Boswell Picks Jesuit
NEW MARTINSVILLE – Magnolia has a sparkling basketball tradition.
The 2014-15 season was especially sweet for the Blue Eagles as Coach Dave Tallman’s well-drilled club pocketed the West Virginia Class A championship. It marked the third state crown Magnolia has captured under Tallman’s tutelage.
Preston Boswell was the Blue Eagles’ engine in last season’s title drive. The multi-talented point guard was a key cog in the team’s 23-5 campaign, climaxed by a victory against Wheeling Central in the state finale.
The 6-foot-2 dandy has started from Day 1 for Tallman.
Boswell’s stats are impressive, but take a backseat to what Tallman likes best about him.
“First of all, Preston is a great person off the court. He has always treated our underclassmen with great respect,” Tallman said. “There is no better fit for Preston than Wheeling Jesuit. It is a great school and Dan Sancomb is a great coach.
“Plus, Preston will be joining a former teammate in Mark Winters.
“Preston’s dad, John, also played at Wheeling Jesuit. He helps run all our offseason programs. Both will be greatly missed. Now with Preston signing with Wheeling Jesuit, he can concentrate on having the best season possible.”
With Boswell running the point the last three seasons, Magnolia has recorded a 57-19 mark (75 percent) and pocketed two OVAC banners to go with the state crown.
“Preston is one of those players who brings up the talent level in his teammates. He has great vision and is a tremendous ballhandler,” Tallman said. “Preston is difficult to defend because he is a great 3-point shooter while also being able to get to the rim. He has also gotten a lot stronger which has elevated his game.”
Boswell is a two time all-state selection, to go with All-OVAC and All-Valley honors.
His junior campaign was nothing short of amazing. He averaged 27 points, five rebounds, four assists and three steals. For his career, Boswell is averaging 21 points a contest.
“I really like the coaches at Wheeling Jesuit, and it is a great academic school,” Boswell said. “I talked to Mark (Winters) a lot, and he helped me make the decision.
“Wheeling Jesuit is also close to home. So my family will be able to see me play. I also am thinking of going into accounting and Jesuit has a great accounting program.”
With his college plans securely in place, the Magnolia star is now all about his final go-around with the Blue Eagles.
“Last year was amazing. Winning the state title is the ultimate. We wanted to send Spencer (Campbell) out on top,” Boswell said. “With my college future in place, I am able to concentrate totally on this season.
“I have been working out at the Pyles Elite Sports Performance Institute. It has helped make me get stronger and more explosive. We want to get back to Charleston.”
Preston, as well as his parents, John Boswell and Becky Ritz, live in New Martinsville.
“Wheeling Jesuit basketball fans will enjoy watching Preston play for the next four years,” Tallman said. “He brings passion to the floor. Preston is a player the Cardinal fans will embrace.”