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  • Progress photo by Travis Dockery
    Hayesville High School senior Josh Cottrell signs to play basketball for Western Carolina University on Thursday, Nov. 9.

Cottrell makes it official, signs with WCU

On Thursday, Nov. 9, Hayesville High School senior Josh Cottrell signed a National Letter of Intent to attend Western Carolina University and play basketball for the Catamounts. 

Cottrell is a three-time All Big Smoky Mountain Conference selection and has been selected to the Asheville Citizen Times All Western North Carolina team twice, the North Carolina Basketball Coaches Association All district team two times and has led the Hayesville Yellow Jackets to two Big Smoky Mountain Conference Championships. According to school officials, Cottrell is only the second men’s basketball player in HHS history to sign with a Division 1 program.

In his junior season, the 6’2” guard had a points-per-game average of 27.1 which was tops in the Big Smoky Mountain Conference. 

Cottrell chose WCU because he felt like it was a great fit both academically and athletically. After signing, Cottrell said, “It’s a dream come true to have an opportunity to play for WCU and I’m super thankful.” When asked who has influenced him, Cottrell said, “Everyone really. Obviously my parents and family but also the coaches here at Hayesville along with my teammates and the fans. The support has been overwhelming.”

The senior said signing now allows him to turn his attention to the 2017-18 season. “It’s great to have this nailed down and to have a certainty about my future. That allows me to focus on this team, this season and go after a championship.”

Hayesville head coach Michael Cottrell said, “Josh is a special player and we are a much better team because of his basketball skills and talents, but his biggest asset to our program has been his unique ability to lead and make everyone around him better.” The joy was two-fold for Coach Cottrell as Josh is his youngest son. “We are very proud of his decision and opportunity to play at the next level.”

Josh will begin his final season for Hayesville when the Yellow Jackets travel to Blue Ridge Early College on Tuesday, Nov. 21.

By Travis Dockery Sports writer

Clay County Progress

Mailing Address: PO Box 483, Hayesville, NC 28904
Physical Address: 43 Main Street, Hayesville, NC 28904
Phone: 828-389-8431
Fax: 828-389-9997