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Alumni Watch 2: Back-to-Back SSC player of the week awards for Maya Price

With the Christmas break just around the corner, it offers a great opportunity to catch up on how the Ipswich Alumni are getting on.

Across the pond in America, Maya Price has achieved a season high and game deciding 30 points against Nova Southeastern. Maya shot 13-19 in the game which was also her best Field Goal percentage so far this campaign. A week later, Maya followed this with her most ever rebounds in a single college game with 5 offensive and 12 defensive rebounds in only 28 minutes. These performances have led to Maya earning back-to back conference player of the week awards. Her 17 rebounds were the most by a Triton in a game since 2005. She also earned high praise from her coach Paul Honsinger who said, "Maya Price, in particular, was exceptional on the glass”.

Many are now getting settled into their new surroundings in America including Susannah Rafiu who has played in two more games since the last Alumni Watch with 8 mins and 11 mins coming against Marist and Lafayette respectively. Susannah’s team, the Columbia Lions, have started the season successfully with an 9-2 record as Susannah builds up her fitness following her recovery from injury. Another mover, Montana State’s Caleb Fuller has also featured in two games since the last Alumni Watch where he saw 20+ minutes of action in both. Caleb got a season-high 4 assists against Omaha and is shooting above 50% from the floor in his Senior campaign.

Moving across the Big Sky Conference from Caleb’s Montana State, Eastern Washington’s Ethan Price led scoring with 16 points for Eastern Washington in a tight 76-77 loss against South Dakota State. Ethan is also averaging 5.2 rebounds a game, which is the second highest on the team.

Esther Little has started to get more consistent minutes for Gonzaga which included getting 6 points, 4 rebounds and 3 assists at home to Queens in 26 minutes. She has already got more minutes than the whole of last season with a current average of 12.2 a game, representing her expanded role on this year’s Gonzaga squad, who are 9-2 on the season.

In Florida, Ashleigh Pink continues a common theme of playing twice since the previous catch up as she has gone up against Fla. Southern and Rollins. Her field goal percentage currently sits at 54.7%, including 46% from 3, both of which represent a career-highs in her 5 year spell at Barry University.

Sophomore Ella Pearson has managed a season-high 8 rebounds in her second 30+ minute match of the season against Erskine. Ella has also already managed more assists this season than last in only two-thirds of the minutes, another student who has taken on a bigger role in her Sophomore season.

Jonny Hall has been on the back of back-to-back overtime defeats for Missouri Valley. However, did manage the most blocks on his team in both outings, making an impact as a rim protector.

In France, two former Ipswich players are making a name for themselves. Joshua Apple of Calais Dragons is averaging 13 points and 7 rebounds for his side, who are currently 4th in a closely contested division, with 4th-8th in the standings all sharing the same record. Meanwhile, Harriet Welham finished up for the Christmas break with 37 points and 11 rebounds against Basket Nord Sundgau but it wasn’t enough as her Besancon side went down 69-74.

Back in England, Cameron Taylor-Willis has appeared in one WBBL match for the Essex Rebels since the last recap. She managed 3 rebounds and 4 points in 12 minutes during a victory over the Oaklands Wolves.

The Essex Rebels men’s team is also the home to plenty of former Ipswich faces. Lee Linton-Hodges got two double-figure point scores against the London Lions and the Loughborough Riders. In the second game Lee was also backed up by double figure scores from two other former Ipswich players with Rory Winter and Jake Eynon both scoring 12. Dylan Johns managed 6 rebounds and 4 blocks in the loss to Loughborough with Ben Winter getting 4 rebounds.

Elsewhere in NBL Division One, a highly anticipated match up between two undefeated sides was the headline fixture of the month. Worthing Thunder’s Veron Eze featured for Worthing in the close loss to Hemel Storm, who had ex-Ipswich standout guard Sam Newman representing them. Sam managed 13 points, 8 rebounds and 5 assists in the 100-95 victory over Worthing Thunder, leaving Hemel as the NBL Division One’s only remaining unbeaten team with one weekend to go until the Christmas break. Moyo Adekeye managed 12 points in 17 minutes when he came up against Sam’s Hemel Storm for his Nottingham Hoods.


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