BELLAIRE - There are always adjustments when you take a new job or move onto something new in life.
However, few have probably had to learn an entirely new language when they took their first job out of college.
That's just one of the adjustments former Steubenville High and West Virginia University standout Liz Repella had to make as she transitioned from playing for the Lady Mountaineers to playing in Spain for Universitario team, which is based in Ferrol.
FORMER STEUBENVILLE Big Red girls’ basketball standout Liz Repella signs that back of Danielle Daugherty’s shirt following the St. John Central Basketball Camp Wednesday.
"The number one thing is I don't speak Spanish," Repella smiled. "Just communicating with other people was a huge adjustment."
The second biggest issue also had nothing to do with basketball or the style of play, which Repella said is much more finesse than played in the United States.
"Being thousands of miles away from my family was really hard," Repella said. "Home sickness got to be a factor. I don't think I ever really got over it, but I learned how to deal with it a little bit better, so that helped."
Having said all that, Repella told a gymnasium of some 90 youngsters at the annual St. John Central Irish Basketball Camp that it was an experience she'll forever remember.
And actually, it's an experience she's planning on doing all over again next season, but most likely for a new team in a new city and country.
"I don't know where I'll be because most are one-year contracts," Repella said. "I want to try something new in a different city and different team."
Repella has already been approached by a few teams in Europe, but she's yet to ink a deal because the best opportunity hasn't presented itself just yet.
"I am just kind of waiting," Repella said.
During the course of the season, Repella split time between two guard and point guard and averaged around 14 points and eight rebounds per game for a team that finished fifth in the league.
"It's a lot different game," Repella said. "On the court, the biggest adjustment was how I played. I was fouling all of the time early in the season."
As for her other former team, the Lady Mountaineers, Repella thinks the move to the Big 12 is a little bittersweet.
"It was sad to see the Big East split up because it was such a powerhouse basketball conference (for women and men)," Repella said. "Obviously moving to the Big 12 isn't that bad seeing that Baylor just went 39-0 or whatever they went. It's going to be a great conference to be in, but the travel is going to take a toll."
Along with working her own camp at Steubenville High School earlier this summer, Repella has visited Morgantown and the new WVU basketball facility, which has been labeled by many as the best basketball facility in the country.
"Oh my gosh, that place is just amazing," Repella said. "Everything in there is just top notch. I really wish they had that (building) when I was playing."
This was the second straight year Repella spoke to the campers at SJC.
"I was really thrilled and honored when Coach (Bubba) Kapral called me back again and asked me to speak," Repella said. "I love working with little kids and just spreading the word that people don't just wake up with success. You have to work hard to be successful."
Hopefully the campers paid attention because suffice to say, Repella knows what she's talking about.
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