LINCOLNTON, N.C. (BVM) – As Silas Demary Jr. prepared for his senior season, he faced some big changes. His head coach at Liberty Heights High School in Charlotte, Mike Wright, left to head to the Combine Academy in nearby Lincolnton. So it was only a matter of time before Demary Jr. followed suit. Once he arrived on campus at the academy, it felt different but still like high school.
“It’s very different,” Demary Jr. said. “Liberty Heights, you know, we have one gym… Being at Combine, it’s like being back at regular school. Campus, everyone’s here. Other kids, international kids, I mean it’s just been a lot of fun.”
Before Demary Jr. set foot on campus at Liberty Heights, he played for Millbrook High School in Raleigh. There, he brought the school a 4A state title with a clutch steal of an inbounds pass and finished with a layup with four seconds left in overtime in a 67-65 win over Ardrey Kell. Demary Jr had also hit a free throw with just over 10 seconds left to tie the game at 65.
From there, Demary Jr. has only grown in his game and has become one of North Carolina’s top players in the Class of 2023. The switch first to Liberty Heights under Coach Wright paid off as more colleges got eyes on him, and he was quick to credit Wright.
“He’s had a lot of major kids in the past,” Demary Jr. said. “Kids that he put in college in the past, a lot. So you know, just asking him questions, picking his brain about certain things was really a big help.”
One of those schools that came on the radar was the University of Southern California. Demary Jr. was adamant that wherever he went, it had to be right for both him and his family. Evidently, Coach Andy Enfield and his staff showed Demary Jr that he would be right at home out on the West Coast.
“It was a lot of fun but it was also stressful as well,” Demary Jr. said of the recruiting process. “Trying to find that right spot, you know, just trying to make sure me and my family, we’re in the right spot… It was stressful, but it was also fun at the same time.”
Since officially committing to USC and signing on Early Signing Day, Demary Jr. has been in contact with the coaches and receiving feedback. It’s helped him prepare for his senior season with what he wants to work on and improve. He wants to improve his leadership skills at the point guard position while also working to create better opportunities for himself.
“I’m a leader, but sometimes I get caught up within myself without leading my team,” Demary Jr. said. “But just staying a consistent leader throughout the whole year… [They want to see me] just looking for my shot a little bit more. Sometimes I’ll be a little too unselfish.”
Demary Jr. is closing out his high school career as one of the best winners in North Carolina. The state title with Millbrook was the start, but he has won multiple tournaments with Team Curry and ended up just short of a title last season with Liberty Heights. Now with Combine Academy, he has his sights on winning as much as possible before graduation while learning from the players around him.
“I’m just learning from them,” Demary Jr. said. “Using them as prep for college. There’s definitely going to be a lot of guys in college that are as just as good as me… Mainly, I just want to win.”