MacArthur's Jones named Texas Player of Year

Irving MacArthur junior Alexis Jones, who was named MVP of the Class 5A state title game, was named the 2010-11 Texas Girls Basketball Player of the Year by Gatorade/ESPN RISE on Thursday.

Jones, a 5-9 forward, led MacArthur (35-2) to the 5A state championship. She averaged 24 points, 9.9 rebounds, 7.8 assists, 5.0 steals and 1.5 blocks per game. The two-time returning Class 5A First Team All-State selection also was a member of the gold-medal winning USA Basketball U18 National Team at the 2010 FIBA Americas Championship.

The award recognizes outstanding athletic excellence, academic achievement and exemplary character on and off the court. Jones is now a finalist for the national player of the year award, which will be announced later this month.

Jones has maintained a B-plus average in the classroom. In addition to donating her time locally at a food bank, the YMCA and the Boys & Girls Club of America, she has volunteered as part of a youth literacy-outreach campaign and a charitable holiday gift-giving initiative.

“I’ve been doing this for 39 years, and Alexis Jones and Tamika Catchings are the two top players we’ve ever faced,” said Sue Cannon, head coach of rival Trinity High. “She’s a complete player, and she’s so unselfish. That’s the thing I love about her. She looks to pass. She’s an exceptional scorer, penetrator and 3-point shooter, but the sign of a great player is when you make everyone around you better.

"She’s made her team so much better by playing unselfishly and within the team concept. I’ve never seen such a complete player as a junior in high school. The thought of having to go against her twice next year is pretty unsettling.”