News & Events
Lance Kearse '12 Signs Professional Basketball Contract in Spain
By Ben Schlesselman, Sports Information Director
Originally posted on Eckerd Tritons website
Former Eckerd College men's basketball standout Lance Kearse '12 is headed overseas to begin his professional career after inking a one-year contract with Iraugi Saski Baloia Club in Azpeitia, Spain.
Kearse left the country last week for the transatlantic flight to begin a new adventure with the sport he has poured his heart and soul into.
"I feel like I'll approach this situation with the same passion as college, high school or even Little League," Kearse said. "I'm ready to go over there and try to prove myself. This year dictates my future in professional basketball."
"I'm very excited, but I'm here to do work," he said as his countenance shifted.
Kearse will compete for a franchise in the LEB Adecco Silver League, a third division league in Spain.
As a result of an unpaid short stint in the Cayman Islands, Kearse says there is an adjustment phase to the international game, but in the end, it's just basketball.
With the new territory comes learning a different culture and trying different foods. Kearse says he knows 'un pequito' of the Spanish language (translated to a little), but playfully would not divulge any other evidence of his fluency.
At Eckerd (2010-12), Kearse flourished in his career with the Tritons under the counsel of Head Coach Tom Ryan, culminating with Sunshine State Conference Player of the Year honors after his senior campaign.
Kearse continues a strong tradition of former Eckerd basketball players in the professional ranks, joining Dale Carn '11 (Chile), Zaronn Cann '10 (Chile), Anthony Washington '05 (Philippines), Per Hultman-Boye '05 (Sweden), Jonas Wernquist '05 (Sweden) and on the women's side, Kati Rausberg '12 (Belarus).
The Fort Myers product and transfer from Virginia Commonwealth University earned additional honors as a Division II Bulletin All-American, NABC First-Team All-South Region pick and playing in the Reese's East vs. West All-Star Game.
He averaged a team-high 16.2 points per game along with 6.0 rebounds while starting all 30 games possible in 2011-12.
Kearse is widely known for his triumph over sickle cell trait and with the help of Eckerd support staff and coaches, they have educated many and increased awareness on a mysterious topic.
"I just want to say a sincere thanks to the coaches and my teammates -- I wouldn't be here if it wasn't for them," he said.
Kearse has agreed to provide updates to EckerdTritons.com as the season progresses. Stay tuned throughout the year for additional information.