Ripon College graduate Ty Sabin brings the ball up the court for the Wetterbyden Stars in Sweden.
Ripon College graduate Ty Sabin brings the ball up the court for the Wetterbyden Stars in Sweden.

   Two area basketball players who were playing overseas have returned home safely amid the COVID-19 outbreak.

   Ripon High School graduate Taylor Wurtz and Ripon College graduate Ty Sabin arrived back to the United States last week after an initial scare that they would be stuck in Europe.

   Wurtz was playing for Landerneau Bretagne in France, while Sabin was competing for the Wetterbyden Stars in Huskvarna, Sweden. Both seasons were nearing their end.

   “My main concern in Sweden was whether or not I would be able to come home,” said Sabin, who is Ripon College’s all-time leading scorer. “It seemed like everyday when waking up there was some new news and new restrictions in terms of traveling bans. At first, they were banning flights from Europe to [the] United States with the exception being London. Then the next day they announced London flights will be banned too. When I first read that, I got extremely nervous. But after reading up on it, the ban was to start [last week] Monday night and my flights were scheduled for Monday morning, so I snuck out right in time.”

   He noted “the trip back was definitely more difficult to book than usual” and “the only option available at that time to come into the United States was through the UK.” So Sabin flew from Sweden to London and then to Chicago.

  Wurtz, who was hit a lot harder by the COVID-19 outbreak in France as the country is under lockdown for 45 days, added she too “was a little intimidated by possibly being stuck in France after she heard about the lockdown.”

  She, however, was able to book a flight from Paris to Chicago last week Thursday and made it back home. She noted President Donald Trump’s travel ban that he put in place from Europe didn’t apply to U.S. citizens.

Read the full story, which includes their thoughts on their seasons being cut short, as well as their plans now that they are back in the United States, in the March 26, 2020 edition of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.