BEMIDJI — Last season Erica Trabing joined the Bemidji State women’s basketball team as a top-25 prospect in among Minnesota’s high school programs and everyone had high expectations for her freshman season.
But her first year with the Beavers ended just as quickly as it started after she suffered a season-ending stress fracture in her collegiate debut against Lakehead on Nov. 3, 2011. She contributed four points, six rebounds and two assists in the game before the injury.
“The hard thing was she had a stress fracture,” Bemidji State head coach Mike Curfman said. “The hard thing about a stress fracture is that it takes a long time to recover from, but you actually start to feel better before you can get back on the court. It is not like a broken bone or something where you know in four to six weeks you will be good to go. With a stress fracture you have to keep getting x-rays to see how it is coming along.”
“It was really hard,” Trabing added. “Like coach said, it was kind of a nagging injury, so I always felt like I could play.”
Both Trabing and Curfman felt fortunate because Trabing was granted medical red-shirt status, meaning she could sit out the season and not have it count as a year of eligibility.
“She did a really good job of being patient,” Curfman said. “At times it can obviously be very frustrating, but the fact that she was able to get the medical redshirt really helped.”
Though it was hard sitting out, Trabing said she learned about the mental aspects of the game last season.
“The transition from high school to college is faster so I kind of got to see that and see how the teams in our conference play,” Trabing said. “That was good for me.”
This season the 5-10 shooting guard will join a crowded and talented backcourt that consists of Morgan Lee, Shannon Thompson, Lanae Rash, Ellie Wessling, Melissa Youngblut and Chelsea Carlson.
“Our team is really good,” Trabing said. “We are pretty stacked and I just want to contribute right away.”
Curfman praised Trabing for her scoring ability and feels her ability to put the ball into the basket is her strongest asset.
“She’s a very good scorer,” said Curfman. “She’s got a very nice pull-up jumper, she’s got a good 3-point shot and she can get to the basket if she wants to. So she’s a very well-rounded player.”
Trabing says her height and athleticism are things she brings to the team.
“I think I am another athletic guard,” Trabing said. “I am also pretty tall for being a guard. I feel like I bring some intensity to the team.”
In this season’s first three games Trabing has started in one and has averaged 2.7 points per game.
“She took a whole year off, so any time you’re away from the court that long there is going to be a little bit of rust,” Curfman said. “The thing about Erica is that she works hard and is a very smart young lady. She’s making great strides and is somebody we are very excited about (in terms of) what she will do during her time at Bemidji State.”