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ALBRIGHT: Parkersburg High basketball player Bre Wilson’s star set to keep rising

Will the Parkersburg High girls’ basketball complete its state championship three-peat?

Check back in about six months.

One certainty for the likely preseason top-ranked Big Reds?

Bre Wilson returns to the court off playing one of the hottest stretches of basketball around the state.

Opportunity brings the possibility for great things.

When those chances arise?

Well, your guess is as good as mine.

Maybe in the sporting world one could emerge in a state title game?

Sounds like a perfect spot, right?

And as each of Wilson’s seven 3-point shots kept falling her confidence kept rising, and as Wilson’s confidence kept rising the orange rock kept sinking through the net.

All her buckets oozed importance.

University head coach David Price’s game plan to eliminate Shay-Lee Kirby and Madi Mace’s offensive contributions in the Class AAA championship final further cratered with each deep connection.

The Big Reds’ fans cheered and the bench cheered louder. Downtown shots from Parkersburg, Ravenswood and Wayne in the West Virginia state logo at center court of the Charleston Coliseum and Convention Center racked up her 3-ball count.

Father Phil observed the happening from the PHS bench and flashed back to an afternoon when Bre was 5 years old. He arrived home from work to find his daughter crying on the steps leading to the house. She had just lost a bike race.

Bre worked hard to learn to ride the bike. She hated to see all the work put in not pay off with a win.

Something clearly translated between childhood and then.

What could Price do?

His education on the Big Reds had paid off in some ways. Not many teams played the Big Reds closer than his Hawks.

Just to be safe, Wilson tacked on another lesson.

One Huntington head coach Lonnie Lucas and his group learned when Wilson canned eight of 11 3s in her first game back last season.

One Pete Fraley learned as Wilson took home team MVP honors as PHS survived his Boyd County group’s comeback attempt.

Wilson will do whatever is best for her team.

Her basketball IQ leaves her a natural talent on offense and defense. She could do what was best for her team.

This was the reason she endured rehab, and with a grimace on her face hunted down rebounds during shooting drills at 4:30 a.m. in the gym on the way back from an ACL tear over the previous summer and before school – to be there for her team.

Well, one of them.

Impressing colleges at AAU exposure tournaments?

Those contests turned out to be ideal pressure cookers, as well.

Basketball is a must for Wilson at the next level.

Her prospects were there before the injury. The ligament tear set her back.

The good news out of summer ball? “It went about as well as it could have gone,” according to Wilson.

No, I can’t provide numbers and statistics. I already discussed in an earlier column numbers aren’t the purpose of AAU.

Scott Johnson though can back me up.

“She makes the college-type plays,” said her W.Va. Thunder coach. “She makes the right reads and the ball goes to the right place. She may think she has a shot, but she makes the right play to move the ball.

“I think that now you are going to see a drastic improvement as last summer she didn’t get to play the whole summer,” continued Johnson. “She had a great offseason where last year she didn’t have one. She has improved her ball handling, basketball IQ and leadership by playing with and against Division I kids. She fits right in on the court with four other D-I kids.”

Those Thunder teammates won’t be the ones she suits up with in college. At least it is unlikely.

Her open recruitment adds another unique advantage to her final year.

Where some seniors stand fearful of playing hard for fear of an injury or threat of losing a scholarship, Wilson’s just going out to play.

“I need to add stuff to my game and I have been working out with Jordan Thornhill at Instep coaching,” she said. “I am working on driving to the basket more and creating my own shot.”

Chances to show off her game on a national scale are present, too. Scheduled tournaments in Myrtle Beach and Tennessee feature competition against a number of top schools in the country.

Throw in the fact she is 190 points away from 1,000 and has yet to make an all-state first team for more motivation.

“I am just ready to start this season especially because it is my last one in high school,” said Wilson.

Contact Joe Albright at jalbright@newsandsentinel.com.

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