MELBOURNE has added a further member to its AFLW squad, signing Eliza West as a rookie for the 2021/22 season.

An elite basketballer, West joins the Demons in the midst of an impressive first season of footy with Casey, where she has averaged 22 disposals and five tackles from 10 games.

With an extensive sporting background, including experience in the US College system, the 24-year-old is expected to develop as an inside midfielder and bring some further depth to the group.

“Eliza is an elite athlete who is strongly built, super competitive and has quickly adapted to our game,” AFLW list manager Todd Patterson said.

“She will ply her trade as an inside mid for us but has also shown she can impact forward, both through pressure and goal scoring.”

Standing at 162cm tall, West began playing college basketball for Utah State in 2016, where she received various honours including Mountain West Freshman of the Year (2017), and ranked first in career assists (457).

She finished up her college career at Southwestern University and has continued playing back home, currently representing Knox in the NBL1.

“What Eliza achieved in her college career was quite remarkable given her size,” Patterson said.

“She competed against some of the best players in the world, including Sabrina Ionescu, and we think this experience is going to hold her in really good stead.

We would consider Eliza to be one of the best unlisted talents in the VFLW so to be able to sign her as a rookie is a fantastic result.

“Her progression is a real credit not only to her commitment but also to the staff and her teammates at Casey, who have pushed each other through the season.

The Demons now have 27 players on their list, having welcomed Olivia Purcell and Tayla Harris during the Sign and Trade Period, and a core group of players committing for next season.