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Another West Virginia Native Moves South to Play at FGCU
8/27/2001

The first two basketball recruits in Florida Gulf Coast University’s history hailed from Parkersburg South High School in West Virginia. Now, a third member of that successful high school team has been reunited with his former teammates. Noah Sheppard, a 2001 PSHS graduate, has enrolled at FGCU.

Sheppard, a 6’6 forward, played with Ryan Hopkins and Bryan Crislip in high school when they were seniors and he was a junior. Never in his wildest dreams could he have imagined that all three would end up as roommates and members of FGCU’s first ever basketball team.

After the departure of his highly touted friends, Sheppard found the spotlight placed squarely upon him. He responded by averaging 12.6 points and 6.7 rebounds per game while leading his team to a 17-6 record.

Head Basketball Coach Dave Balza was ecstatic about bringing in another talented player from the Mountaineer state. “In 10 to 15 years,” quipped Balza, “I expect to look back and see what an impact these three young men will have made on the history of this basketball program. Noah is another fine athlete with very good ball skills for a guy his size. He is a terrific shooter who just seems to fit in so well with his two high school teammates. What is it that they say, ‘the whole is greater than the sum of the parts?’ That fits these three to a tee.”

Sheppard becomes the seventh recruit that Balza has brought in this summer. FGCU’s fifth school year gets under way today. Next year will mark the first season of competition for the basketball program.

For more information, contact Dave Balza at (941) 590-7039 or dbalza@fgcu.edu.

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