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2021-22 BOYS BASKETBALL PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Jake Mooney, West Forsyth
Jake Mooney
West Forsyth senior is the Forsyth County News Boys Basketball Player of the Year after averaging 20 points, 10 rebounds, 1.6 steals, and 1.2 blocks per game. Photo by Derrick Richemond

By Derrick Richemond

Jake Mooney’s ability to consistently get to the rack and employ his strength to box out his opponents for rebounds sums up how Mooney asserted himself to be the best player in the county this season.

Mooney, West Forsyth’s 6-foot-7, 210-pound senior post, is the Forsyth County News Boys Basketball Player of the Year.

Mooney said his passion for basketball began in the driveway. At family gatherings, he would go out and shoot hoops for fun. 

West pulled off its best season in school history with Mooney's help. This year, the Wolverines became the first team in program history to win 20 games in a season, win a region championship, and advance to the second round of the state playoffs.

From the start of the season, the Wolverines clicked, and for Mooney, the season was a dream come true. 

“We’ve known each other because Liberty and Vickery are rival schools and they come together and make West,” Mooney said. “We said when we’re all together in high school we’re going to win a championship, and we finally did it all together. It's amazing.”

Mooney stood out in Wolverines’ high-scoring offense, averaging 20 points, 10 rebounds, 1.6 steals, and 1.2 blocks per game.

The way that he was able to spread the floor was one of the factors that helped him shoot 44 percent from the 3-point line. Additionally, Mooney set a school record with points in a season with 588. 

Mooney's best game came when he erupted for 29 points and set a school record for rebounds with 24 in a 93-82 win over Lambert. 

“As a team, we didn’t play well in the first half. But it was senior night, so we just came out and lit up. I couldn’t ask for better teammates,” Mooney said. 

Mooney is continuing his basketball career at Georgia College and State University, where he plans to study business. 

Mooney’s teammates say his style of play is a resemblance to the NBA star Nikola Jokić. 

“I think that’s a great comparison in the NBA,” Mooney said. “He’s a big that could push the floor, dribble, shoot, and pass really well. I’d like to be more of a stretch four.”

Mooney racked up the postseason awards, representing West by being the program’s first player to selected to the Georgia Basketball Coaches Association Class 7A all-state boys basketball team. He was also named Region 6-7A Play of the Year, Forsyth County Tip-off Club Player of the Year, and the Region 6-7A tournament’s most valuable player.