North Buncombe – On Thursday (May 11th), a North Buncombe BlackHawk basketball player signed up to become a basketball player for the Warriors. Not the Erwin Warriors, but the Southern Wesleyan University Warriors, a division II university in South Carolina less than two hours away from Weaverville.
Senior point guard Chad Clark, surrounded by family, friends, and fellow teammates, signed the commitment papers in the school’s cafeteria to play at the 117-year-old learning institution.
“He’s excited! I’m excited and nervous for him. But I’m excited for him,” said Chad’s dad, Jeremy Clark, about his eldest son. “He’s the first one to move out of the house.” Jeremy is glad Chad is staying close to home. “He has two younger brothers, so staying close is kind of nice for him to come to see them play as well as us going to see him.”
Chad’s brother, Trent, played alongside his older brother for BlackHawks Varsity Coach Chuck Robinson this year. Chad scored an average of 22.1 points a game, made 202 field goals this season, along with 116 free throws, and averaged five assists per game, according to stats on Maxpreps.com.
“I’m very excited for him! I’m super stoked he gets to live out his childhood dream by playing ball in college,” Andrea, Chad’s mom, told the Tribune. “He set a good example, he’s got two younger brothers, so it makes it feel like it can happen if you put in the work in the classroom and in the gym.
Before Chad sat down for pictures and to sign his commitment papers, he told the Tribune, “It’s an amazing opportunity. Not many people get to take their sport to the next level. So I’m blessed!”
He went on to say he had a great coach and teammates, and that’s what he’ll miss most as he moves on to the college level. “Definitely the friendships and bonds I’ve had with these guys, a lot of whom I’ve played with since middle school,” The BlackHawks were 13-13 this year, losing the first round in the playoffs to Enka.
Chad said that his parents, who were also athletic, played a big part in his interest in sports and playing basketball. “I played a little baseball when I was young, but basketball was definitely my heart and soul.”
Asked what he was most looking forward to in college, he said, “The college experience, like working out, getting in the gym late at night, traveling, just stuff you can’t do in high school.” Clark plans to major in education and hopes to be a math or physical education teacher and coach one day.