Paquette ready for senior year after signing with Davidson

By Doug Gorman

Eagle's Landing High School senior Julia Paquette hasn't played in a high school basketball game in more than a year because of an injury, but that didn't keep college recruiters away.

Now, healthy and ready to return for her senior season with the Lady Golden Eagles, one thing Paquette won't have to worry about is where she is going to spend her next four years.

Friday afternoon, Paquette signed a letter of intent to attend Davidson College, a Division I school and member of the Southern Conference.

Paquette selected the North Carolina school for its strong academic reputation and it's emphasis on athletics.

“I loved the academics, and I went up there and really liked the atmosphere,” she said.

Paquette learned a little bit about the recruiting process from watching her brother Alex go through it last year. Alex spurned several college football scholarship offers in order study engineering at Georgia Tech. He also joined the Yellow Jackets' football team as a preferred walk-on. Although he is redshirted this season, he is expected to get playing time in the future on the defensive side of the football.

“I just told her to enjoy the process,” Alex said. “I'm proud of the way she bounced back from her injury.”

Although her high school career has been limited by the injury, Paquette attracted the attention of college scouts by playing on the Georgia Magic, an AAU team, which won a national title.

“I got to play against some of the best competition in the country,” she said.

For Dan Paquette, watching both of his children have the chance to trade athletics for a college education is a dream come true.

“I'm proud of them,” he said. “They have both worked hard, and it's not just high school, it's middle school also, and all the rec leagues too, it's great to see it come to fruition. A lot of college's really recruited Julia, but I think Davidson really worked the hardest. We went up there on her official visit, and that's when she committed. I'm really impressed with the academic atmosphere. She is playing in a good conference, and hopefully, she will have a chance to play in the NCAA playoffs. She's got some good basketball ahead of her.”

Eagle's Landing coach Lisa Horton is glad to have her senior back in the lineup.

“This is Julia's day,” Horton said. “I'm excited for her, and I am excited she's coming from this program. With her not playing last year, she's ready to get back on the court.”