Hinckley-Big Rock sophomore Anna Herrmann not done rewriting Royals’ record books

Hinckley-Big Rock’s Anna Herrmann shoots a three pointer over a Harvest Christian defender Monday, Jan. 8, 2023, during their game at Hinckley-Big Rock High School.

HINCKLEY – In the week since Anna Herrmann set the Hinckley-Big Rock career record for 3-pointers, the 3s have kept on coming.

Barely halfway through her sophomore season, Herrmann said she wants to make her record untouchable.

“I’m really hoping to push the record,” Herrmann said. “I really want to make it so it’s unreachable.”

She hit her 145th career 3-pointer against Hiawatha on Jan. 4, and currently sits at 155, boosted by draining five Monday against Harvest Christian.

Against the Lions, Herrmann hit her 77th 3-pointer of the season, breaking her own school season record.

“Honestly, it was unreal,” Herrmann said. “I was not expecting to break it this year. I mean, I was looking into it. Over the summer [a reporter asked about the record] and I’m like, ‘I’m not really looking into it.’ But as I got closer to the season, I was like, ‘Oh, I could totally do this.’ So when I finally broke it, I was like, ‘Here we go.’ ”

And it’s not like the program is bereft of history. The Royals won state titles in 2009 and 2010. According to IHSA records, they had only one losing season between 1977-78 and 2013-14.

H-BR coach Doug Brewington, in his ninth year coaching the Royals, said Herrmann’s success stems from her belief in her abilities.

“The confidence level coming in is rare,” Brewington said. “I told her from Day 1, ‘Let it rip. Put it up.’ Most freshmen don’t believe that. They don’t listen to coach when it comes to getting up those shots. For her to come in with her confidence level that high was a testament to her hard work. It’s tough to be that confident if you’re not working that hard.”

The Royals won a regional every year from 2009 to 2014, then after a down cycle won regionals in 2022 and 2023. Herrmann said the team is hoping to make it three straight regional crowns later this season when they head to either Earlville or Marquette.

“Our past we’ve been winning regionals left and right,” Herrmann said. “I’m really hoping to get another regional too.”

Brewington said Herrmann has a shooter’s mentality, and it shows in games like against HCA. After making three of her first six 3-pointers, she missed her next five to end the first half.

But she didn’t slow down - outside the fact the Royals were up by more than 30 for the entire second half - and made two of her last three attempts, including the one that broke the school record.

“We tell her all the time, ‘shoot to get hot, shoot to stay hot,’ ” Brewington said. “With that mindset, even if they’re not going in, defenses have to respect it. And you’re building your own confidence. So she’s turning into an elite player.”

Herrmann said she’s been impressed with how the Royals have played so far this year. There are only two seniors on the roster, and the starting lineup is all non-seniors. In addition to three juniors and Herrmann, a freshman starts for the Royals, as well.

But Herrmann said the team is still very experienced, and it shows in the way the Royals play.

“We have a really young team, but we’ve been working together, passing the ball around, moving,” Herrmann said. “I think we have a really good chemistry, and I’m excited for the years to go on, especially next year when we get older and more experienced.”

Herrmann is one of two team captains, and Brewington said she shows why with her leadership abilities, although she’s still only a sophomore.

“She’s cool, calm and collected,” Brewington said. “She has sophomore moments, but she’s a positive influence. I’m fiery, I’m pushing the girls, I’m getting on to them, and she’s the calming presence. That’s equally as valuable as anything she adds from the 3-point line.”

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