SOUDERTON STANDOUT PICARD TO PLAY MEN'S BASKETBALL AT GOLDEY-BEACOM
Courtesy of Eric Zedalis, Goldey-Beacom SID
PIKE CREEK, Del. - Goldey-Beacom College men's basketball head
coach Chuck Hammond announced that the 2010 Suburban One League
Continental Conference Player of the Year A.J. Picard has committed
to Goldey-Beacom College.
Picard (pronounced "Peh-Card"), a 6-1 point guard who starred at Souderton Area High School (Pa.) for three seasons, will join a GBC squad that returns 12 players from last year's team which reached the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference finals and set a school record for wins in a season with 19.
"We are very excited to welcome A.J. to our program," Hammond said. "We know we are getting a special player who will only continue to get better through all his hard work and dedication to the game."
In his senior season, Picard scored a team and conference-high 18.9 points per game as Souderton won a school-record 23 games en-route to a SOL Continental title and a berth in the District 1 Class 4A semifinals and the PIAA Tournament.
He earned a spot on the Associated Press State Class 4A Third Team and was also chosen to the SOL Continental First Team for the second straight season. For his career, Picard was the sixth Souderton player to reach 1,000 points, finishing with 1,179.
Picard was also honored by Souderton at its Class of 2010 Senior Awards Ceremony, receiving the Dal Smoot Award (athlete who displays character on and off the court) and the Billy Vanderbeek Award (student respected by his or her peers for enthusiasm and love of life).
In a statement to The Reporter Online, Picard said he is thankful that Hammond and the college believe in him.
"I look at it as four more years to get better," Picard said. "They push you more, and all the players are amazing. It's going to be a great experience and hopefully I can play after my college career, too."
Picard is aiming for a career in athletics off the court as well, as he has chosen to major in Sports Management.
"While recruiting A.J., so many people had so many positive things to say about him as a player and a person, and to me, that is extremely important," Hammond said. "I am looking forward to see A.J. build off all his success from his playing career at Souderton HS and continue it at Goldey-Beacom College."
At Goldey-Beacom, Picard will join a talented Lightning team that includes returnees such as last year's leading rebounder Terrence Parkes (8.2 rpg), guard/forward Sam McDuffie, who averaged 14.2 points per-game, and sharp-shooting point guard Azeez Ellegood (49-percent three-point shooter and 82.7-percent free-throw shooter). Last year, GBC was just one win shy of the school's first-ever NCAA Tournament bid.