Lady Beacons gear up for playoff run

Lady Beacons gear up for playoff run

Ben Whelan

A quarter of the season left to go and the UMass Boston Lady Beacons are off to their best start in recent memory and at 12-7 (6-3 in conference), are currently third in the conference.

“It’s really exciting,” senior guard and team co-captain Kriten Reske said. “We’re beating teams that we’ve never beaten before in my time on the team, and we’re really playing better than we have [in recent years].”

“Probably the biggest factor is that we’re all getting along really well and we’re all really clicking,” Denise Ridge, team co-captain and leading rebounder, said. “We’ve all been together for a while now and we just have really good chemistry”.

The Lady Beacons are rolling behind a breakout season from LaKeisha Tucker, who is currently averaging 15.9 points per game, good enough for third in the conference. Over the last ten games, the Lady Beacons are 8-2, including a stretch in which the team ripped off five wins in a row. During this stretch, Tucker has averaged 18 points and is on an absolute tear over the last 6 games, averaging 23.5 points per game, including a season-high 30 point effort against conference rival Western Connecticut State University on Jan. 27.

This streak, combined with the stellar play of Tucker, gives the Lady Beacons great momentum entering the conference. Both Ridge and Reske believe that this team is gelling at just the right time to make a serious run at not only the conference tournament, but also to make a run at the national tournament in March. Although all of the Little East Conference teams make the playoffs at the end of the season, the Lady Beacons can secure a home game in the first round should they remain in the top four.

As for the remaining schedule, Reske believes that “We really need to beat some of the teams seeded ahead of us in order to get where we want to be”. They will have a shot as they play second-ranked Keene State on Feb. 3, the result of which will be released after press time. Should the standings remain as they are now, the team will enter the playoffs with a first round home game against Eastern Connecticut State on Feb. 20.