By Chris McCarthy
Will Jones soon will depart Rainbow City for the junior college experience.
On Tuesday (Apr. 18) the Westbrook Christian senior signed a basketball scholarship with Wallace State-Hanceville.
In his two years as a starting guard, Jones helped the Warriors post a 56-11 record with a pair of area titles and consecutive berths in the Class 2A Northeast Regional Tournament semifinals. Jones was named to the Class 2A All-State honorable mention team and the All-Messenger first team after averaging 13.6 points, 5.0 assists, 4.0 rebounds and 2.5 assists a game. He also shot 38 from three-point range and 77 percent from the foul line.
Jones said that playing college basketball was a dream come true.
“I’ve been waiting for this since I was in the fourth grade and watching my uncle (Clay Wilson) play ball. It feels great to actually get [the signing] out of the way, and I’m ready to go up [to Hanceville] and get to work. To me, Coach Pruitt is one of the best to ever coach this game, and I thank God for putting him into my life. His teachings will carry on to the next level for me.”
Westbrook boys basketball coach Donny Pruitt noted that Jones’ love of playing basketball carried over to his teammates.
“Will’s the type of kid that would be here every morning shooting in the gym and be the last one to leave practice in the afternoon. He really came a long way for us and became a very good point guard. I know how much Will wanted to have the opportunity to play at the next level, and I’m grateful to know that he’s going to a very good program with great facilities. Hopefully it will be a really good experience for him.”
Jones joins a Lion squad that last season went 13-17 overall and 5-7 in Alabama Community College Conference action. Wallace-Hanceville mens basketball coach John Meeks said that Jones would redshirt his freshman season.
“The big thing is that Will’s the type of kid that’s going to be able to handle the pressures of competing at the junior college level and grow as a person and as a player in a new environment,” said Meeks. “I think he already does a lot of things well, and he plays with a lot of passion and energy. Will’s already a good leader, and I think he’ll mature further into that role and bring a solid work ethic to practice and then to the games when he’s eligible.”