Evans works her way along recruiting trail


Correspondent Barely unpacked in her return from an AAU excursion to Las Vegas with the Philly Belles that won a junior national tournament showcase, Jackson Memorial High School basketball standout Christa Evans stayed on the move.

The Jaguars’ 6-3 center was helping her high school coach, Rachel Goodale, run a summer basketball camp at Jackson Memorial and would rejoin her high school teammates playing in the Belmar Summer League.

“I think I had a good series of games in Las Vegas,” Evans said. “I feel I’m improving game by game. I’m running the court better. My quickness is better. I’m rebounding better and getting stronger.”

She also would continue sifting through her mail from NCAA Division I basketball recruiters from coast to coast that Evans says ranges from Florida to Maine to California and Kentucky. And there is the Princeton team camp that Jackson Memorial’s girls will attend Aug. 7-9, as well as workouts in the gym two days a week as the Jaguars prepare to encore a 23-4 season that included an unbeaten run in the Shore Conference A South Division.

“I want to take my [college] visits in August, so I’ll be planning them in these upcoming weeks,” said Evans, who also still has AAU basketball showcases left in July in Washington, D.C., on July 22 and Augusta, S.C., four days later. She has also played in showcases this spring and summer in Hampton, Va., Dallas and Los Angeles.

“The recruiting is not that bad, and actually it has gotten easier as it all becomes clear. I’m getting there. By the end of August, I want to get it down to the top five

schools],” she said.

To some people, it may seem odd for a major college recruit to want to visit virtually empty college campuses before most of the enrolled students and many of the athletes are there.

“I’d rather look at a campus where there are not as many students to see what it’s really like,” Evans said.

She wants to decide on her college destination before the start of her senior basketball season. In fact, the sooner the better, because Evans will also play volleyball again this fall.

As for basketball, she said, “We’re doing really well and coming together and learning to play with new guards.”

The Jaguars graduated Caitlyn Testa and Dana Costello from last year’s backcourt.

Evans said she has worked out for volleyball on her own, jumping rope and hitting the ball against the wall and working out with her younger sister, Shannon, who will be a junior this fall, and who also plays both sports at Jackson Memorial.

“She’s great to work out with,” said Christa. “In volleyball, we could have been stronger at the end. We played hard, but hopefully we won’t have as many injuries. We lost three players, but we should be pretty strong.”

As far as her summer vacation goes, Evans agrees it has been all timetables and not much relaxation.

“I haven’t had much free time,” the Jaguars’ rising senior said with a laugh.