By Lachy France
Following four years playing college basketball in the US, Brydens Sydney Uni Flames are proud to reveal that the club’s fifth signing will be the returning Lauren Nicholson. Nicholson returns to Sydney after a stellar college career at Saint Mary’s, where the guard was a two-time All-West Coast Conference first team selection.
Nicholson was part of the Flames squad between 2009 and 2011 before making the move to the United States. After being mentored by current WNBL player and fellow Sutherland junior Kate Gaze for her first two seasons at Saint Mary’s, Nicholson emerged as a leader in her own right in her final two years. Averaging 17 points per game in her senior campaign, Nicholson was exceptional at both getting to the line and hitting free throws, finishing in the top 50 for free throw attempts and sixth in the nation for free throw percentage, connecting on 89.1% of her attempts.
Free throws aren’t the only thing that Nicholson can offer though. “I feel like I can bring a great attitude to the Flames program,” Nicholson explained. “I also feel I can contribute with my smarts and ability to score the ball.” Certainly, all of these qualities have been on show to anyone who has watched Saint Mary’s play over the last two seasons as Nicholson emerged as the true leader of the Gaels’ side. Nicholson is also a solid perimeter defender with the length to disrupt opposing players.
Nicholson considered other options, including potentially moving to Europe, but in the end the lure of returning to Sydney proved too hard to resist. “I’m really looking forward to the upcoming season with the Flames,” Nicholson revealed. “After four years of college it’s exciting to return to Sydney Uni and play in front of my friends and family in my home city.”
Things have certainly changed at Brydens Stadium in those four years; in fact, Nicholson is yet to play a game at the venue. The newest member of the squad is certainly looking forward to what’s to come for the Flames, though. “With new coach Cheryl [Chambers] and a talented group of players, I can’t wait for the season to get underway.”
If, like Lauren, you also can’t wait for the season to get underway, make sure you guarantee your seat by purchasing a Flames membership for 2016/17. Memberships start from just $19! Click here for more details