Top girls' basketball scorer in York-Adams League makes her college decision

RYAN VANDERSLOOT
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Spring Grove High School girls' basketball standout Ella Kale has committed to Bloomsburg Unviersity.

It’s been a strange, yet successful year for Spring Grove girls’ basketball standout Ella Kale.

The Rocket senior dominated on the court during her final season. Kale was named by the coaches as the York-Adams League Division I Player of the Year after leading the league in scoring at 17.5 points per game.

Kale also helped the Rockets finish 21-3 and capture their first-ever District 3 title, while also helping Spring Grove advance to the PIAA 5-A state semifinals.

The only thing missing for Kale, who scored more than 1,000 points in her Rockets career, was a firm college decision.

Looking at mostly NCAA Division III schools, such as York College, Mary Washington and others, Kale was able to draw the attention of some bigger schools with her play on the court.

A coach for Bloomsburg University was originally on hand during the District 3 tournament to recruit a player from Lower Dauphin — a school the Rockets beat in the semifinal round.

Kale’s play in that game, in which she scored a game-high 23 points, became the genesis of her recruitment by Bloomsburg.

Just more than a month later, Kale officially committed to the PSAC program.

“I wasn’t really looking at them,” Kale said. “But they were at a game and they reached out and I just found out it was just a perfect match.”

COVID slowed the recruiting process: Recruiting in the COVID-19 era probably didn’t help Kale’s cause. She missed valuable time last summer when AAU ball was shut down until July, which set the decision process back a bit.

“My AAU coaches all said that junior season is when you get all of the attention and all of the college looks,” Kale said. “And I went in hoping to gain exposure, and while I had a lot of options, I think I could have had more.”

The Spring Grove guard, however, took full advantage of the visibility of her team’s performance this winter in high school to gain herself some much-deserved notice.

“When I looked into it, I just loved the coaching staff and the team and how I will fit into it,” she said. “They had everything that I looked for in a college and I just thought there was no better place for me.”

Giving credit to Sowers: Kale, who is used to giving assists out on the court as a guard, dished another one to her Spring Grove head coach, Troy Sowers, for making her recruitment process as easy as possible.

“He was just great,” Kale said. “He offered to send out a highlight package for me just to get my name out there. I just can’t thank him enough.”

Kale will join a Bloomsburg program that finished 2019-2020 season with a 14-14 record. One of the players on that team was Central York grad Emma Saxton, who led the team in scoring at 12.8 points per game during her junior season. She also averaged 4.2 points and 3.1 assists per game.

Reach Ryan Vandersloot at sports@yorkdispatch.com.