Transfer brings excitement to CCS

Published 2:42 pm Tuesday, December 9, 2008

It’s only one week into the season, but Cornerstone Christian School basketball fans are having thoughts of a magical year.

Junior guard JV McKinney transfered to Cornerstone over the summer from Vincent, where he averaged 11 points per game and was in position to be the team’s top returning scorer. But all of that changed when his older brother Jon-Jon, an assistant coach at Cornerstone, talked him into following in his footsteps and leaving Vincent for Cornerstone.

“I figured I could come and help this team out a whole lot,” said McKinney, who averaged 26 points in his first four games this season, including a season-high 32 against Kingwood on Monday.

CCS head coach Tim Bullard said McKinney made an instant impact on the program.

“When I found out he was coming in, it was an instant boost,” Bullard said. “We had the pieces, but we knew we were missing a star, that go-to guy … He’s our difference maker.”

The difference began with an increased interest by students wanting to play basketball, something out of the norm for a program that was 4-16 the previous year.

The Chargers are finding double-digit scorers to put around McKinney, such as a post pressence from Stephen Bulger and Josh Dunnaway and an added outside shot from Kendall Moore.

“We’ve been playing good as a team, sharing the ball, scoring and really, just running folks out of the gym,” McKinney said.

He said he hopes to provide leadership to the team most of all and wants the chance to lead Cornerstone to an AISA state title and be named MVP like his brother was able to do in 2004-05.

“He’s the spark that makes us go,” Bullard said. “We’re going to go as far as he takes us.”

So far, defenses have been unable to stop McKinney from scoring, but he and the Chargers will face two in-area challenges from Coosa Valley and Shelby Academy as the season plays on.

“It’s a different excitement level,” Bullard said. “He impacts more than just the floor.”