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Kamron Carroll's long journey

Former Alemany player carving his niche with smaller SCCS program

Posted: December 23, 2013 11:07 p.m.
Updated: December 23, 2013 11:07 p.m.

Alemany transfer Kamron Carroll leads the SCCS boys basketball team in scoring and assists this season.

 

Every time Kamron Carroll puts on his uniform, the Santa Clarita Christian School boys basketball team’s chances of winning increase exponentially.

To begin his senior season, the 6-foot, 160-pound playmaker is leading the newly-improved Cardinals with 15.1 points and four assists per game.

In many ways, the Cardinals’ path to success this season will begin with the ball in Carroll’s hands — statistics will show that is the case already.

But Carroll’s path to success began on a much larger stage than the small Christian school in Canyon Country.

In 2012, the Bishop Alemany Warriors varsity boys basketball team went 33-4, attained a top-5 state ranking, and defeated Sacred Heart Cathedral of San Francisco 71-67 to win a CIF Division III state championship.

Carroll was the fifth-leading scorer on the Warriors’ junior varsity team that year.

Headed into last season, he was varsity-bound and looking to make an impact on a Warriors team that had big shoes to fill.

That was where things took a turn.

“I wasn’t having fun. I felt a lot of pressure to impress everyone,” says Carroll of his final days in an Alemany uniform. “Whenever I got in I felt like I had to show off my skills or else I wouldn’t have a chance to prove myself, and I got worried that it would cause my teammates to think I was a ball hog who wouldn’t pass.”

By the end of 2013, the guard was attending classes at SCCS.

Both Kamron and his mother, Yolanda, cite academics as the primary reason for the switch, although multiple players from Alemany’s 2012-2013 varsity squad ended up transferring out of the program at season’s end — the most notable of which being current Village Christian standouts Razhaun “Bear” Henderson and Bennie Boatwright.

Carroll’s former teammates have multiple scholarship offers from Division I programs, including Colorado, Nevada, Arizona, Connecticut, Florida, Gonzaga and UCLA.

Carroll remains close friends with both of them.

“I was worried obviously about my friendships with the other guys on the team, but when I talked to them about how I thought I maybe wanted to leave they were supportive and told me to do what’s best for me,” says Carroll. “It was a tough decision, but I had to grow up soon.”

For Yolanda, the decision was obvious.

“It’s a great school, Kamron has a big personality but when he’s in a large environment he’s less likely to be asking questions and receiving the attention from instructors we wanted,” Yolanda Carroll says.

The family, from Valencia, then began seeking out Kamron’s best alternatives.

“I had some mutual friends that asked around and helped me out with the process,” Kamron says. “We heard about the SCCS program, how it was on the rise with some big international players and that their point guard, Larue Nixon, was graduating so there would be a spot that needed to be filled.”

Carroll eventually picked SCCS over other local schools, joining the basketball team at the end of the year.

“I’m so glad I listened to my parents,” says Carroll, uttering words that few parents ever expect to hear. “I am a lot closer to God, closer to the people at my school and around my area.”

Additionally, Carroll and SCCS head coach James Mosley have developed a strong working relationship.

“We knew what kind of talent Kamron was when he came into the program,” Mosley says. “He’s very quick, makes good decisions and is a very coachable player. We are blessed to have added him to the talent we already had.”

Since coming to SCCS, Kamron has also taken on new endeavors.

This past season, the senior rushed for 706 yards and seven touchdowns on 8.1 yards per carry for the Cardinals football team. He earned All-San Joaquin League second-team honors as a result.

Still, Carroll’s final act in his senior season has yet to play out.

“We want to put this program on the map and win as many games as possible,” Carroll says of the Cardinals basketball team. “Maybe the gym isn’t as big, but it still gets loud in there and it’s cool that you don’t have to look very far in the stands to locate your friends and family.”

If not for Carroll’s vibrant and optimistic personality, his narrative is one that could have easily been shaped by hard feelings and a desire for redemption.

But really, he’s just a kid that wants to play sports, get good grades, and have a fun time doing it.

ernie@signalscv.com



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