Ballarat Rush has retained star import Joy Burke for a third South East Australian Basketball League season.
Burke accepted the optional season, which was outlined in last year’s contract.
Burke was an integral part of Rush’s make-up last season, averaging a double-double for the season with 14.1 points and 11.8 rebounds per game.
Newly-appointed Rush coach Eric Hayes was stoked to keep one of their most important players on the roster.
“I am extremely happy that Joy has re-signed with the Rush for season 2018,” Hayes said.
“Joy is a very strong weapon for our team as she does a great job offensively providing a consistent target inside. She is one of the leading rebounders in the competition and defensively she alters so many shots.
I am so excited Coach Eric Hayes was appointed as the Rush head coach...I have a tremendous amount of respect for him.Returning import Joy Burke
“She is a great teammate and leader in the group by example and verbally gives feedback to players.”
Burke was excited to return for another season at Rush, but even more excited about playing under the tutelage of Hayes.
Burke has a lot of respect for the decorated figure and was looking forward to tapping into his knowledge of the game.
“I am so excited Eric Hayes was appointed as the Rush head coach for this upcoming season.
“I have a tremendous amount of respect for him due to his incredible passion and knowledge of the game that has developed over the countless years he has given to the game of basketball.”
“Throughout the success of the Miners’ program last season, he was always the Rush’s biggest fan, not only would he always cheer the loudest at our games.
“I remember him sacrificing his rare evenings off to come watch Rush training sessions and always willing to offer encouragement.”
Burke also represented Chinese Taipei in the FIBA Asia Women’s Cup this year and is spending the summer at Arizona State University as an interpreter for college programs for coaches from China to learn from the American coaches.
Burke will return to Ballarat in January.