Perry Lakes star Purser may quit NCAA

Total Connections Perry Lakes Hawks star Ben Purser says he's unlikely to play with Augusta State University for another NCAA season.

Purser played for the Division Two Georgia-based college last season and it has helped propel him to an impressive men's State Basketball League season.

The 21-year-old forward has averaged 16.9 points and 8.4 rebounds per game for the Hawks this season and scored a season-high 28 points against Geraldton on Sunday.

While Purser said he enjoyed his time with the Jaguars, he said it may be better for him to stay in Perth.

"It's something I have to weigh up," he told SBL Radio on SportFM 91.3.

"At this stage it looks like I might be staying, just because academically my units that I've started back here don't match up. I think, just looking at a number of factors, that I may be staying.

"I did have a good season there though and either way, it wouldn't be bad for my basketball."

If the SBL's 2009 Best Defensive Player decides not to return to ASU, it could open the door for him to earn one with the Perth Wildcats' development player spots.

"I'd love to do that, it would be a fantastic opportunity," Purser said. "Over the summer, once the SBL finishes, there's really not a lot of basketball that you can do unless you're with the Wildcats.

"I'd love the chance to work out with some of those guys if I stay here. Otherwise I'll keep working on my game and try to improve.

"I think I need to work on a few aspects of my game. My shooting consistency is not what I want it to be right now, especially when you compare it to a lot of those NBL guys."

And Perth Wildcats assistant coach Shawn Dennis said Purser would definitely come into NBL consideration if he chose to stay home.

"He's a young man who has come back from college and put his hand up and said 'hey, take a look at me'. And he's certainly a player we're very interested to look at and see where it goes," Dennis told SBL Radio.

"The young bloke plays his heart out and I love the way he defends. I think he's a tremendous defender.

"Certainly in our system, that's something that is a pre-requisite. That will really help him because of the way we play the game.

"He needs to improve his offense, but he works so hard and they're the type of people you want around your program."

Meanwhile, Purser suffered a broken finger in last Saturday's loss to Perth, but said he would play through the pain as Perry Lakes tries to consolidate its top four spot with wins against Rockingham and Willetton in round 18.

Article by Jacob Kagi
Photo by Darren Speedie (Vision Inspired Photography)

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