July 19, 2013

Christian Heritage guard Patterson on way to Berry

Will Patterson hadn’t seen much time on the basketball court through his junior season at Christian Heritage School. But when Anthony Moseley was hired as the Lions’ head coach last summer, he saw something in Patterson.

Berry College sees something, too.

Patterson has accepted an offer to play for the Vikings. Because Berry, which is in Rome, is a NCAA Division III school, it cannot give athletic scholarships. However, Patterson will receive a partial academic scholarship to the Rome school.

The 6-foot-3-inch, 170-pound guard only wanted a chance to prove himself after playing a handful of varsity minutes through his first three high school seasons.

“I think he said he played in two games (as a junior),” said Moseley, whose belief was as big a reason as any Patterson became one of the biggest surprises in local boys basketball this past season.

Said Patterson, “I met him last year at the end of the season up at the Bradley Wellness Center. When he became coach, he knew how good I was from watching me up there. He had confidence in me.”

As a team, Christian Heritage struggled in its first season against Georgia High School Association competition after spending the previous five years in the Georgia Independent School Association. The Lions finished 8-14 overall and missed the GHSA’s Class A private school state playoffs.

But Patterson was a bright spot, leading the Lions in scoring as he averaged 17 points per game. He also averaged five rebounds and three assists on his way to making the All-Region 6-A team and earning honorable mention on The Daily Citizen’s All-Area Boys Basketball Team.

“I got a lot better, but I wasn’t bad. I was just overlooked,” Patterson said. “It motivated me to get better.”

Moseley, who was the head coach for Christian Heritage’s middle school team during the 2011-2012 season, said he often saw Patterson shooting at Bradley. That work ethic continued during his senior year.

“The first day of practice, the first day we did anything, Will was there,” Moseley said. “You hear it all the time, but if I had 20 like him — he’s the hardest-working kid I’ve ever seen. He’s got the purest shot around, but he still works on his shot every single day. He works on basketball every single day.”

When it came to finding a college, Patterson said location played a factor — he described his choice as “not too close and not too far from home” — and he also touted Berry’s academics. On the basketball court, Patterson’s work ethic will now be applied to helping the Vikings turn their program around.

Last season, Berry finished 5-21 overall and 2-12 in Southern Athletic Association play. Vikings head coach Jeff Harlow resigned in late January and Derek Taylor finished the season as interim head coach. Jeff Rogers, who spent the past four seasons as head coach at Thomas More College in Crestview Hills, Ky., took over at Berry in April.

Patterson believes changes at Berry could work in his favor.

“We’ll have a lot of new players coming in,” he said, “so I’ll get the opportunity to earn a spot.”

A roster for the upcoming season was not on the team’s website, but last year’s roster of 15 players included just two seniors.

For Patterson, making the transition to college basketball will require a little more weight and better defensive skills, Moseley said. But however hard Patterson has to work to earn playing time, Moseley is confident he’ll do so.

“I’ll use him as an example for many years to come,” Moseley said. “There have been many kids who had to sit on the bench and kept sitting on the bench and just gave up. Will never gave up. He went and worked and worked. Last year, we saw how hard work pays off. You’d think he’s on the bottom of the totem pole, and he’s not.

“He’ll have to work on his defense more. His shooting and ball handling is fine. ... But, like I said, he’s the hardest worker I’ve ever seen.”

Text Only
  • DHS at SE soccer 4 mlh.jpg Region 7-4A championship

    If recent history is any indication, this week’s Region 7-4A championship game may not be the last time the boys soccer teams at Dalton and Southeast Whitfield stand opposed to one another this season.

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • St Louis at Rampage 4 mlh.jpg No Attack for Rampage

    The Georgia Rampage’s offense didn’t do anything in the first half — evident by the scoreboard.
    By the time new quarterback Bart Gloyd stepped in, a comeback was out of reach.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Former Dalton, Auburn QB Carter passes away

    When former Dalton High School football coach Bill Chappell learned one of his former players had died Saturday, he was shocked. His second reaction was sadness, not just because of Loran Carter’s athletic legacy but also his outstanding character.

    April 19, 2014

  • Golf at NobNorth 1  mlh.jpg Prep golf: DHS, rain steady for Nob Invite

    With the Region 7-4A tournament scheduled for Tuesday at Nob North Golf Club, Dalton coach Hunter Johnston was pleased that his team finally got its first victory of the season Saturday in Cohutta at the Nob North Invitational.

    April 19, 2014 1 Photo

  • Doug Hawley: Cancer will not hinder Run for John’s finish

    With the seventh annual Run for John races scheduled for Saturday in Dalton, there is a community focus this week on the family of the late John Bruner.

    April 19, 2014

  • DSC women win finalé

    The Dalton State College women’s tennis team earned a 5-0 win in a rain-shortened match at home against Snead State to conclude its season.

    April 19, 2014

  • Play ball on the Westside

    The long-awaited Westside Park opened to rave reviews on April 10, with baseball teams ranging from 6 to 12 years christening the the newest Whitfield County recreation facility.

    April 19, 2014

  • DHS at Heritage 1 mlh.jpg Generally disappointed

    Dalton High School’s baseball team started the fifth inning of Friday’s crucial Sub-region 7B-4A game against Heritage-Catoosa with four consecutive hits.
    The only problem for the Catamounts was that was where their good hitting started and stopped.

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • Prep roundup: Upset puts N. Murray in baseball playoffs

    Over the past few seasons, a late-season game with Sonoraville has been the deciding factor in whether the North Murray High School baseball team advanced to the state playoffs.

    April 18, 2014

  • Miller, Mariners off to NAIA title tournament

    Former Dalton High School golf standout Chase Miller is finishing his senior year at College of Coastal Georgia on a high note.

    April 18, 2014