If Alyssa Lang appears not the least bit apprehensive about leaving home to go to a school where she will be a complete stranger, there is reason for that:
Been there. Done that.
After transferring from Fairfield before her senior season, she has already gone through a similar acclimation, one that should make the transition to the University of Charleston, W.V. even easier.
Wednesday, the Lady Aces senior signed a national letter of intent to play next for the Division II Golden Eagles.
“She has already kind of gone through her freshman year of college last year,” said Lady Aces coach Tim Willis. “She came to a new program, a new system, having to fit in with new kids. So, she’s already had that kind of freshman initiation.”
That learning curve began last year when Lang admitted she was “so nervous” about heading east to Mt. Carmel. “Being a new kid as a senior, you don’t know if people are going to like you.”
Things worked out well as the results might indicate. Lang quickly became a regular starter, averaging almost 10 points per game for the a third-ranked Lady Aces team which finished 32-1 after a first-ever perfect regular season of 29-0.
Lang wasn’t headed to Charleston initially. She had first committed to play next year at Division I Coastal Carolina, but then things changed.
“I was going to Coastal, but the coach there retired,” Lang said. “I started looking at other options.”
As Charleston began to enter the picture, Lang learned that Nichole Perry of N. Posey, a teammate of Lang’s on her Indiana Elite summer team, was a sophomore member of the Golden Eagles, making her deicision easier.
Charleston was 16-14 last year for coach Adam Collins, who is only losing two seniors. The Golden Eagles were 11-11 in the West Virginia Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
“They needed a guard,” said Lang of a spot she has played and can play. “They like to have three good players at each position they have.”
Willis said Lang and Charleston “are a good fit” because “they play an up tempo style like we play at Mt. Carmel. It will help her fit in easily.”
Lang’s Indiana Elite coach Phil Kessler, helped her in making the decision to forgo Coastal. The coaching change there “was kind of late for a Division I school. I felt them out to see where they were, but (Lang playing) was not a guarantee. We didn’t feel comfortable waiting until July or August because college opportunities would disappear.”
Lang finished her prep career with over 1,000 points, crossing the milestone early in the season at the Hilltop.