Following in the very recent footsteps of the likes of Arielle Douillette and Emilie Lafond, Lo-Ellen Prep standout Aneisha Rismond has elected to stay at home, committing to the Laurentian Voyageurs women's basketball team, beginning with the 2021-2022 season.
And while the cloud of ambiguity that is hanging over university athletics may have moved the needle slightly on her decision, Rismond noted that this was not a COVID-related choice, at least not on its own.
"I didn't really want to move away from home, especially with all of the uncertainty about whether we will play or not play next year," noted the 6'1" local talent, who graduated from Alliance St-Joseph and attended College Notre Dame for one year before making the move to Lo-Ellen.
"But even if it wasn't for the pandemic, I think I still would have stayed home. I enjoy playing in front of family and friends. With our LEP team, we watched a lot of the women's and men's games (at Laurentian) and I just really liked the team dynamics."
"Having scrimmaged with them a couple of years ago and every summer since, I got a feel for how the team was."
On the flipside, there is a versatility to her game that clearly appealed to Voyageur head coach Jason Hurley. "Aneisha will help in many ways," he said in a university issued release. "She can guard pick and roll actions, and can play out of the low post or face the basket."
His approach certainly spoke to Rismond. "I have known Jason for a while, he's been following me for a while," said the soon-to-be nursing student. "During our talks, at one of our meetings, I really liked that he said that I could play multiple positions."
"I liked how he felt that I could develop over five years."
It is with that vision in mind that Rismond is attacking the growth of her game as she prepares for the play at the next level. "I want to work on my outside game; I'm practicing shooting a lot more," she said.
"I am more of a back to the basket player, but I'm starting to play on the outside more. A lot of the players on our (Lo-Ellen) team are guards, so I am starting to pick up things from their play as well."
And when OUA action ultimately resumes, both coach and player alike are looking to a fit that pays dividends, right across the board. "We are privileged that Aneisha felt we could get her to her potential as an individual and as a member of our program," said Hurley.