RCS Senior Lauren Sanderson playing during 2019-20 season.

In early February, RCS Senior Lauren Sanderson committed to play basketball at Sage College of Albany. As part of her college selection process, Ms. Sanderson was also recruited by The State University of New York College at Cortland, Clarkson University and Alfred University. She will play shooting guard for the NCAA Division III Empire 8 Conference program beginning next year.

“I’m excited to continue my athletic career closer to home with family and friends able to see me play,” said Ms. Sanderson. “I’m thankful for the opportunity to compete, both academically and athletically, at the Sage College of Albany. My parents and Coach Shortell played an important role in my success and offered important feedback during this decision-making process. I’m excited to see what the future holds for me.”

Prior to the pandemic, during the 2019-20 season, Sanderson was selected as a first team Colonial Council All-Star. During that season, she averaged a team high 16.1 points per game on her way to guiding the 16-4 RCS women’s basketball team to sectional playoffs.

“The best compliment for a player is when opposing coaches ask me when they are going to graduate. This is the case with Lauren. They cringe when I say she is back again this year,” said RCS Women’s Basketball Coach Kiley Shortell. “She is a pure, left-handed, shooter and when teams leave her open, she makes them pay. Lauren is also a tremendous leader, competitor, and role model for the younger players in our program. This year was a crazy one, but I am excited for her and our team to be able to play in some capacity. Lauren will be a great addition to the Sage College of Albany women's basketball team. I look forward to being able to watch her play in the future at Sage."

Ms. Sanderson is looking to pursue a degree in criminal justice and psychology while attending Sage College of Albany.

Learn more about her in today’s Q&A:

COVID-19 altered the school district’s approach to academics and athletics this year. How did it impact your role in selecting a college during your senior year?

COVID-19 really disrupted my senior year at RCS, but it didn't impact my decision to go to Sage College of Albany. After visiting the campus and speaking with faculty and staff, my parents and I felt Sage was a good fit for me, both academically and athletically. Sage is small enough to provide support with my studies, while still experiencing the college atmosphere. In addition, I was able to watch one of the women's basketball practices and I feel that I can contribute to their continued success. 

How did you direct your attention to athletics and academics during the past year? Develop any new strategies for training/studying?

Remote learning was helpful to me in that I could set my own pace. If something confused me, I would revisit the topic. My teachers were always available to answer any questions that I was having related to my class work. As for training, my mom would constantly encourage physical activity every day. We were both hoping to have some type of season and wanted to be ready when that occurred. 

How did athletics play a role in your time at RCS? What will you miss the most?

In order to participate in RCS athletics, I had to maintain a certain grade point average. Playing was very important to me, so you can say athletics allowed me to be successful academically. What I will miss the most is the bond that I have with my teammates and coaches. I am very competitive, so I look forward to competing at Sage.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

Hopefully, in five years, I will have completed my degree and have secured a job in an area that I enjoy. I'm not sure yet where that will be, but my opportunities are endless.