t believe in yourself or your teammates, then there’s hardly anything left.”

Fish said he likes attending a small school and having the support of the community.

“The smaller school is good,” he said. “You get a lot of one-on-one help. If you need help, you can get it pretty easy. Everybody normally helps each other out if someone needs it. A smaller community means you are able to help each other more. We have a good staff here.”

After he graduates, he said he will remember the friends he has made and playing as a team.

“Playing on the team is one of my highlights because I started out in seventh grade here and I’ve played with some of these boys since seventh grade,” he said. “I’m looking forward to finishing out my senior year strong.”

[sc:pullout-title pullout-title=”Fish file” ][sc:pullout-text-begin]

Name: J.D. Fish

High school: Medora

Parents: Steve and Amy Blair, Judd and Tracey Fish

Siblings: Bryant, the late Austin Fish

Sport: Basketball, four years

Athletic highlights: Receiving the free throw, blocks, steals and most improved awards

Organizations: Beta Club, FFA, class treasurer

Plans after high school: Workforce

Favorite food: Steak

Favorite TV show: "Two and a Half Men"

Favorite singer: Ryan Upchurch

Favorite movie: "Billy Madison"

Favorite team: Purdue University