DURHAM, N.C.-- While not being able to play this year wasn’t the ideal way I wanted to kick off my college career, I now see the situation as somewhat of a "blessing in disguise." And although it kills me not being able to play, the benefits of "redshirting" make it definitely worth the wait.
Instead of rushing to get back on the court, I now have a full year to get 100% healthy and have extra time to learn the ins and outs of the system.
Adjusting to college basketball as a freshman is a major transition and can be an overwhelming experience, even for those of us who think we came in prepared. That said, with this full year of watching and learning, I’ll be more than ready and prepared when my “freshman” year comes around again next season.
One good thing about being a freshman is that you have an excuse when you mess up…you’re a freshman. When adjusting to college basketball, making mistakes is inevitable. It's just a part of the transition and those mistakes only help you to learn. I’ve definitely had my fair share of “freshman moments" and still do, practically on a daily basis during practice. Whether it's messing up the defense, doing a drill wrong, or missing a layup in a drill causing the whole team to do it over again, more than likely I’m the guilty one. But every day in practice I’m becoming more and more comfortable and confident. It also helps that I have some pretty great players to learn from.
Tricia Liston especially has done a good job taking me under her wing this year and showing me the ropes. Ever since I came out on my recruiting trip to Duke Tricia and I have been pretty tight. We're similar in a lot of ways on and off the court.
I was really looking forward to having one year to play with her, but because of my injury I’m just trying to learn from her instead. We both play the same position and are three-point shooters so having her to learn from has been really helpful. Anytime I have a question, mess up a drill, or just need advice, Tricia is always more than willing to help me out.
With the adversity our team has faced this year with injuries, a lot of pressure has been put on Tricia to lead us and she has not disappointed. Every game she’s consistent. She our leading scorer, can create her own shot, go off the bounce, and is one of our team’s best leaders. Just recently she broke the record for most career three-pointers made at Duke, and although she doesn’t believe me, I keep telling her I’m going to break her record before I graduate. I’ve got a long way to go before I can reach that goal and I'm aware those are some pretty big shoes to fill, so for right now I’ll let her hold on to that title.