Young basketballer steps up to national competition

Ella Averill. Photo: Jon Hewson. d492833 communitypix.com.au
Ella Averill. Photo: Jon Hewson. d492833 communitypix.com.au

ELLA Averill is an up-and-coming basketball star, but it wasn’t always like that.

The Carey Baptist College Harrisdale student had tried her hand at many different sports, from cricket to ice skating, dancing and gymnastics, but it was when she stepped onto the basketball court for the first time that she found her fit.

Yet it wasn’t necessarily the sport itself that drew Ella to the court.

“I was in year two when I started, it was because my neighbours played and I wanted to wear what they wore to their games,” she said.

Years on, and now a leader on the court playing for Lakeside Lightning in the WA Basketball League (WABL), Ella was one of just 10 players selected to represent the WA metro women’s team in July’s U16 Australian Junior Championships.

She said she had tried out for the team last year but wasn’t chosen.

“Being cut fuelled my drive to be selected this year,” she said.

“The trials were very physically demanding being five hours on Saturday and the same on the Sunday, but they were not as difficult as I remember from the year before.

“I was very excited and over the moon (to make the team), I had tried so hard, practiced so much and improved a lot.

“I felt proud of myself and that it was worth all the effort.”

Ella said she was up for the challenge of playing against the best young women from around the country and hoped it would be the next step on her journey to bigger things.

“I would love to go to the AIS and represent Australia, as well as play for a team like Seattle Storm in the WNBA,” she said.

“ I would also love to play in the Lakeside Lightning Development League and State Basketball League teams.”

The U16 Australian Junior Basketball Championships is on July 6 to 13 in Darwin.

 

Other Locals to play for WA

U16 Metro Women

Mia Jacobs (Lakeside)

Kyrah Daniels (Lakeside)

Riley Burd (Lakeside-reserve)

U16 Metro Men

Ben Henshall (Cockburn)

Ty Channells (Cockburn)

Noah Valentine (Cockburn)

Dallin Elisarow (Cockburn)

Josh Draper (Lakeside)