Athlete of the Week: Jones makes smooth move to CA

cambhoops-jonesdribbleUpon transferring from Mullins to Christian Academy of Myrtle Beach last fall, Bernard Jones was a new freshman who could count the number of classmates he knew on one hand.

One year later, and after helping the Saints capture the SCICSA Class A state basketball championship, Jones is a big man on campus in more ways than one. His on-court ability and off-court charm have made him a hit with his teammates and classmates.

“It’s a lot different than Mullins (Middle), but it’s a small school and everybody is real friendly,” said Jones, who was voted the Mammy’s Kitchen Athlete of the Week. “I made a lot of good friends in basketball and that definitely helped me make the transition.”

His move was even smoother on the hardwood, where Jones played point guard on a veteran team that featured SCISA Player of the Year Kendall Henry. His role has expanded without Henry in the lineup, but he is surrounded by a solid group of players that he makes even better.

“When we need Bernard to score, he can take over a game,” said CA coach Darren Gore. “But when his teammates are scoring, he’s a great facilitator. If we need him to distribute, he’ll do that. If we need him to defend, he’ll do that and shut them down. He’s a great teammate.”

Jones dishes out praise to his teammates like he does assists. He leads the team in scoring (14.5 points per game) and assists (3.0), a rare feat on any team, but takes pride in seeing the players around him do well and, most of all, win.

“We’ve basically got the same team but without Kendall,” Jones said. “Last year I kind of sat back because I was the new guy but this season I’ve had to I had to pick it up a little bit this season. All of us have. We’ve got a deep team, we play together and we want to go back and win it again.”

Jones has three more seasons to lead the Saints to a state title but he’s already receiving interest from colleges. Gore will be the first to tell recruiters what a special kid and player Jones is.

“He’s obviously a great player, but he’s also a great kid,” Gore said. “I don’t have any problems with him, but that’s because his mother has done such a good job with him. (CA) was a big jump academically but he’s making straight As. He’s a nice young man and a real asset to our team.”

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