Just in time for the holidays, the California Interscholastic Federation Southern Section showed a rare flash of good cheer, officially clearing Nirra Fields to compete for national power Santa Ana (Calif.) Mater Dei High.
Fields' official clearance comes less than a month after the Southern Section ruled that the Canadian star would not be allowed to compete for Mater Dei, which she is attending while living with new Los Angeles Lakers coach Mike Brown. In fact, Brown's family was unintentionally at the root of Fields' eligibility issues, with the Southern Section ruling that the star guard had not made a legitimate transfer from Oak Hill (Va.) Academy.
According to the Los Angeles Times, that all changed when the Monarchs' star was granted a hardship waiver to such transfer regulations. The change of policy came just in time for Fields to suit up for the Monarchs at the prestigious Nike Tournament of Champions in Arizona.
Almost immediately, Fields had a huge impact. The star scored a whopping 29 points in her team's 60-47 win against Buford (Ga.) High, making the team's early battles without her seem like distant memories.
"She's just a natural scorer," Mater Dei coach Kevin Kiernan told ESPN HoopGurlz of Fields' debut. "If she took a year off and met you at the gym one day, she'd still be able to score. She's so hard to guard. It's like she's on skates out there."
The rest, as they say, will become history. And for Fields, any other Christmas gifts that come her way at the Brown's house on December 25 will just be a bonus.
- Sports & Recreation