A FORMER Hamersley gridiron player has become one of the first Australian quarterbacks to score an American university scholarship.
In 2015, Lachlan Poor (18) moved to West Palm Beach in the United States to pursue his dream of playing college gridiron.
The former Claremont Jets junior will line up for the University of St Francis’s National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) division two side Fighting Saints Illinois in August.
Poor returned to his old club to share his experience of American high schools and representing Australia at the world championships with promising juniors.
The former Newman College student told the Stirling Times he felt “nostalgic” coming home.
“I remember when I first started, people were helping me out, so it was kind of nostalgic to come back here and start helping out the club, teaching what I have been taught over the past two years in the US,” he said.
Poor, who has been playing gridiron for six years, said his junior coach urged him to become a quarterback.
“I started practising down at Eglinton Aintree Reserve after my first season because I wanted to be a quarterback,” he said.
“At the time, the sport was not that big so I was always by myself and I had to improvise so I started using the Australian Rules football goalposts. It definitely helped my accuracy in passing because the poles are so narrow.”
Poor said he was excited to play for the Saints after playing “catch-up” to other players for two years.
“I was actually behind when I went over because all the kids started playing at seven or eight years old,” he said.
“I knew no one but it is good because I met a lot of great people; it was definitely worth it.
“Not many kids coming from Australia have an opportunity and I am glad that I am one of the first people to be given that opportunity.”
His father Justin said his son’s “never-say-die” attitude helped him achieve his goals
His mother Melinda said the family missed him dearly.
“It is one of those things that you have to do because the benefits and the outcomes are more than what we expected,” she said.
“It is probably the most difficult time of my whole life actually but it was worth it.”