Josh Verlin (@jmverlin)
To get to Penn Charter, Colin Schumm has nearly an hour-long commute from his home in Delaware County into the East Falls section of Philadelphia, then a similar drive every afternoon or evening.
It’s a daily commute that’s representative of the work Schumm’s willing to put in to achieve his goals, why he’s at the more than 300-year-old institution instead of staying home at Interboro High School.
“It’s all worth it,” he said. “I love doing it.”
Colin Schumm (above) is a three-sport athlete for Penn Charter, playing football, basketball and baseball. (Photo: Josh Verlin/CoBL)
A 6-foot-4, 215-pound junior, Schumm came to Penn Charter four years back to take advantage of the school’s combination of academics and athletics. There was an adjustment period; he repeated his freshman year to move into the Class of 2023, getting acclimated to a more rigorous coursework and higher-intensity teams.
Two years later, he’s a three-sport athlete: the starting quarterback on the school’s football team, he also plays baseball in the spring. But the winter — that’s basketball season, where he’s part of a deep junior class for John Owens’ Quakers.
“I’ve been playing basketball my whole life,” he said. “It’s never really come naturally to me, but I love playing it, it’s awesome.”
Schumm’s work ethic was on full display Friday night, as his double-double off the bench helped Penn Charter stay unbeaten on the young season with a 66-58 win over Friends’ Central.
It was the home opener at Penn Charter’s brand-new Graham Athletics & Wellness Center, a modern, massive, multi-purpose building which features two full-size courts. A solid crowd of several hundred were in attendance to welcome the Quakers onto their new court for the first time, including a rowdy group of 100-or-so students.
After playing only four games last season in front of an empty house, it was plenty to give Penn Charter some extra juice.
“We were excited, coming in here, getting everybody in here, trying to get a win,” Schumm said. “Because of COVID, everybody kind of got down, but we came in, and we lit a firework off in here.”
Schumm has been a varsity contributor for Penn Charter since his first year at the school, scoring a total of 86 points his first freshman year and 106 his second, according to Philly hoops historian Ted Silary. If his play Friday night was any indication, he’ll shatter that in a couple weeks: he finished with 14 points, 12 rebounds (two offensive) and three steals.
Schumm had 14 points, 12 rebounds and three steals in Penn Charter's 66-58 win. (Photo: Josh Verlin/CoBL)
Schumm immediately provided the Quakers with good effort on the glass when he entered midway through the first quarter, but his offensive game took a little longer to come around Friday evening. He had a great hustle play in the second quarter, tipping back a missed foul shot for his first bucket; by the end of the third quarter, with Penn Charter holding a 51-36 lead, he was up to eight points.
Even when his jumper wasn’t falling at first, Schumm didn’t stop playing aggressive, attacking the FCS defense off the bounce and sticking his nose in after just about every rebound, as well as flying around the court defensively to come up with steals and deflections.
“I like bringing the energy, I like bringing the attitude,” he said. “I love banging under the boards, getting some rebounds to get my teammates good shots.”
In the fourth quarter, Schumm’s only 3-pointer gave the Quakers a 13-point edge with 5:30 to play; after Friends’ Central closed a 15-point gap to six, his jumper from the left wing made it a nine-point gap with 1:08 to play and effectively sealed the win.
“That shot felt great to me,” he said. “It felt good, I knew it was coming and I was just ready for it.”
Penn Charter's Mark Butler drives past Friends' Central's Collin Bowman.
(Photo: Josh Verlin/CoBL)
Scoring isn’t typically something the Quakers have to count on Schumm to provide. Talented junior lead guard Mark Butler (above), who had 15 points to pace the Quakers, is getting looks from college coaches, as is their classmate, Trey Shinholster, who had an off shooting night but still finished with 12 points in the win. Keith Gee, another junior guard, only had six points Friday but certainly has high-scoring potential, as does Trey’s younger brother, freshman Kai Shinholster, who also starts and plays big minutes.
Schumm, as sixth man, fills in what’s needed along the way.
“He’s just coming down and being a role piece for us and doing whatever we need him to do,” Owens said. “If we need him to score, obviously he did that — rebound, play defense, whatever it is that we need, he’s just coming in here and doing that.”
Another junior in the starting lineup, 6-3 forward Isaiah Grimes, had a double-double of his own with 14 points and 15 rebounds.
“I think just because we’re smaller, people confuse that with us not being ready to bang,” Owens said. “We’re always in more foul trouble than some of these teams because we like to go in head first.”
The Inter-Ac is wide-open this year, after the much-interrupted COVID season and a sizable amount of additions and departures within the six-team private school league. The Quakers will have another month to get ready for the 10-game round-robin, playing upcoming games against the Hill School (Dec. 4) and powerhouse Westtown (Dec. 8), with a couple Catholic League opponents in Cardinal O’Hara (Dec. 19) and La Salle (Dec. 21) later this month. The Inter-Ac opener is Jan. 11 at home against The Haverford School.
“I think with our team, rebounding is going to be key for us, to go against some of those teams in the Inter-Ac,” Owens said, “and to continue to trust and play together offensively. I think if we can do that, we’ll be fine.”
Penn Charter: 13 | 16 | 22 | 15 || 66
Friends’ Central: 9 | 12 | 15 | 22 || 58
Penn Charter: 21-59 FG (2-24 3PT), 22-32 FT
Friends’ Central: 20-66 FG (6-24 3PT), 12-20 FT
Penn Charter: Butler 15, Grimes 14, Schumm 14, T. Shinholster 12, Gee 6, K. Shinholster 3, Cotton 2
Friends’ Central: Bowman 18, Green 15, Belcher 9, Clark 8, I. Moore 3, G. Moore 3, Foley 2