US NCAA-bound Ella Fajardo reminisces pandemic-hit senior year in high school

Luisa Morales (Philstar.com) - April 15, 2021 - 5:29pm

MANILA, Philippines — It may not have been the most ideal of situations, but US NCAA-bound women's basketball player Ella Fajardo made the most out of her senior year in high school.

Fajardo's final year at Gil St. Bernard High School was greatly affected by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, as it was all around the globe during the health crisis.

But the Fairleigh Dickinson University commit looked at the bright side of things, with her team still being able to play a handful of games in a condensed season.

Knowing that it was not an opporunity given to everyone, Fajardo expressed her gratitude at having gotten the chance to play out her last year.

"I'm thankful that we had games, I had a lot of friends especially in New York who did not get to play their senior year at all," Fajardo said during the pilot episode of Philstar.com's Home Base.

"Senior year is supposed to be the best year, the year that you're supposed to be having the most fun," she continued.

The Gilas Pilipinas women mainstay looked back fondly on her experience, which, while shortlived, filled her with motivation going into her next chapter in basketball.

"Even with the given circumstances, like only having less than 15 games I thought I had a lot of fun," said Fajardo.

"Especially with the freshman coming up, they were really nice. They were buying into the system that we had and I guess knowing that I was committed, that this was my last year I just had so much fun in general," she added.

Though missing out on a proper senior year send-off at Gil St. Bernard because of the pandemic, Fajardo felt nothing but gratitude and wouldn't trade the experience for anything else.

"We won a lot of games [and] shocked a lot of people, I wouldn't have had it any other way," she said.

Fajardo is set to suit up for the FDU Knights as a freshman in the latter part of this year where she will compete in the Northeast Conference of Division I in the US NCAA.

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