“High Basketball IQ:” How the Bobcats’ new recruits are impressing Tricia Fabbri


Photos: Liz Flynn

Sergio De La Espriella

A new season means new faces for the Quinnipiac Bobcats’ women’s basketball team. There will be plenty to replace, as last year’s top 3-point shooter Taylor Herd, leading rebounder Paige Warfel and versatile Jaden Ward have graduated. Despite losing some key players, the Bobcats were able to bring in a new crop of young, talented players who are ready to make an immediate impact.

Let’s take a look at the newest members of the Bobcat family.

Rose Caverly – Guard

Technically, the Bobcats added Caverly last year as a transfer, but she will suit up for her first games in navy and gold this year after sitting out last season. We profiled Caverly here when she committed to the Bobcats last year.

Jillian Casey – Guard

Head coach Tricia Fabbri’s first words on how the team would replace Herd’s shooting sure were telling:

“There’s a young lady that you’re going to hear a lot about in Jill Casey,” Fabbri said.

The 5’10”, Horsehead, NY native is set to make an immediate impact in the Bobcats lineup. Casey should be quick to show everyone how she was able to rack up over 1,000 career high school points.

Nasserine William – Forward/Center

“You’re going to hear a lot more different names called,” Coach Fabbri said.

One of those names will be William, the Paris native who made her way to Quinnipiac via Putnam, CT.

At 6’1”, she can not only put the moves on in the post, but she also has the ability to hit three pointers, crucial to how Fabbri wants to have the team play. The stretch forward can provide the size and shooting needed to contribute immediately.

Tiera White – Forward

A top-15 player in the state of Florida, the 6’0” Port Orange native is exactly the type of high basketball IQ player that Fabbri needs. She had a career 71% FG percentage and was well above the high school national average in points, assists and rebounds per game, according to MaxPreps.

Halee Smith – Guard

At 5’10” out of Alexandria, PA, Smith dominates the court whenever she has the ball. A four-year varsity player, she commands the attention of opposing defenses. She can shoot and rebound well, but her strength lies in getting to the basket. Expect to see Smith at the free throw line a lot, as she made a habit in high school of getting three points the old-fashioned way.

As a whole, Fabbri is most impressed with how poised the first-years have looked.

“This is what I’m going to tell you right off the bat…their basketball IQ…they’re very smart and make good basketball decisions,” Fabbri said. “That’s probably what I’ve been most impressed with. They’re talented, they’re great young ladies, you’re going to enjoy following them and watch them have a lot of success on the court.”

That basketball IQ seems to be paying off so far, as the group looks to be getting up to speed on the offense and everything Coach Fabbri is asking of them.

There are always going to be ups and down in a normal season, and with the way the 2020-2021 schedule has been constructed, there is no room for error in a conference as competitive as the MAAC. In order for the Bobcats to reach their full potential, they’re going to need to get the best they can out of their new group of first-year players.