Basketball: Eastern European players looking at schools make stop in Wilton

A group of girls basketball players from Eastern Europe, looking for a high school to attend in the United States for the 2018-19 school year, made Wilton one of their stops this past week.

The eight girls, ages 13 to 16, are among the top girl players in their countries. They arrived in town last Sunday night and were guests at Wilton High School through the school day on Monday.

“We wanted to show them what a great community Wilton is, both academically and athletically. We want them to want to attend Wilton High School. It’s really a community with lots of spirit and great schools,” said Sophia Kammerman, a WHS senior who was the driving force in bringing the girls to Wilton.

Five of the girls are from Poland and the other three from Lithuania.

“They all play on private club teams” in their home countries, Kammerman said. “The girls that stayed at my house mentioned that they did not have any girls sports teams at their high school.”

The visiting girls are part of the City Rocks New York AAU basketball program, based in Albany, N.Y. Kammerman learned about the program through her dad.

“I thought it would be great to introduce the girls to Wilton High School since they were visiting different high schools in the area,” she said.

The girls arrived Sunday night and everyone met at the Kammerman house, before splitting up among with several Wilton hosts — the Floyd, Sweeny, Reif and Cocoros families.

“The girls at my house played NBA 2K17 on my brother’s Xbox, which was fun for them since they enjoy basketball,” Kammerman said. “It was a great experience to meet high school students from other countries. While there were a lot of differences, there was also much we had in common.”

On Monday morning, Wilton High held a breakfast reception for the girls, where they were welcomed by school officials. Each player was assigned a Wilton student to be their ‘Ambassador for the Day’, and got to experienced that student’s school day and get a glimpse of what Wilton High had to offer.

On Monday night the girls scrimmaged on mixed teams with players from the WHS basketball team.

“From what I heard, everyone was really impressed with the European players,” said Kammerman, who couldn’t make the scrimmage as she plays on the WHS field hockey team and had practice.

While the two players who stayed with Kammerman have already made their choices — for high schools in Kansas and Albany, N.Y.  — it is possible that one of the eight girls may eventually choose to attend Wilton, she said.