The wait was overdue for the Lady Rattler basketball team. It had been seven years since Yolanda Dixon was named to the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference team in the 2003-2004 season. Junior guard Tameka McKelton and senior forward Antonia Bennett have put an end to that streak.
Just minutes after beating rival Bethune Cookman and gaining a first round bye in the MEAC tournament, McKelton and Bennett were told by head coach LeDawn Gibson that they were both named to the all conference team.
“I just smiled and thanked my teammates for allowing me to even get to this point,” Bennett said.
Bennett, a 6-0 senior guard/forward, finished the regular season averaging 16.2 points and 8.4 rebounds per game. The former FAMU Rattler Rookie of the Year, and now team captain, says making the all conference team had always been her goal.
“From the beginning of the season, making the all-conference team was one of my goals,” Bennett said. “Our old coach, Coach Joyner, talked about making the team a lot. I just had to go out there and get it.”
By making the all-conference team, McKelton, a 5-8 junior guard, continues to add to her list of accomplishments as a Rattler. McKelton became a part of the 1,000 points club earlier this season and improves on her second team all-conference performance from last season.
“I was excited because last year I made the second team. This year I improved and I made the first team,” McKelton said. “It wasn’t my goal I was just so happy to make it.”
Even with all the individual accolades McKelton says that having another all conference player with her has made her job on the court easier.
“Having two all-conference members makes it easier on us. Especially when they try to take one of us out our game, the other one will step up,” McKelton said.
Bennett hopes their opponents get too caught up with shutting down the two all conference players, because it makes it that much easier for everyone else.
“Two all conference players really makes it easier for everyone else on the team, Bennett said. “It allows them to take more open shots.”
Neither player will be too worried about celebrating their accomplishment during spring break. Both McKelton and Bennett have their eyes on a bigger prize.
“We don’t even have a spring break,” McKelton said.
“We will be at the tournament trying to bring back a trophy to Tallahassee. That would make a great spring break,” Bennett said.