Last Thursday, two days shy of her 17th birthday, Maren Louridas headed from Delmar to the United States Naval Academy.
By the time she was heading back home from her visit to the school with her mother Jaime and father Aaron, Louridas had committed to play her college basketball at Navy.
“That was the first time I’d been to Annapolis,” Louridas said of the school’s Maryland-based campus. “I couldn’t believe it all. It was so incredible.”
A 6-foot-0 rising senior at Bethlehem High School, Louridas spent a little more than a year in communication with Navy women’s basketball head coach Tim Taylor and his coaching staff prior to offering last week’s verbal commitment. A varsity player since her freshman year and a member of the Albany City Rocks AAU program, Louridas announced publicly Monday with a social-media post that she had committed to Navy.
“It’s been a long time coming,” Louridas said. “We’ve built up such a great relationship between me and the coaches there, and I’ve always felt super comfortable with them. They’re very dynamic people.”
Once on campus at the service academy, Louridas said it didn’t take long for her to make up her mind to finish her recruitment process.
“I fell in love with it,” Louridas said. “It was amazing. I was blown away.”
As a junior at Bethlehem playing for coach Kim Wise, Louridas was a third-team Suburban Council all-league selection. Louridas played her summer’s AAU basketball for coach Tom Huerter, the former Siena men’s basketball standout whose son Kevin Huerter is coming off a strong playoff run with the NBA’s Atlanta Hawks.
Navy finished 5-7 overall last season, and had a 5-3 mark in Division I Patriot League competition.
Off the court, Louridas said she’s interested in potentially studying computer science. Besides Navy, Louridas said she received interest from a variety of schools with the common theme of strong academics. Louridas said she received an offer from Army and had interest from multiple Ivy League schools, but also said she considered Division II and III options.
“The level wasn’t as important to me; it was about the school,” Louridas said. “The opportunity at Navy is unbeatable.”