Photo: emx_20200119_mot_sports_pritchett_p1_

From the better days, former Lake Norman High School basketball product KiShawn Pritchett has decided to depart from the Davidson College men’s program due to ongoing related recovery from a nagging knee injury dating back to his high school playing career.  

A case of déjà vu all over again has ultimately proven too much for one longtime area premier basketball player to accept.

Mooresville resident KiShawn Pritchett, a former Lake Norman High School boys basketball product and — until recently — a member of the nearby Davidson College men’s program, has reportedly decided to distance himself completely from the game that has carried him so far.

Nursing a nagging knee injury that can actually be traced all the way back to the early segments of the senior season of his high school career with the Lake Norman Wildcats, Pritchett has left the Davidson program effective immediately.

The burden of sitting on the sidelines again has proved to be too much for him to handle.

“It’s very difficult for him to be around basketball,’’ revealed Bob McKillop, head coach of the Davidson Wildcats, in a press conference following the team’s most recent appearance when questioned directly about Pritchett’s status. “Very difficult. Sadly, I don’t think it’s in the cards for him (to return). It’s not happening.”

It’s a repeat, of sorts, as to what took place during Pritchett’s final season of high school play.

Coming off a junior prep season during which he earned All -State honors after leading the Wildcats to the N.C. High School Athletic Association’s 4A class state championship, Pritchett suffered a knee injury early in his senior year that practically sidelined him throughout the season and forced him to see limited action.

Despite being off the court, he was still rewarded for ability with a basketball scholarship to Davidson and maintained his same-nickname Wildcats ties.

Recovering from the injury resulted in Pritchett also sitting out his entire full freshman year of eligibility and he was granted medical redshirt status.

Once returning to the court, he appeared to be in previous form.

In his first full year with the team, the 6-foot-6 and 225-pound guard seemed healthy enough as he appeared in 28 games. He garnered a starting position in 16 of those occasions.

The following season, Pritchett was named a starter in 32 of his 33 games played, twice registering double-digits in scoring in the season.

His junior season a year ago, Pritchett started all 34 games for the Wildcats, He reached twin digits in scoring 10 times, reaching what remains a career high I7 points against George Washington. He increased his presence across the team’s statistical board in playing time, scoring average, rebounds per game and assists per appearances, respectively, as well.

What had all the positive makings of a senior season for Pritchett and a Davidson team that returned the bulk of its talent from the previous season took a sour turn during pre-season practice. Pritchett re-injured his knee that held him out of practice. Expectations anticipated his return by the start of the team’s participation within its Atlantic 10 Conference that got underway earlier this month.

Pritchett’s condition never allowed him to return to the court this season until making the decision to distance himself completely from the program.

Pritchett arrived at Davidson after earning multiple All-Region and all-conference honors to complement his All-State selection. The former two-time selection as the Iredell County Boys Basketball Player of the Year — being so honored following both his sophomore and junior seasons — was also a member of Lake Norman’s 2014 team that reached the NCHSAA 4A class championship finals.

For his prep career that earned attention from Davidson during his recruiting process, Pritchett posted a per-game scoring average of just over 15 points while also being counted on for seven rebounds, nearly four assists and almost two steals per contest as well.

Coincidentally, Pritchett’s decision to depart comes during a desperate time for Davidson.

The Wildcats head back into play Sunday afternoon coming off losses in three of their four games, the lone win over the span taking place at home and in overtime against what is currently the outright last-place entry in the updated A-10 standings.

Pritchett is actually one of two returning starters to leave the program of late, joining former fellow first-unit player Luke Frampton.

A once promising season based on the fact that six of Davidson’s top players were returning from the previous year’s 24-win season serving to also established it as one of the preseason favorites to challenge for the A-10 title has since turned sour with the Wildcats entering today’s play owning a 7-9 overall record that includes a 1-3 showing within crucial conference play.{/div}

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