Felicia Barron has been surrounded by basketball her whole life.
Her parents both played the game and she grew up in Springfield, Mass., the city home to the Basketball Hall of Fame. After a successful high school career, the redshirt freshman decided to come to Quinnipiac because of the family atmosphere and the chance to play in a new arena.
However, her first season playing in college was cut short due to an ACL injury eight games into the season.
“It was really frustrating,” Barron said. “I was never used to sitting out games and watching my team play.”
Quinnipiac head coach Tricia Fabbri noticed Barron had fully recovered from the injury when she turned on her knee during a preseason workout but suffered no setbacks.
“She was back physically and mentally,” Fabbri said. “It’s more of a mental challenge to come back from an injury and put the ball in her hands and lace up the sneakers.”
Now Barron is back on the court as an instrumental part of the women’s basketball team.
With Barron healthy, the team has begun to recognize her capabilities. Through her first six games, she leads the Bobcats with 25 assists and leads the NEC in steals with 15. She also led the team with 14 points, six assists and five steals in their first victory of the season against the University of New Hampshire.
“Her athleticism alone sets her apart from many of the players in our league,” Fabbri said. “She sees the floor well and moves well in transition. She has really improved her game in terms of being the floor general and going through the plays.”
Barron’s talent and athleticism gives her reason to strive for the Rookie of the Year and Player of the Year awards. Plus, Barron is no stranger to individual accomplishments. In high school she totaled 1,331 points, won several tournament MVP awards and was named the 2008 Massachusetts Gatorade Player of the Year as the top female basketball player.
She also won three state championships in high school, and hopes that the team can reach the NEC championship game this season.
“We have to stick together, play every game like it’s our last and hopefully we can get to the championship,” Barron said.
Fabbri appreciated Barron’s passion for winning and noted her athletic ability and leadership skills.
“She’s going to lead and play with her performance first,” Fabbri said. “She cares about winning and her leadership is directing her physical play. Her energy and defensive prowess along with her athleticism is what gives this team a belief.”
Although Barron has nearly four years left to pave her future in basketball, she said she would like to continue to play after college overseas or at another level.
“She understands how to play the game,” Fabbri said. “She’s a great talent and she’s only going to get better.”