Straight-shooter Bella LaChance wows on the court.
Named one the Sun Sentinel's "Fab Five" for the 2017-2018 preseason, sophomore Bella LaChance began playing basketball in the second grade in a Cooper City Optimist League. Bella said, "My earliest supporter was my mom. She has always been my number one fan and number one critic."
Maintaining a GPA of 4.7, Bella enrolled at STA because of the great environment, academics, athletics, and students. "My most surprising experience is how many amazing people I have met and become friends with who also play sports. Besides becoming very close with my team, I have also become close with many of the lacrosse girls as well."
Rating being a member of the Raider Basketball Team a 10 out of 10, Bella relies on one of her best friends, junior Alex Rizzi, for help on and off the court. "Whenever I have a bad game or am struggling with something, she always gives me the confidence to get through anything I need to." Bella trains with Randy Williams several times a week for strength, conditioning, shooting, dribbling, defense, rebounding, passing, and mental toughness. In addition to her Raider team, Bella plays for Team Larkins, an affiliate of the Miami Suns, a program in which she has participated since sixth grade.
In a hotly contested regional championship game against the Nova Titans, an eventual Class 8A State Finalist, Bella scored her 1,000 high school basketball point. Many of those points have come via free throws. This season, Bella has made 194 out of 224 attempts, an 87% percentage. Bella claims that "even though I am small, I am not afraid to drive in the paint and get fouled. I managed to become a high-percentage free-throw shooter from working on them in training and having confidence in my ability to shoot free throws." To make it more like a game situation, Williams has Bella shoot from the foul line when tired. Confidently, Bella maintains that "if you practice enough and believe it'll go in, it will."
Favoring the floater because defenders find it difficult to block, Bella "shoots this shot after someone sets me a screen up top, and then the lane is open. After the defender tries to step up, I just float the ball up in the air with a soft touch."
Anyone who has watched the varsity girls' team this year cannot help but wonder just how much more Bella LaChance can and will do on the court in two more years of playing the sport in high school. She owns an incredible work-ethic that serves her well as one of the elite players in Broward hoops.