Starasts aims high for pro career
AFTER debuting at the age of 17 in the top basketball competition in Queensland, Warwick State High School student Declan Starasts is aiming to play the sport professionally.
Starasts has played three seasons for the Ipswich Force in the Queensland Basketball Junior Competition (under 18) before debuting for Ipswich in the Queensland Basketball League last month.
With 12 in the team and only five on court, Starasts received limited opportunities and rates his best effort as six points and five rebounds against Maroochydore in Ipswich.
“I didn’t expect to make it to the league this season but knew I was good enough,” Starasts said.
He is one of only two players under the age of 18 in the league, an indication his ambition to play professionally is not pie in the sky.
Next year, he hopes to secure a scholarship to play basketball in the American college competition.
He is unsure about other career options but lists a Bachelor of Business degree as one possibility.
“It is important to have a second career,” Starasts said.
Last weekend, he played his final game of the season for Ipswich as his side went down to a North Brisbane Wizards side which included Australian Boomers player Chris Goulding.
In a sport where height is important, Starasts was fifth tallest in his Ipswich league team.
“I have reached two metres in the past month and hope to grow a bit more,” he said.
“I want to make it to the NBL (Australian national competition) in three years.”
While his hopes to be playing college basketball next year, Starasts said if he got the chance to push towards a spot in a Boomers team for the Olympics, he would definitely take it.
In between his commitments with the Force and two or three trips a week to Ipswich, Starasts has continued to play in Warwick club basketball where he has a best of six three-pointers in a game.
On Saturday night, Starasts will play for Warwick Wildcats at WIRAC.