Top NI sportswomen to combine studying and sport after securing United States scholarships

The end of August means back to school for most teenagers but for some, opportunities arise to travel the world to do what they love.

Two of our top performing sports women are off to the US to combine studying and sport.

18-year-old Beth Coulter has grown up playing at Kirkistown Golf Club ever since former head pro there Neil Graham visited her primary school to encourage girls to take up golf.

Now she's off to Arizona State University on a golf scholarship,  the same place our latest golfer who turned pro, Olivia Mehaffey, studied.

19-year-old Erin Maguire has been playing basketball for as long as she can remember, the County Antrim woman has been representing Ulster University Tigers and Ireland under 20s but is now moving to Houston HBU in Texas to take part in a scholarship programme where she will meet up with her sister.

And for those who don't want to pack up their bags there are options closer to home.

Just like her Irish U20 team mate, Abigail Rafferty has been accepted onto an elite performance basketball scholarship - but she'll be based at Ulster University.

They all have one goal in mind - to turn professional in their chosen sports.

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