ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Recruiting at the college level can be a challenge. The UAlbany women have taken things international, building themselves a pipeline directly to Sweden.
The Great Danes already had two returners from Stockholm: junior Helene Haegerstrand and senior Ellen Hahne. Now, they’ve recruited another Swede: Freshman Freja Werth.
Werth says Helene and Ellen were a big reason why she came to Albany, and they’ve been very helpful in what’s been a huge adjustment. “It’s so nice to have them and they are really helping me, just with like small stuff,” said Freja. “We talk Swedish sometimes and they can explain things I don’t know, so it’s been so, so nice to have them here.”
Haegerstrand knows the challenges Freja is facing. “Seeing her going through it now, I’m getting reminded myself of how it was and it’s definitely different,” Haegerstrand said. “It helps her out to see us. We’ve been doing the same thing and we’re at the place we are and we enjoy everything. Every day is like a new day and she’s getting more and more comfortable.”
Hahne says the three have bonded through similar experiences. “Coach said coming in we’re going to be the three swedes,” said Hahne. “We have to bring her along on whatever me and Helene started to build last year. We haven’t really played together. Me and Freja went to the same high school, we played the same style of basketball. That connection is very good for us and we need to keep building on that.”
The three Swedes will help the Great Danes tip things off November 10th against Hofstra.