A huge hoops day for the West clan
FRISCO, Texas — This was a big, big, big day for the West family.
Yes, triple big.
It started with Jarrod West Sr. coaching Clarksburg Notre Dame in the opening game of the 2019 West Virginia high school boys basketball tournament in the Charleston Coliseum and Convention Center.
And who was West’s star player?
None other than ninth-grade son Jaidyn. And who was watching his father coach and little brother play via the technology of streaming on his computer?
None other than Marshall University starting sophomore guard Jarrod II from his hotel room here while waiting for the Thundering Herd’s opening round game in the Conference USA Tournament against Rice at 10 p.m. Wednesday in The Star at the Ford Center.
Due to deadlines, The Herald-Dispatch couldn’t publish results.
Yet, what a basketball trifecta.
It’s a shame it wasn’t a happier beginning to this family hoops affair. But, unfortunately, it wasn’t.
Despite Jaidyn scoring 20 points in the second half, Clarksburg Notre Dame was edged by Parkersburg Catholic, 58-56, in Class A action.
Much to Jarrod II’s chagrin.
“Ah, it was a tough one, man,” said an obviously disappointed West.
“I don’t think we played particularly well. It was a tough way to go out with us being the higher seed (No. 3) getting upset by the No. 6 seed. It’s just tough, man, it’s tough.”
Jaidyn really stepped up, however.
“He played a lot better in the second half,” said his older brother.
“He struggled in the first half to get going. I thought he played a lot better in the second half, though. He’s got to grow from this, he has to learn from this. Next year is going to be a lot different for him.”
Yet, that didn’t completely over-ride the impact of this special day.
“It still was a big day,” said Jarrod II. They played at 9:30 in the morning, we’re playing at 9 p.m. (CST) at night. So, it’s an all-day thing. I feel like we still have something to prove here. Obviously, we’re playing a lot better now (five consecutive wins), but getting the No. 6 seed I think we under-achieved in the regular season, so I think we’ve got a lot to prove.
“But I think we’ve got a great opportunity to win the conference.”
Then, there’s the personal motivation for West after being snubbed for C-USA’s All-Defensive team.
“I mean, obviously, I was upset that I didn’t get it,” said the 5-foot-11 sophomore.
“Last year, Jon (Elmore) felt like he got snubbed on Player of the Year, C.J. (Burks) felt he got snubbed on first-team (all-conference), Adjin (Penava) same thing.
“But I think this is just more motivation, more fuel to the fire for me and everybody else who got snubbed on accolades.”
That’s why West is so intense.
“I’m going to come out ready to play,” he said pointedly.
“It’s frustrating because defense is something you really have to take pride in the effort and energy and commitment to. Not getting All-Defense being second in the league in steals (2.2 per game) and in the top 20 in the country, that hurts. It’s frustrating because it really doesn’t make sense. But it happens. You can’t control it. So, at this point, we just have to come out and win.
“I think I got snubbed, but if we win the conference championship none of that matters.”
Spoken like a true West.
Chuck Landon is a sports columnist for The Herald-Dispatch. Contact him at email@example.com.