Rhianna Barton has been playing basketball for ten years and will represent the Under-18 Girls Country State Side at the School Sport Australia Championships.RIAHN SMITH November 11, 2012 4:22am
A love of basketball runs in Rhianna Barton’s family.
Her mum Mary-Ann and sister Rebecca both made their mark on the court and now it’s Rhianna’s turn.
The Notre Dame College Student has been playing basketball for 10 years and still remembers her first competitive game.
‘‘My earliest memory would have to have been my first game when I was about six,’’ she said.
‘‘I was playing under-10s with lots of older girls and I had to fill in and mum kind of just chucked me on the court and said, ‘here you go’. I’ve loved it ever since.’’
After a decade of hard work, Rhianna was selected to represent the Under-18 Girls Country State Side at this year’s School Sport Australia Championships in Melbourne.
‘‘It was exciting to get picked because it was the first nationals I’ve ever been to,’’ Rhianna said.
‘‘Just going there for the week and playing against some of the best in the country .
For her efforts, Rhianna was awarded a $500 Local Sporting Champion grant.
To have her commitment to her sport acknowledged was a welcome bonus, Rhianna said.
‘‘I felt really honoured to know that there was support there and encouragement to pursue dreams, it was a really great feeling.’’
Rhianna is now back in town playing for the Shepparton Gators in the under-18 junior side and the Country Basketball League team.
She spends every day of the week either training or playing across Victoria, including regular trips to Bendigo to participate in Basketball Australia’s national intensive training program, internationally recognised as one of the world’s best junior programs.
‘‘It’s a lot of time but I love it,’’ Rhianna said. ‘‘I don’t have much of a social life any more.
‘‘With school and stuff it can get hard but you find the balance and manage, it’s something you just do.’’
And it’s something she’ll have to do in order to realise her dreams of playing for the Australian women’s team.
Rhianna said the first step of her plan would be to win a scholarship to play college basketball in the United States.
‘‘I would love to go to America once I’ve finished high school here, it (basketball) is just really big over there, it’s huge.’’
But at the end of the day, it’s her passion for the sport, not her ambitions that keep her on the court.
‘‘Where it can take you is really good, but (it’s) just the fact that you’re going out there, doing some physical,’’ Rhianna said.
‘‘I just love sports, (and) to know that you can have a friendly but tough sport that you can play with many different people .
Leukaemia diagnosis for Shepparton boy Travis Lamont, 17, hits his family hard.
Yarrawonga Football Netball Club senior footballer Jeremy O’Brien celebrated his 200th senior Ovens and Murray Football Netball League game against the Wodonga Bulldogs on Saturday.
The trip to Deakin Reserve pitted the fourth-placed Bulldogs up against sixth-placed Demons in a vital match to consolidate a finals berth.
Deputy Premier Peter Ryan and Deputy Nationals leader Peter Walsh are expected to make a significant and long-awaited bridge announcement tomorrow.
Sergeant Dale Simm of Rochester police is warning the public to be wary of phone calls offering all sorts of great prizes.
100 days at Tongala Primary.
Mark Grainger cannot believe his luck after suffering a heart attack on the day a new drug was approved to be administered by paramedics.
A man who attempted, but failed miserebly, to rob the Tocumwal Pie Shed is still on the run from police.
District residents judge the top releases from the Heathcote wine region during the second annual Heathcote Wine Show on the weekend.
A sporting precinct has emerged as the main driver behind merger of Cobram and Victory soccer clubs.
A top-three finish is on the cards for the Deni Rovers after they knocked off Jerilderie on Saturday.
Innovative irrigators are being encouraged to apply for a 2014 Rural Water Award and the chance to win a $2000 cash prize.
Three Benalla residents are speaking up to bring the issue of youth homelessness into the spotlight.
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