When did you first start playing basketball?
1st grade – 2008
What was your overall recruiting process like and what were some of the schools that showed interest in you?
My overall recruiting process was very good and a great experience. I was very fortunate to have great coaches that helped me tremendously throughout the whole process. It was a little bit overwhelming at times but overall it was a really fun and life-changing experience. During the process many schools showed interest in me, but I went on visits to Wagner, Siena, Quinnipiac, and the United States Naval Academy.
Did your family, friends, etc. play a role in your decision and how so?
Yes, my family and friends did play a huge role in my decision, as well as my coaches. My family went on all of my visits with me so that helped a lot, especially my brother because he had just started his freshman year at Binghamton University, so it was interesting to see his perspective. After each visit my parents and I would sit down and talk about the school, the coaches, and all the things we thought were important. My friends also played a huge role because a lot of them were going through the same process with other sports. Being able to hear from them about their perspectives and experiences helped a lot. I also have some friends and teammates who have already gone through this process and they were very helpful whenever I had questions.
Tell us a little bit about your high school and AAU experience and how both played a role in your decision.
My high school basketball experience has been very fun and challenging. For that team, I am one of only a few who play basketball all year so I have had to really step up and become a leader both on and off the court, sometimes that even means playing different positions throughout the course of each game. For AAU, it is really different because everybody there wants to keep playing basketball in college, so it is basically all of the really good players from around the area coming together and playing on a team. It has been a really great experience for me being able to form bonds and friendships with these girls from all over our area that I would not have met if it weren’t for this team. My AAU team also helped me get my name out there and get recruited. Both of these programs played huge roles in my decision because they are so similar, so obviously I want to go to a similar college program. Also, I have had great coaches for both who have helped shape me into the player and person I am today. My AAU coaches, Rob Baxter and Mike Constantine, were very involved in the whole recruiting process and helped me with everything regarding my decision. Mike even came over to my house the night before I committed to help me with my decision. My high school coach, Andy Scott, also prepared me for everything and has helped so much through the years. If it weren’t for him, none of this would have been possible.
In the end, why did you choose Quinnipiac?
I chose Quinnipiac because I love the coaching staff, they have a beautiful campus, they have the academics that I am interested in, and many more reasons. When I was on campus it just felt like I knew I could fit in there and have a great college experience.
What are you most looking forward to at Quinnipiac?
I am looking forward to the overall college basketball experience at Quinnipiac. I’m excited for all the memories and great experiences it will bring and how it will all help me in the future.
What is your favorite memory playing basketball growing up?
I have had so many great memories playing basketball that it is impossible to pick just one. All of the experiences I have had being part of many different teams has led to so many great moments and amazing memories that I will always cherish. Things like going to Chicago, Washington DC, and all of the fun places we went for AAU with all of my teammates are things that I will never forget. To throw it back even further, I will never forget the countless games and memories that I have from playing rec and high school basketball.
Any advice for players who are looking to play at the next level? (About the recruiting process, on and off the court, etc.)
Enjoy it. Have some fun and don’t take it all for granted. Also, make sure to take advantage of every opportunity you can and get your name out there. Then, when you are ready to make a decision, don’t be afraid to talk it out with friends and family, and to ask questions. It can get very overwhelming at times which is why it is so important to have people to talk to and calm you down. But most importantly, be patient. Not everything is going to happen right away, so it is very important to be patient and trust the process.
How will your high school team be this upcoming season? What are your goals entering your final season?
My high school team will surprise a lot of people this year. I think a lot of people are going to underestimate us this year and I am excited to prove them wrong. People don’t expect us to do well, but after this summer, I think we will have a successful season. My goals going into my last season are to win STAC and to bring home a sectional title for the first time in a while.
What are you most excited for in your senior year?
I am most excited to go through everything one last time with all of my friends that I have had through the years. I am also excited for all of the opportunities that being a senior brings. I’m excited to go out on a good note and hopefully have made a difference for people throughout my high school career. But, I am most excited about what is to come in the future.
Now hear from the BNY Select Head Coach, Robert Baxter, on what he had to say about Jillian!
Jillian joined BNY SELECT in 2017 and has competed with our girls program the past three seasons. Coaching Jillian has been an absolute pleasure. She comes from a wonderful family and it’s evident their beliefs and values have not been lost on Jillian. She is an everyday player who desires to be great and is willing to put in the work required to do so. Jillian is a wonderful young lady, super student and terrific teammate. There is not a person around who does not absolutely love her. Just one of those special kids. We are just so grateful to Coach Fabbri for the opportunity she is offering Jillian at Quinnipiac University!! To be heading to the state of Connecticut to play for a coach who is undoubtedly one of the very best in the business is just something not to many players get to do. Cannot wait to watch her learn and grow as a person and player these next 4-5 years. Jillian is simply a kid who has earned all the success she is experiencing. She has just concentrated on the daily steps rather than the end result.. just surrendered the outcome knowing that if she immersed herself in the process that the final outcome would be something she would be very proud and excited about.
Now hear from the Horseheads Head Coach, Andy Scott, on what he had to say about Jillian!
Where did you first see Jillian play?
Jill has been part of our varsity squad for four years, played on JV as a 7th and 8th grader and was our water girl for two years (5th and 6th grade) where she played for her AAU Jammers team. I first saw Jill play at our Horseheads Basketball Camp when she was in third grade,
What have you enjoyed most about coaching Jill?
Jill is the epitome of hard work and extra effort. She does all the right things off the court (playing with an elite team, going to open gyms, etc…). But what is most admirable is the time she puts in when nobody is watching. Putting up 500 shots a day, sacrificing school proms and dances to be better. I appreciate her work ethic, her demeanor, and her attitude. All are very refreshing. Nothing is deserved. Everything is gained.
Tell me a little bit about Jill as a person off the court?
Jill is a brilliant student. She has an academic average above 99%. She played three sports, basketball, soccer, and softball, before she decided to become a D-1 type ball player. She invested herself with the BNY AAU organization and those coaches have accelerated all aspects of her game to a new level. Jill works out with them 4 days a week, plus her shooting on her own. She is a family-oriented person who is quiet, but competitive; hard working, and just an overall great person.
What are you most excited about seeing Jill do at the next level?
Jill will be my fifth scholarship player from Horseheads. I look forward to seeing her wear that collegiate uniform, and helping her team in any aspect. It will be great that she will be able to go out and be able to experience D-1 athletics, get an education, and have fun doing it.
Any other thoughts?
Jill has been a very versatile and unselfish player. She started as a small forward, played point guard for me last year, has been coming off screens as a shooting guard, and this year will do a little bit of everything. Great kid, great attitude, great effort. Good core values, excellent family, super person.