By Phil Anastasia
Cherry Hill West's basketball team should get a big lift Thursday from the return of senior guard Rodney Williams.
Williams, a 1,000-point career scorer, has not played this season. He said Wednesday he will make his debut against Winslow Twp. in an Olympic Patriot game at 5:15 p.m.
Williams has been rehabilitating from a fractured fibula in his left leg that he sustained in a football game against Woodrow Wilson on Oct. 12. He missed the rest of the football season.
"I finally got cleared over winter break that the bone was completely healed," Williams said. "Since then it was just gradual workouts. I started running on the wrestling mat, then made my way to the court.
"I'm not worried about my leg. I feel good."
Williams, who has commited to Syracuse on a football scholarship, said he was in contact with Syracuse officials through the rehabilitation process and that they were OK with him playing basketball for Cherry Hill West.
Williams was one of the top players in his class in South Jersey as a freshman, sophomore and junior. He averaged 16.7 points last season and scored his 1,000th career point.
Cherry Hill West (6-5) has won six of eight after an 0-3 start. The Lions have victories over rival Cherry Hill East (10-1), the No. 9 team in The Inquirer Top 10, as well as Shawnee, Timber Creek and Cherokee.
Cherry Hill West has been led by junior forward Can Oztamur, who is averaging 19.7 points, as well as junior guard Elijah Bey. The Lions lead the Olympic Patriot division with a 3-0 record.
"We've got a pretty good team -- better than a lot of people realize," Williams said. "I think we've got a pretty good future."
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