Reading High School Student Verbally Commits to University of Richmond
Soon-to-be senior Olivia Healy will take her talents to the University of Richmond to play Division I basketball. Healy led the Rockets to a State title as a junior last year.
Olivia Healy walked through the doors of Reading High school knowing she would make an impact for the Varsity Girls basketball team. That may be an understatement. And now, she has decided to play college ball for the University of Richmond.
Healy’s freshman year averaged 14 points while being awarded All-League, Daily Times Chronicle Player of the Year as well as a Middlesex League champion. In her sophomore season, Healy averaged 17 points while being named the Most Valuable Player of the Middlesex League. She was named All-Scholastic for the Boston Globe and Herald and she was named All-League, Daily Times Chronicle Player of the Year for the second time in as many years.
In 2012, her junior season, Healy averaged an impressive 21 points while earning her second Most Valuable Player award, third Middlesex League title, third Daily Times Chronicle Player of the Year award and her first Dream Team All-Scholastic honors for the Boston Globe and Herald. Healy also took home her first State title in her career at RMHS while joining the 1,000 point club in the process. Healy has accomplished so much in only three years and before her senior year of high school, she has decided to take her talents to the University of Richmond University to play basketball.
Healy had significant interest from the Patriot League including Holy Cross, the America East including University of New Hampshire and Albany, Ivy League and the Big East, but after a tough decision, Healy chose the University of Richmond.
“I chose Richmond because I felt as though it had Ivy League academics and big time basketball. Both things I value greatly and the coaches there are amazing people and very genuine. I was able to meet with the players who are great people as well and I am really looking forward to playing with them," Healy said. "The school also provides a leadership program. I love basketball and sports and someday I hope to see coaching as a possible career, therefore this leadership program really intrigued me. Overall, I felt very comfortable down there and I know it will be challenging, but I am very excited to start a new chapter in my life.”
Healy admitted that she has grown as a player since she stepped foot on the court as a freshman.
“I have certainly grown as a player since freshman year,” Healy said. “I’ve defined what type of player and leader I am on the court. Also, I have worked on developing guard skills like ball-handling and really working on the consistency of my jump shot in the offseason.”
Healy stressed that her commitment to play Division I basketball at University of Richmond is in direct result of Head coach Kim Penny.
“Coach Penney has been a very important role model for me as a basketball player. When I was younger, I went to her camps and little did I know, she was going to be such an influence on my life. She does help me with the fundamentals in the game, but she also teaches me and other players’ important morals and virtues that help us be successful off the court," Healy said. "In the recruiting process, coach Penny actually introduced me to Richmond and really got the ball rolling in that situation. I would meet every once and a while and coach would have called a handful of coaches for me, reaching out and asking them to evaluate me during the next live period. Without her, this process would have been very overwhelming.”
During the 2012-2013 season, Healy will still be wearing a Reading Rocket uniform and she stressed that she will still be focused even though she knows she will be playing at Richmond University after her high school career is finished.
“For next year, I really plan to just be the best leader I can possibly be for the high school team,” Healy said. “It wouldn’t interfere with any commitment to Richmond because I will not be starting work outs until mid-late July of that summer as well as going in for my first semester of classes. However, after this fall, I’m not going to be able to play AAU due to regulations and rules of NCAA, which is the same for any senior.”
After letting it all sink in, Healy is very satisfied that her hard work resulted in her playing for a Division I school.
“It’s an amazing feeling to know all the hours and games lead me to the position that I am in now. It is definitely something I have dreamed of since I was a young girl playing recreation basketball on Sundays with Morgan O’Brien as our dads coached together and now that it's reality, is very rewarding," she said. "My parents flew and drove to just about every tournament with me, traveling the east coast and without them, I would have never gotten this opportunity. Although it’s a great relief, and a lot of pressure lifted, it’s time to really start training and preparing for the future. I truly am so thankful and blessed that I have such great people around me who supported me every step of the way.”
Healy has certainly lived up to the billing at RMHS and she is ready to bring her intangibles to the University of Richmond when it is time.
“As a co-captain on a State championship team, I feel as though I can bring the drive of wanting to win to Richmond,” Healy said. “I know that many girls on their team have done the same thing in different states, so I feel as though I can contribute greatly. By then, I will have two years of experience as a captain, so I believe my leadership qualities will transfer from the high school game to the collegiate level and just bring a really positive attitude.”