The Binghamton University men’s basketball team finalized its latest addition yesterday, signing Dalton “Storm” Clonch to a National Letter of Intent.
Clonch, a 6-foot-5-inch forward from North Wilkesboro, N.C., will join the Bearcats as a freshman next year.
As a junior at North Wilkes High School, Clonch earned Wilkes County Player of the Year last season, averaging 16 points and 10 rebounds per contest. His on-court performances earned him first team All-Conference and first-team All-County selections.
“He has uncanny athletic ability,” said interim head coach Mark Macon of the recruit. “He is a hard-nosed basketball player, which I love. He plays both ends of the floor. He still has a lot to learn for the college game, but he does have the skill set, in terms of his ability, that I like.”
Through three years of high school, Clonch scored more than 750 points. In North Wilkes’ first game last week, he scored 24 points while grabbing 11 rebounds in his first game as a senior.
With senior forwards Greer Wright, Moussa Camara and Mahamoud Jabbi all slated to graduate after this season, Macon hopes Clonch’s presence can be felt immediately.
“He’s definitely going to be able to play,” Macon said. “Especially if he comes in with the kind of ability I know he has.”
Clonch led his high school to a 22-6 record in 2009-10, en route to a Mountain Valley Conference championship.
“You always want a winner,” Macon said. “You always want a kid that has won some games, especially having a championship under his belt. Being involved in any kind of tournament play where you’ve had some kind of success is always positive. He understands winning. He knows how to win, and understands what it takes.”
In the classroom, Clonch has been extremely successful, boasting a 99 grade-point average.
“He’s the kind of kid that Binghamton would want here, especially for his ability to be a great student,” Macon said. “He is a great student and an exceptional athlete.”
Clonch is also a multi-sport athlete and was a standout high jumper for North Wilkes High School. At the North Carolina state track championship last spring, Clonch earned a seventh-place finish.
With a 37-inch vertical jump, Clonch has earned the nickname “Storm.” As a high school high jumper, he was able to clear a height of 6 feet 7 inches.