The womensbasketball247 online site in highlighting the Women’s Korean Basketball League awards ceremony captured the wide body of work done by Bahamian center/forward Jonquel Jones for the Woori Bank Wibee team.
“In her first season overseas Jonquel Jones brought home plenty of hardware at today’s Korean League awards ceremony. After leading her team to a Korean League best record of 33-2, the best record in the history of the WKBL, Jones was named foreign MVP of the league, Defensive Player of the Year and selected to the “Best Five” Team in the league.”
The unforgettable season for Jones inked her in Korean Basketball History as one of the finest performers, ever. Her dominating play on both ends of the court has pushed the quality Woori Team to the brink of being regarded as the best team all-time.
Jones and Woori qualified for the play-off with 10 more games to play in the season and earned an automatic berth in the final series that is scheduled to begin on March 16, following an elimination round featuring the other two teams in post-season play.
Jones won the scoring title at 15.8 per game; the rebound crown (13.6) and was tops in blocks (2.7) per game. Among regular players, her 54 percent from the field was impressive as was her 42 percent from three-point territory. In all it was a truly amazing season.
Jones posted the following on Instagram:
“I think it is safe to say that my first year overseas has been a great one! Our team finished the regular season with a 33-2 record, putting us in the Korean Basketball League history books for the fewest losses in a season. I also walked away with the foreign MVP, Defensive Player of the Year and First Team awards. Saying that practice was tough would be a huge understatement, but it pays to persevere.”
My challenge to other athletes within the Bahamian sports fraternity is to take very seriously, Jones’ closing comment, “ it pays to persevere.” She has shown incredible mental resilience, patience and the capacity to learn from every single game.
With the Connecticut Sun of the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA) in her rookie season after she was drafted No. 6 last April, Jones adjusted smoothly and consistently. Although a high draft choice, she related to limited minutes given her on court by Coach Curt Miller at the start.
“I’m just focusing on fitting into his program and being ready when he calls my name” she explained during an earlier interview.
Her attitude endeared her to Coach Miller. He told me when I visited for the Sun home opener, that Jones had the potential to be a superstar in the WNBA. When Jones played, she contributed and paved the way for her sensational season in Asia.
All that is to hope for now is that the Woori Bank squad does not follow the route of the Golden State Warriors of the National Basketball Association (NBA). The Warriors finished last season with a 73-9 record, best in NBA history but lost in the final to the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Blue Minx and KB Stars begin their best-of-three elimination play-off series today for the right to meet Woori in the final.
Best wishes to Woori Bank in the play-off final!
(To respond to this column, kindly contact Fred Sturrup at email@example.com).
Published Friday, March 10, 2017