Bailey Tabeling wanted to make her decision before her senior year.
She didn’t want to worry about who’s coming to watch her when or anything aside from just playing.
When she took a visit to Ohio University in late June, she felt it could be the right place for her.
On Wednesday night, Tabeling officially announced her commitment to play basketball for the Bobcats.
“Just in general, the campus was beautiful. It wasn’t ginormous, so that was really nice. The coaching staff, they’re some of the sweetest people I’ve ever met,” Tabeling said. “Just the way they play basketball there made everything easier for me. They play exactly how I want to play. Seeing them (Ohio coaches) at these (AAU) tournaments over the last couple of weekends was really nice to see.”
Tabeling was being recruited by other Division I schools, as well, and she’s pleased that she’s going to play DI coming from a Class A school in Trinity Lutheran.
“It’s so nice,” she said. “I feel like if you’re 1A or 2A, those players just get overlooked all the time.”
Tabeling just wrapped up her junior season in which she was named The Tribune’s Girls Basketball Player of the Year. The soon-to-be-senior averaged 19.8 points per game, 7.8 rebounds, 4.7 assists, 3.0 steals and 1.4 blocks. All of those stats led the team.
She plays AAU ball with the Indiana Elite Thunder, and they’re gearing up for a trip to nationals in California this weekend.
In addition to playing basketball, Tabeling plays volleyball and softball, and she had solid seasons in those sports, as well. There were times growing up when she did travel softball, volleyball and basketball.
“Once I got into high school and all the summer practices started for volleyball or basketball, it just became hectic,” she said. “I decided to stick with basketball. I’ve just always liked it more.”
A big reason why Tabeling wanted to make her college decision prior to her senior year is because now, she can just focus on having fun.
She is looking forward to all three sports this coming school year.
“I’m super excited. Starting out with volleyball, our team looks great. We’re going to be one of the younger teams, but our younger players have experience, and we’re starting to get the flow of playing together,” Tabeling said. “For basketball, at the shootouts and DI camps we went to, it was amazing. We just ran and played basketball. I have absolutely no idea what softball has to come, but we should have some good talent coming in.”
Tabeling and Trinity won a sectional title in all three of those sports this past season, and her volleyball and softball teams won regional titles.
In basketball, Tabeling is the focal point of the team. She wants to be more aggressive during her senior campaign and also take a step up on the defensive side of the ball.
“Definitely attacking the basket more,” she said. “We won’t have any size for basketball this year, so if you can get to the basket, get to the basket. Then just defense, I’m working on it and improving. Defense is going to be what wins us games this year. Defense and getting to the basket are the two main things.”
Tabeling intends to officially sign her national letter of intent for Ohio around November.