By ALEX SPONSELLER Warwick native and recent La Salle Academy graduate Elayna Comella had an impressive outing at this month's A Shot For Life challenge in Newport. A Shot For Life is a fundraising company that raises money toward brain cancer research,
By ALEX SPONSELLER Warwick native and recent La Salle Academy graduate Elayna Comella had an impressive outing at this month’s A Shot For Life challenge in Newport.
A Shot For Life is a fundraising company that raises money toward brain cancer research, and holds various sporting events throughout the area.
This summer’s tournament featured some of the state’s top basketball players and was a day-long shooting tournament to not only raise funds toward the cause, but to also determine who the best shooters were in Rhode Island.
Comella finished the day in second place in the girls tournament and raised $1,300 dollars in total.
“It was such a great day. It was more than just basketball and that is what reminds me why I play - that environment. Every girl that was in the gym was on the same team and rooting for each other. It meant a lot to be there that day and to raise funds all summer,” said Comella.
Even for one of the state’s top players in Comella, shooting non-stop for two straight hours forced her to be at her best.
“It was a lot harder than I anticipated having to shoot with no breaks. I shot about 1,200 shots which was crazy, I had never shot that much in a day let alone two hours. Once you get into a rhythm, it gets easier, it becomes muscle memory.”
Comella also made her college decision official recently, committing to play at Eastern Connecticut State University in the winter.
Her decision was an easy one, as she was sold on the school almost immediately when visiting.
“I visited a few other schools, but I met a few of the girls and as soon as I walked on campus I said that this is where I want to be. It just felt right, The coach was great, the players were great, the environment, it was perfect. It felt like where I was supposed to be,” Comella said.
Comella participated in the team’s summer program and got a taste of what college basketball will be like. She is expecting to face a much faster pace of play and is preparing for that at the next level.
“The little things make a big difference. You can’t take one run off. If you start to jog, the other team is going to score. The intensity is much different – it’s much more intense than both high school or AAU. It’s a higher intensity and much faster than I ever experienced,” Comella said.
As she enjoys her last few weeks at home, she will miss the friends she made at La Salle and is excited to get to work in Connecticut.
“I think I’m going to miss the little team bonding moments the most,” said Comella. “I know I will have that in college, but I am going to miss them with my team here.”