By ALEX SPONSELLER
Johnston senior basketball player Tori Viau recently made her college decision official as she committed to continuing her career at Dean College.
Viau was the Panthers’ top scorer this past winter season and was one of the best shooters in the state during her time in Johnston. She is excited to commit to another four years of playing the game she loves.
“I’m so excited, it’s definitely a big step. I always wanted to compete at the next level. I love playing the sport so to know that I have another four years to play, it is exciting. It’s exciting to continue to learn and grow,” said Viau.
Between the small campus at Dean and her quick rapport with coach Alycia Gervais, Viau was sold on the prospect of joining the Bulldogs.
“It was kind of difficult (being recruited during the pandemic). I applied to some schools and Dean wasn’t at the top. Some coaches reached out to me from schools that I didn’t apply to. But this coach texted me asking for film, then after we met up, I decided that that is where I wanted to go. It was a great atmosphere. I found that I liked the smaller campuses rather than the big universities … where you’re not just a number and it’s more like family. Once I met the coach, it cemented my decision to go there,” said Viau.
As she gets prepared for the next level, Viau is expecting tougher competition all around especially considering Dean is changing conferences next winter.
“They didn’t have a season this year so I haven’t been able to meet the team, only the coaches so far. My focus is just staying in shape knowing that I will have to put in more work than I usually do going to a bigger and better conference. It’s going to be competitive. I competed in Division I, but at Dean, they’re moving up a conference which will be different from what I’ve seen,” said Viau.
Viau will also miss the Johnston basketball community and hopes to join another tight-knit group at Dean.
“I’ve played with these people since middle school and my rec days, so it will be hard saying bye to my friends and teammates,” Viau said. “The coaches and I have a strong bond, so it will be hard to see different coaching techniques. I’m just hoping that the team I’m going to will have a great bond and will build chemistry as we go.”