Truman senior Becca Jonas likes to describe herself as a positive, optimistic thinker, but the truth is it’s the negative moments that fueled her basketball career.
The fuel dates back to March 1, 2013, when Truman took an undefeated record into a Missouri Class 5 district title game against Kearney. The Patriots walked off the floor with their first loss, ending their season.
“It really motivated me as a player,” Jonas said. “I spent a lot of early mornings and late nights at the gym and did a lot of conditioning — anything I could to try to improve so that wouldn’t happen again.”
Jonas added versatility to her game. Strictly a post player before, she worked to improve her perimeter shooting, ball-handling and passing.
“I didn’t want to be limited to playing inside,” Jonas said. “I just wanted to be harder to guard by bringing another aspect to my game.”
Jonas averaged 17.9 points, 8.1 rebounds, 2.1 assists and 1.4 blocks per game this season, making her The Star’s All-Metro girls basketball player of the year.
Truman defeated Kearney in a rematch in the Missouri Class 5, District 14 championship — a game in which Jonas scored 28 points — before falling to Lee’s Summit North by two points in a sectional playoff. The Patriots finished 26-2.