Pittsburgh pg 7 10-14-21

Category: News

Paris Kirk grew up in Kelowna, British Columbia, a city of roughly 223,000 that’s nestled into the scenic parks, pine forests, vineyards, orchards, and mountains in Canada’s westernmost province.
And when she walked around the campus of Robert Morris University in Pittsburgh, a few weeks ago, it brought her back across 2,400 miles and national border.
“It’s right by Pittsburgh and West Virginia, so it’s got the balance of nature and city,” Kirk said. “I really like being in the outdoors, and on campus, you see the green hills everywhere and there is a lake nearby.”
Factor in the balance between academics and basketball to go along with the lifestyle, and Kirk, a senior on Putnam Science Academy’s girls’ Prep team, had found her next home. She announced her commitment to the Colonials late last week.
“It just really hit all the boxes,” she said. “I think I want to get into nursing but now that I’ve done this part and committed, I can really spend some time reflecting on that next piece. There are plenty of options for me there and high academic standards.
“And it’s got high-level basketball and the coaching staff is going to help me develop for my future goals as well, which is maybe play overseas or even the WNBA. I think I can go in and make an impact right away. It felt like it was the right place, so why wait? I didn’t want to seem like I wasn’t interested in them by waiting and seeing what other options I could also have. It’s the right place for me.”
One can expect Kirk, who has three older sisters but she is the only one who got into sports. to have a big impact on the Mustangs when they open their season in a few weeks. At 6-foot-1 she has good size to work in the post and be an imposing rebounder. But she also likes to – and can – shoot it from 3. Coach Devin Hill has liked what he’s seen so far in the preseason.
“She gives us some different things that we haven’t had in the past as far as her versatility goes,” he said. “But the thing about her…when people talk about Division I players, they talk about the talent, which is understandable. But when they have to run or do some type of small punishment, Paris will never complain, and she’s usually first or second.  “So she does stuff like that, where it’s like…professional. She’s going to do all the right things, she’s not going to cause any problems. Robert Morris is a great fit for her. Great fit.” The Colonials, who play in the Horizon League and is coached by Charlie Buscaglia, struggled last year to a 4-13 record but had won 20-plus games in each of the previous five seasons. They started recruiting Kirk over the summer. And now that she has committed, Kirk said, “It’s definitely relief and excitement. After going through the process for a long time, there is a lot of effort that goes into it, so just to know that you’re happy with where you’re going is really nice.”
By Stephen Nalbandian
Sports Information Director
Putnam Science Academy