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Section Five Greats Come Home

Shenise Johnson, Jarron Jones at same HS game
It was purely a coincidence.

Rush-Henrietta grad Shenise Johnson was home after her first season in the WNBA. Aquinas grad Jarron Jones was home after his first season of playing time with the Notre Dame football team.

Both showed up at the new Rush-Henrietta gym for a basketball game between the R-H and Aquinas to see a brother play. Jones was supporting Jamir on the AQ JV. Johnson wanted to see Corey Reeves play for the R-H varsity.

It was the Section Five version of a Lakers game with a celebrity-littered crowd.

Despite the WNBA offseason being in session, Johnson says she plays all year round. This time of year, her basketball happens overseas. Getting to Rochester this week was almost a lark. She thought her plane would be delayed until Wednesday, but a last minute no-show allowed her to slide onto an earlier flight.

Johnson completed a fairly successful rookie season in the pros. She started 24 of 33 games for the San Antonio Silver Stars averaging 11 points and four rebound a game. It was an eye opener in more ways than one.

"I watched these (players in the WNBA) as I grew up. They were my idols. Now, I have to actually guard them and play with them and compete with them," Johnson says. "I'm happy to be out there, but now I know I belong there. Afterwards, we go to the restaurant... have something to drink, something to eat. It's all fun and games on the court and then we get to know each other afterwards. So, I love it. I enjoy it."

Johnson says she only gets home a couple times per year. Each time, she tries to spend some time giving back to the community. "When I was home last time I did something at the community center at Baden Street," Johnson says. "I also did something at WDKX where I did some signatures.. free food.. free drinks. I went down there and gave them some positive encouragement."

Jones did not play at all his freshman year at Notre Dame, but was a key role player in 2013. He was on the field for all 12 games and finished with 20 tackles, a sack and two blocked kicks.

"It was a really fun season with memories that will last for a lifetime," Jones says. "Now the focus is getting ready for next year."

Jones has been working out since coming home for winter break. He playfully says he's ashamed to admit his weight is up to 320 pounds. "That's what playing nose guard gets you," Jones says. "But, it's been a fun ride."

It's a ride that Jones is happy to get off when he returns to Rochester. He's wants to leave the spotlight in South Bend.

"I try to get away from that. I try to be a regular kid like I was at Aquinas," Jones says. "Being with family, being with friends, getting away from that spotlight. You enjoy it for so long, but when you get home, you just want to be your regular self because that's what got you where you are now."
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