Jalen Jackson took challenge to build Joliet Catholic into winner

Jalen Jackson 3

Joliet Catholic guard Jalen Jackson elevates over Adam Radcliffe of St. Edward. Jackson led the East Suburban Catholic in scoring last year. (Jon Cunningham / Dally Southtown)

By Pat Disabato, Daily Southtown

When Jalen Jackson made the decision in the summer before his freshman year to attend Joliet Catholic, he knew there was considerable work to be done to make the basketball program competitive.

The Hilltoppers had been languishing near the bottom of the East Suburban Catholic prior to Jackson’s arrival.

Many kids would have chosen a different route, preferring to commit to a more successful program.

However, the challenge of building the Hilltoppers into a feared unit appealed to Jackson.

“I knew it was going to be a lot of work, but it would also be very gratifying once we did it,” said Jackson, who lives in Crest Hill. “I felt comfortable at Joliet Catholic and I wanted to make an impact.”

Jackson’s impact on the program is undeniable. The 5-foot-11 senior guard has a knack for finding the bottom of the basket, whether he’s launching shots from beyond the 3-point line, taking his defender off the dribble to the basket or wiggling his way into open space to drain a mid-range jumper.

Click Here to read Disabato’s entire article from the February 3, 2016 edition of the Chicago Tribune’s Daily Southtown.

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