BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Prior to tipping off against Kent State in the Mid-American Conference quartfinals, UB Head Coach Felisha-Legette-Jack said her team needed to maintain their identity and play good defense.
Leading by just five at half, UB locked down, forced 10 turnovers and held Kent State scoreless for more than six minutes in the third quarter en route to a 72-50 win.
In total, the Bulls forced 26 turnovers and turned those into a season high 41 points.
“That’s where we get our motivation and our transition points from,” Cierra Dillard said after the win. “We just put all our IQs together, read off each other and where the ball is going and try to push it out in transition.”
Despite being th No. 2 seed in this year’s postseason tournament, the Bulls still feel like they have something to prove.
Steph Reid, who was a 2nd Team All-MAC selection, packed the box score finishing with a 22 points, 11 assists and five steals.
“There’s great players in the first team and great players in the second and third. It’s not going to affect my performance, if anything it gives more motivation, if anything that’s the same way for my teammates, ” Reid said. “I was honored to be part of the team in the first place, no complaints.”
She continues, “We always have more to prove. I’m sitting next to what I would say is the best coach in the MAC, but it’s okay. It’s something that if you put me along two of my sisters in the second team, we’re happy. We’re a team, we have unity and that’s something we take pride in. So we didn’t get first team, that’s okay. We’ll come out and we’ll show you as to why we think that we deserve what we have.”
Reid, who is the program’s all-time leader and surpassed 1,000 careee points this season, earned high praise from her head coach.
“People like Steph don’t come through doors very often,” her coach said. “We have to celebrate those people and respect their craft and I think Stephanie is arguably one of the best players to come through this MAC Conference.
Dillard (2nd team) scored 11 of her 16 in the first half and finished a rebound shy of a double-double, with nine.
“I just give all the credit to my teammates, you can’t do it alone,” Dillard said. “The way we feed off each other, it’s not just one person who has to do everything, we really feed off each other and we really push in transition. It’s easy to play when you have great teammates like I do.”
With the victory, the Bulls advance to the MAC semifinals, where they will face off against the winner of Western Michigan and Ball State.
It’s the fourth straight year UB will have advanced to the tournament semis and where their season ended a year ago.
“It’s kind of personal for us,” Legette-Jack-Jack added. “We know what happened last March and we want to rectify that.”
Tipoff om Friday is set for 1:30.