It quickly dawned on Eliza Perkins that living in Sydney required her owning a car. The 18-year-old St Mary's College alumnus moved there last year to pursue her dream of reaching the upper echelons of netball. She has long been motoring in a lane heading in that direction; now she has sped up.
On Tuesday night, Perkins' GWS Fury won Netball NSW's Premier League under-23 grand final after beating the Manly Warringah Sapphires 60-52 at Netball Central, Sydney Olympic Park.
The biggest moment of her career had a profound impact on her. It "100 per cent" has made her even more determined to reach the top: Super Netball.
"It was incredible," she said. "Like, the atmosphere was something [else]. Like, I've never experienced anything like that before."
Getting a "tiny taste" of what it would be like playing at the elite level "felt so much more professional than anything I've done before".
"I can't even imagine what it would be like to go on to those bigger things, go on to those bigger teams and competitions."
Perkins, a goal attack, played all four quarters of the grand final. She was not expecting that to happen, describing the experience as "pretty exciting", "pretty scary", "amazing" and "crazy".
"The whole atmosphere, the whole lead up to it [the finale] - the training, everything - was, like, incredible. And it was so intense, but it was really good; it's been a great season."
Perkins was "very nervous" pre-match, but settled and was pleased with her performance. "The coach was happy, so I was happy."
It was her first season in the Premier League under-23 competition. The NIAS product moved to Sydney this year to play in it. She lives in Parramatta, where she works in a gym.
The teen has a "roommate", and trains "three or four" times a week with the Fury. "It's been really good. My team's been great: they've really been helpful. And I've got a lot of family in Sydney ... that have helped out as well. It's been really good."
Perkins wants to play another under-23 season before moving up to the NSW Premier League's open division. The next level after that is the Australian Netball League, a feeder competition for Super Netball.
For now, though, she wants to continue "proving herself" and "getting my name out there", after a season of "massive" progression for her.
"I have felt myself develop so much as a player. Like, the things I've learnt, on and off the court ... I'm thinking so much more about what I'm doing on the court."