IRVINGTON, N.Y. ? Irvington High School basketball stars Brittni Lai and Alexis Martins have made commitments to attend Division I colleges and will sign letters of intent Monday at 6 p.m. at the high school.
Lai, a point guard, will attend Marist College in Poughkeepsie, and Martins, a power forward, is heading to Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pa. The duo have been members of three straight Class B state and federation championship teams under longtime Bulldogs coach Gina Maher. Both will accept full athletic scholarships.
“Every time I went up to visit Marist I fell more and more in love with it,” said Lai. “Marist has a great basketball program and great coaching staff. I see myself fitting in with the girls on the team, and it’s a good academic fit, too.”
Martins said she anticipates a great career at Lehigh.
“I love it,” Martins said of Lehigh. “I can’t wait to be there. Lehigh offered the best mix of academics and great basketball.”
Lai, who moved to Irvington three years ago, said leaving will be bittersweet.
“I’ll miss the small community," she said. "College will be different, but I am looking forward to it.”
Martins, a lifelong resident of the village and a student in the local schools since kindergarten, expressed her love of the community.
“I’ll be sad leaving," Martins said. "This is where I grew up. It’s weird to think that next year I’ll be with a whole new set of people, but it was great to grow up in this environment.”
Maher spoke about her players' dedication and commitment to their studies and the sport.
“These two student athletes have worked extremely hard and have given enormous amounts of their time to the reach this level,” Maher said.
“They have also worked hard in the classroom, and as a result they have been New York State Scholar Athletes for the last two years. They are exceptional young women who have shown commitment and dedication not only to their team but also to the school community."
Irvington's director of athletics, Arthur McCormack, said, "This is a great honor for the players, coaches and entire school community.”