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Meriden’s Gillespie grabs full ride to UNH


MERIDEN — After a stellar career at Hartford’s Capital Prep, Meriden resident and scoring machine Levy Gillespie Jr. is taking his all-around game to the next level.

Gillespie will suit up for the University of New Haven basketball team in the fall after receiving a full ride from the Division II school.

“They showed they really wanted me,” Gillespie said Thursday. “The coach came to all of my AAU games. They just had a strong interest in me and that was important in my decision.”

The 6-foot-3 point guard was a four-year starter for the Trailblazers. He left the program as the all-time assists leader and ranks third in school history in both points (1,959) and rebounds.

As a senior, Gillespie was selected First Team All-State. He averaged 26.2 points, 7.2 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 3.5 steals to guide the Trailblazers to another Constitution State Conference title. Gillespie was a four-time All-CSC honoree.

Gillespie drew some Division I interest as well, but the full ride made UNH the best fit for him.

“Getting a full scholarship: To me, it’s a huge accomplishment,” Gillespie said. “My parents told me the only way I was going to college is to go for free. It’s great to do something I love at a school that costs a lot of money.”

Gillespie plans to study sports management. He said he’s ready for college academically and athletically, but has plenty of work to do between now and the fall.

“I feel I have to get a lot stronger and faster,” Gillespie said. “I will spend the entire summer lifting weights and doing agility drills.”

Gillespie said his goal is to be the Chargers’ starting point guard.

“I’ve been playing my whole life,” he said. “It’s going to be a big adjustment from high school basketball to college basketball, but I’m ready for it.”

As recruiting ends for Levy, his younger sister Kiah is still very much in the middle of the process.

Levy Gillespie said his sister was on a official visit to Rutgers on Thursday.

The senior-to-be at Capital Prep led the Trailblazers to three straight state titles and was Connecticut’s 2013-14 Gatorade Player of the Year.



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