Mitchell pg 11 4-11-19

Tre Mitchell took a leap of faith and joined a first-year prep basketball program at Woodstock Academy two years ago.
It netted the native of Pittsburgh and now Woodstock resident a couple of National Prep Championship tournament appearances, a Connecticut Gatorade Player of the Year Award and the chance to be the cornerstone of a team that went 73-7 in the past two seasons.
Why not try it again?
The 6-foot-9 forward recently verbally committed to play Division I college basketball for UMass.
Mitchell had offers from more well-established programs such as Syracuse, Indiana, Georgia Tech, Virginia Tech and Providence College.
Instead, he chose the Minutemen.
UMass finished with an 11-21 record this past season and the Atlantic-10 Conference team has not had a winning season since it went 17-15 in the 2014-15 season.
“Of course, there are people who are a little confused as to why I am going to what would be considered a lower program than some of (his other choices), but it’s my life to live,” Mitchell said.
It’s also what he is used to.
“I’ve thought about it a lot. Obviously, some of the other programs were bigger but I like the challenge. My entire life I have kind of been the underdog, I’ve gone unnoticed. I picked (Woodstock Academy) and it was a first-year program. I took a chance and look what I got out of it. I kind of like that idea, that challenge, going in to help turn a program around.”
Mitchell had a little help in his decision.
Fellow Woodstock Academy Gold player T.J. Weeks committed to UMass just a few days before Mitchell.
The two spoke about the school when Mitchell went on his official visit and went over some things that the two had mutual affection for.
“We both kind of came to the conclusion that we wanted to go there together,” Mitchell said.
There was one other eavesdropper.
Another Woodstock Academy Gold player, Preston Santos, had already committed to UMass last fall.
“Preston was in both of our ears, consistently, telling us about the place and once we got there, everything he said was true,” Mitchell said.
Mitchell’s signing gave UMass the top-rated recruiting class in the Atlantic-10 this season.
It also gives the Minutemen a chance for a new start under third-year head coach Matt McCall.
“He kind of cleaned house a little,” Mitchell said. “The players that I met and spent some time with, I really enjoyed. I think we’re going to be great moving forward.”
McCall also showed Mitchell some film of the style of game that the UMass coach envisions for his new recruiting class.
“He showed us films of how he runs sets and things and how to get guys open looks. It’s kind of similar to the way we play (at Woodstock Academy). I think it’s a system that all three of us will be able to thrive in,” Mitchell said.
Mitchell scored over 1,000 points and grabbed over 700 rebounds in a Woodstock Academy uniform over the past two years. He was named Power 5 Conference Player of the Year and tournament Most Valuable Player in each of the last two years.
Earlier in the season, he was debating whether or not he was going to stay at Woodstock Academy for a post-graduate season. Now, that decision and where he will be going next are all behind him.
“It’s nice,” Mitchell said. “No one is hitting my phone any more except the coaches from UMass and I can focus even more than I was before on just developing my body and getting better than I was before to be even more ready when I get there.”
The commitments by Mitchell and Weeks increased the number of Woodstock Academy Gold prep basketball players who will play Division I basketball in the fall to 10.
Marc Allard
Sports Information Director
The Woodstock Academy


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