By Benjamin Wideman, Director of Communications & Sports Information
Jordan Barbeau isn't your typical college basketball player.
She lost interest in the sport after her junior year at Iron Mountain (Mich.) High School and shifted her attention to other activities like volleyball and softball.
So it’s a bit ironic that she was a starting guard and co-captain for the Silver Lake College women’s basketball team this season.
“I had pretty much lost all interest in basketball, so I was a bit hesitant to get back into it because I transferred to Silver Lake (from St. Norbert College) strictly for volleyball,” Jordan said.
“But I talked to (friend and roommate) Abby (Gerhard), and she said that if I played on the basketball team last year then she’d play on the volleyball team with me. And that was how I got back into basketball.”
Barbeau averaged 5.8 points per game this season and had 78 assists and 40 steals. Her reignited passion for basketball helped the Lakers win their last nine games and finish the season with a 23-7 record, one of the best in school history.
“Jordan is dedicated and hard working,” said Gerhard, who has been friends with her for four years, dating back to their days at Iron Mountain High School. “She gives 110 percent, and she’s a captain so she brings a positive attitude.”
Added SLC head coach Mike Flentje: “Jordan is a feisty defensive player. Nobody wants to have her guard them on offense. She’s constantly hustling out there. She’ll do anything to help win the ballgame.”
Barbeau’s favorite game this season was a 12-point outing in a 60-47 victory over Fox Valley Technical College on Feb. 4.
Barbeau said her family has been important throughout her athletic career. Her parents, Mark and Rebecca, attend as many games as possible, and her older siblings — Justin, Melissa, Don and Mike — and their seven combined children are equally supportive. Don was her role model in athletics when she was young, Barbeau said, noting that “he really inspired me to play as hard as I could.”
Another motivating factor for Barbeau is that she’s on track to become only the second person in her family (in addition to her sister Melissa) to earn a college degree. She’s majoring in Early Childhood Special Education.
“Going to college and doing something for myself like this is huge,” Barbeau said.