WHILE the Women’s National Basketball League (WNBL) season is still a month and a half away, the competition has not taken much of a break with plenty of sides filling out their rosters ahead of the season start date in November.
While there have been some big signings from across the seas, there is still a wealth of local talent that have exploded over the last 12 months. The Australian basketball system now has plenty of avenues to joining the nation’s highest competition, and as a result of this, there is a new wave of female basketballers joining the ranks at quite a young age.
Fitting that bill perfectly is Dallas Loughridge, who has just signed with the Southside Flyers ahead of their upcoming campaign. She is fresh off a successful stint with the Australian Gems, where they emerged victorious in the recent FIBA Under-18 Asian Championship. Loughridge played a key role in this campaign, and continued to grow her status as one of the country’s finest young prospects.
Playing at the point guard position, Loughridge has proven to be a handy inclusion to any team she has suited up for to this point in her career. She has proven speed and shown the ability to shoot the rock. While it will take a while to adjust to the pace of WNBL level, Loughridge has already displayed some serious foot speed and can play the ball extremely well when running downhill.
Hailing from South Gippsland, she has represented Vic Country every year since under-12’s, and reached the pinnacle of her career to date when being selected to represent Australia for the Under-19 World Cup last year, and this year’s Asian Championship.
She will likely thrive under the wing of teammates Maddison Rocci and Lauren Jackson, both of whom are also set for big seasons at WNBL level.
Loughridge expressed her excitement to join a talented Southside list.
“I am very excited to be part of the Flyers team. Playing in the WNBL has been a major goal of mine since I started playing and I am really looking forward to the opportunity. Joining the Flyers is a real bonus, they are such a great team and to think I will be playing with Lauren Jackson is surreal,” Loughridge said this week from India.
With a couple of the Flyers’ players approaching the twilight of their careers, the injection of such talented youth is a promising sign for the future.