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USC Salk Signs Higgins out of the Gold Coast.

WALTERBORO, S.C. – Versatile wing Nevarda Higgins from Gold Coast, Queensland in Australia has signed a letter of intent with Coach Lynch and the USC Salkehatchie men's basketball program.

Higgins, a 6-foot, 8-inch, 180-pound wing, competed on the Under 20 National Team for Queensland in Australia, which finished fourth nationally. Throughout the tournament Higgins averaged 10 points and 3 rebounds while shooting 57% from the field.

"Nevarda is going to be special. He has all the tools to play this game for a long time and eventually earn a living playing professionally," said Lynch. "He is someone we identified early on in the recruiting process and then set out to build a relationship with him and his wonderful mother, Ms. Tatum. His size and athletically ability will garner Division I attention, and I will focus on his confidence and consistency early on. He'll need to bring the right mindset every day, because we have high expectations for Nev. We are excited to have him in our program and part of the Salk family."

In addition to playing in the U20's Nationals with Queensland, Higgins also plays in the National Basketball League 1 (NBL1) for the Gold Coast Rollers. The NBL1 is a semi-professional league in Australia designed to help develop future professional players.

"We are really excited that Nevarda gets to continue his basketball journey and pursue the goals he has for himself," said Gold Coast NBL1 Head Coach Anthony Petrie. "It’s been a strong desire for him to get over to the states and continue to improve his game. As an association we are extremely proud of Nev and everything he has already achieved, but we cannot wait to watch how he keeps developing as he is one of the most promising juniors that has come through our system."

Higgins spent time on a basketball tour to the states in April 2023 through the "AUSA" basketball program. The tour included tournaments in Chicago, Indianapolis, and Minneapolis. Anthony Separovich, director of basketball AUSA Hoops, said Nevarda is an exciting talent and could be one of the best players in his class coming out of Australia. "His length and athleticism allow him to be disruptive on the defensive end, blocking shots above the rim and getting hands on deflections. His ability to shoot the three ball along with his physical gifts will allow him to contribute immediately for the Indians. I look forward to

watching his continued development and expect that he will attract many four-year schools in the coming months!"

Higgins becomes the third signee to join the Salkehatchie program from Australia, joining Daniel Poelsma (Melbourne) and Darcy Pares (Port Macquarie).

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