When it comes to her physical well-being, the fates have not always been kind to Danita Estorga.

Still, she has persevered.

Estorga was in the midst of her senior campaign during a decorated basketball career at Righetti High School when she suffered a season-ending leg injury in the team’s first league game.

Estorga took a redshirt season her first year at Biola University. After a solid first season of college basketball, Estorga was having a better second season when she suffered a shoulder injury.

“I was out most of the last half of the season,” she said. “(Team personnel) just didn’t want to aggravate the issue.

“I played the two games in our conference tournament. The shoulder is 100 percent healed now.”

The Eagles won in the first round of the PacWest Tournament and lost in the second. Estorga scored a combined 17 points in the two games.

Now, with team workouts scrapped in the wake of the NCAA in March canceling the rest of the 2020 spring sports season because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Estorga is dealing with asthma as she works out on her own.

“I’m at a high risk because of asthma,” Estorga said. “I have to be really cautious about where I’ve been going and how much has been going on outside.

“I’ve just been doing what I can inside. My aunt has a hoop, so I’ve been working out on that.”

Before she got hurt her sophomore season Estorga, at 10.7 points a game, led Biola in scoring.

She started the season by scoring in double figures in 10 straight games. Estorga began her sophomore campaign with a double-double then scored a career high 22 points against Cal State Dominguez Hills.

She finished first on the team in rebounds, at 6.2 a game. After scoring in double digits nine times her freshman year, including a season high 15 points against Cal State L.A., Estorga improved all her shooting percentage numbers the next season.

After an all-everything career at Righetti under coach Desiree Domingues (now Desiree Hitch), Estorga redshirted her first year at Biola.

She will be a junior in terms of eligibility next season

“Yes, definitely the redshirt year helped me adjust to college basketball,” the 6-foot-1 Estorga said.

“As a freshman, it helped me get into the college rhythm at a slower pace. I was able to see things more from a coach’s point of view. It helped as a player to see why coaches call certain things in the middle of a game.

“It helped me as a player transition to the pace at that level. It was definitely a growing year for me.”

Estorga could play every position on the floor when she was at Righetti, and she has been doing a lot of the same at Biola.

“Every year I’ve switched positions,” she said. “This year I was the (center).”

After competing in the NAIA, Biola became an NCAA Division II program in 2019. The Eagles had their first NCAA Division II campaign the 2019-20 season.

Estorga was home in the Santa Maria Valley at press time, taking online courses once in-person classes were canceled.

“As soon as the news came out about (schools) going online, our campus decided to send everyone home,” she said.

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“I think that, with all the free time I’ve had now, online courses are really easy. I’ve had a lot of time to focus on homework and studies.”

She is looking forward to returning to the La Habra-based Biola campus.

“I love the Biola campus, actually,” Estorga said. “It kind of reminds me of the Righetti-Orcutt area. It’s in a really nice area.

“It’s small enough so I don’t have to worry about driving my car to class. I can just walk everywhere.”

Estorga said, “With an extra year of eligibility, I’ve decided to have a double major/double minor. I’ll major in psychology and sociology, and minor in physical studies and coaching.”

After her time at Biola is done, “I’m hoping to find a way to play overseas,” Estorga said. “If that doesn’t work out, I want to go to law school and become a child advocate.”

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