Former Gonzaga guard Emma Stach signs professional contract in Germany

Gonzaga guard Emma Stach (14) steals the ball from Stanford guard Brittany McPhee (12) during the first period of a first-round game in the NCAA women's college basketball tournament in Palo Alto, Calif. Saturday, March. 17, 2018. (Colin Mulvany / The Spokesman-Review)

Emma Stach is back where she began, but richer for the experience of four years at Gonzaga.

A fixture for the Zags, the high-energy guard is home in Germany, where she recently signed a professional contract in the top-flight women’s league.

“After these four years here at Gonzaga, I really wanted to play in Europe again,” said Stach, who will play for the Rutronik Stars Keltern in the southwestern German city of Remchingen.

“I made the decision to start my professional basketball career in Germany, because I liked the leadership of the head coach, the professionalism of Rutronik Stars Keltern, and the fact that I’m close to home,” she said.

Stach is one of at least a dozen former GU players in foreign leagues around the world. Several play in Germany, including Stach’s former teammates Chelsea Waters and Shaniqua Nilles.

Stach will also begin training with the German Senior National Team in August as they prepare for qualification games for the 2019 FIBA EuroBasket Championship.

Former Zag Sunny Greinacher is also on the team. The qualification games begin in November.

“We are very excited for Emma, she is such a steady and consistent player,“ Gonzaga head coach Lisa Fortier said. “Emma has a very high basketball IQ and her skill set is going to serve her well.”

Stach finished sixth all-time with 141 made 3-pointers at Gonzaga and often was assigned to shut down opponents’ top scorers.

She also ranks 10th all-time in free throw percentage at 79.2 percent and games played at 131, including 94 starts.