DeMatha Player to Watch

(By Jonathan Newton -- The Washington Post)
Tuesday, March 14, 2006

The road to DeMatha was a long one for junior guard Jeff Peterson. He grew up in Springfield, Mo., before he and his father, John, relocated three years ago so Jeff could play for the Stags.

"My grandfather used to read the Sunday paper, and [DeMatha was] always in the Parade magazine top 25," John Peterson said.

John Peterson also noticed that out-of-town private schools always seemed to win an annual tournament in Springfield. With Jeff developing as a basketball player, it seemed natural to want to send him to a top program.

"One day we were talking, and he asked if I wanted to give it a chance," Jeff Peterson said.

Things have worked out well so far, though it has not always been easy. With Virginia Tech recruit Nigel Munson starting at point guard the past three seasons, Peterson has been a backup. This season, Coach Mike Jones went to a starting lineup that included Munson and Peterson, and Peterson has responded, averaging 8.6 points, third on the team behind Munson and shooting guard Austin Freeman.

"Quiet as kept, Jeff Peterson was the only one in double figures all three [Washington Catholic Athletic Conference tournament] games," Jones said. "He's gone about his business and never complained. What we see is what everybody else is going to see this summer and all next year when he is our point guard. He definitely has sacrificed an awful lot for this team to be good."

-- Josh Barr

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