American pair complete Southern Hoiho’s import contingent

Two Americans with impressive pedigree have completed the Southern Hoiho import trio.

Shelby Cheslek and Laina Snyder have joined the team for this year’s Tauihi Basketball Aotearoa.

Both bring size to the roster, complementing Australian point guard Tori Dugan, who was announced as an import last week.

A 1.96m centre, Cheslek has spent time on the cusp of the WNBA with the Phoenix Mercury.

The 29-year-old from Pullman, Washington, has played in several leagues around the world, including in Australia.

Most recently she was in Turkey with Fenerbahce Gelisim, where she averaged 11.6 points, 11.7 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.9 blocks per game.

That followed an impressive college career in which Cheslek played for Gonzaga University, becoming the school’s all time leader in blocks and second on its all time rebounding list.

She is joined by fellow American Snyder.

A 1.83m forward, Snyder brings versatility to beat her opponents both inside and outside.

Snyder was a first-team All-American division two college player at Ashland College in her home state of Ohio.

She has since spent three seasons overseas in Australia, Germany and, most recently, Luxembourg.

While in Luxembourg she average 19.2 points per game on 53% shooting, alongside 12.0 rebounds.

The import trio join a useful local trio on the Hoiho roster.

Tall Fern Zoe Richards leads that unit, which also includes former Tall Ferns Samara Gallaher and Nicole Ruske.

Olivia O’Neill, Bronwyn Kjestrup and Aleisha Ruske make up the rest of the group.

The season begins on June 29, when the Hoiho faces the Mainland Pouakai in Christchurch.

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