Ipswich Basketball Club's Ella Pearson looking forward to America move
Many people would find the prospect of moving over the other side of the Atlantic Ocean on your own a daunting one, but Ella Pearson is relishing the opportunity.
The Sudbury-based 18-year-old will make the switch to the USA in September to continue her basketball development.
Despite widespread interest, Pearson has picked Newberry College as the destination, believing the South Carolina-situated facility to be best suited to her needs – both on and off the court.
Leaving will mean saying goodbye to Ipswich Basketball Club, somewhere she has been attached to for a number of years. It has been a successful period as well, with the guard having won titles at under-16, under-18 and senior level.
It will be tough, but the former Thomas Gainsborough School pupil believes it’s a chance she could not pass up.
“Initially I was not 100 per cent sure America is something I wanted to do,” said Pearson, who will study sports science. “It wasn’t that I was against it, it’s just something that was never set in stone in my mind.
“But after talking to my coach I decided to start the process. It just seemed to click with Newberry straight away and I got on really well with the coaches.
“My team-mate Coco (Leung) has been out there and she had a really good time.
“The team’s style of play is very similar to what I play now, so it will suit me. It’s a fast tempo from the games I’ve watched and in the end it became a bit of a no brainer.
“Leaving my team and family will be hard, but I moved away from home for a couple of years when I first joined Ipswich.
“I like trying new things and I think it’s important you have new experiences – I cannot wait to get started.”
Before making the move to the States, Pearson and her Ipswich team-mates are focused on winning some more silverware, both in the academy and the senior team.
Matches are beginning to start up again, and she is hopeful of signing off on a high note.
“That is our aim, to win as much as we can,” she added. “For my generation, this will be the end at the club because a lot of the girls are leaving at the same time.
“Last season we wanted to win everything and we only ended up playing the Under-18 Cup because of Covid. We were co-champs in another competition and that is not what we wanted.
“Hopefully we can show our quality and go out on a high.”