I know it’s a cliche and in this business, you’re supposed to shy away from using them, but La Salle Senior Guard David Beatty is truly a “First guy in, last guy out” kind of player.
If you follow Beatty on social media, you’ll see that he’s putting in the work at Tom Gola Arena until the late hours of the night. I’m talking 10:00, 11:00, even midnight sometimes.
So when Beatty capped off a career-high 22 point performance with a win over Saint Louis on February 3rd, it was super rewarding for him and the La Salle program.
“Dave has been awesome,” La Salle head coach Ashley Howard said. “He’s a hard worker, he’s a gym rat, he lives in Gola and I knew the Basketball Gods would reward him at some point.”
In what could be his final year at La Salle (Beatty can return to La Salle next season if he’d like due to COVID eligibility rules), Beatty is trying to set an example for the underclassmen on the team and lead by example.
“Me and coach tried to tell the team all the time is to believe in ourselves because the talent is there,” Beatty said. “We just need to work hard everyday, come get better in practice and Coach said everything was going to work out for us, as long as we’re the best team we can be at the end of March we’ll be fine.”
The South Carolina transfer has averaged 8.2 points per game, good for third on the team. He is also averaging 2.5 rebounds and 1.2 assists.
Prior to his 22-point outing, Beatty scored single-digit points in his last seven games, including a goose egg against George Mason.
“Proud of Dave,” Howard said. “Great game for him, we talked about it, he’s had his struggles this season, his attitude has been unbelievable, he’s stayed positive, he’s been a great leader and he was rewarded today and was ready to step-up big time for our team.”
The hard work definitely paid off for Beatty in their game against Saint Louis. He shot 8-15 including a 4-5 from three.
“He made a couple of big shots in the first half,” Howard said. “He had it going and then in the moment, we got him some looks in the second half and he came up huge and I think that gave our team energy and belief that we could win this game.”
Even when he’s not contributing as much on the offensive end, that doesn’t stop Beatty from being a local leader on the court. A bulldog style of play, Beatty gets amped up for almost everything positive that La Salle does, whether he’s on the floor or on the bench.
He brings the “juice” as some may call it.
La Salle’s sports psychologist Dr. Joe Carr suggested to Howard and the staff to get the players on the bench involved a little more, bring the juice. La Salle has, literally, and it’s been a positive atmosphere on the sidelines for the Explorers.
“(Laughs) Coach brings big things of Hawaiian Punch before the game,” Beatty said. “We call it juice, we keep our juice at a level 5 so we preach that every game going forward.”
Even when things aren’t going the way Beatty or La Salle would like them to, that doesn’t stop Beatty from being ready for his next opportunity to contribute to the team.
“It’s a life lesson, in life it’s going to be a bumpy road but you got to stay the course,” Howard said. “I think that’s been the message, stay positive, don’t get discouraged, your opportunity’s going to come and when you’re in the moment, you got to be here now in the moment and take it advantage of the opportunities.”
Turns out, hard work does pay off, and where Beatty and La Salle go from here is unknown, but one thing is for certain, Beatty will keep working and keep bringing the juice.
“My teammates were finding me, staying ready, working out everyday, going to the gym every night,” Beatty said. “It’s just being confident in yourself and being confident in your teammates and having confidence in your coach, everything is going to work out.”