by Amy Audibert, Buffalo Sports Page College Basketball Expert
Stats don’t lie.
It’s a classic sports cliche where we often look to measure performance. In fact, most of us sports junkies are borderline obsessed with what the numbers say. We use them for plenty of reasons: to justify personal points of views in debates or conversations, to decide what needs to be addressed and worked on in practices to come, to set off-season training goals and to measure improvements or lack there of, just to name a few. In a world of athletics, not too much is concrete- but stats- well, they are.
Sure, you can use numbers to back up why Buffalo senior Stephanie Reid is arguably the all time best point guard to graduate in program history.
While her career numbers would make any hoop fan giddy, the intangibles not measured are a big contributor that leaves us with her legacy that should last a very long time.
The Arrival of Reid
Christmas may have been a little extra special for Bulls Head Coach Felisha Legette-Jack during the 2014-15 season. In the midst of a late December day, a package arrived in the form of a 5’6 Australian point guard. It was exciting for the local fans. UB was in need of a true PG, such a vital role. Reid’s arrival generated some buzz with the Alumni Area regulars who recognized the need for a floor general. Is she ready? Can she play halfway through the season? Will she be able to form any chemistry with the team? How will she learn the playbook?
These questions were floating around but with so much unknown, expectations were merely impossible to have. Reid played her first minutes in a Bulls jersey on January 10, 2015 at Miami (OH). She was granted 5 minutes of court time in a 20 point win, then 5 more minutes three days later at home in a 3 point Western Michigan loss . It was still hard to get a grasp on what type of immediate impact Reid would have on this team. Just four short days after that WMU loss, Stephanie really began to lay down her legacy. She received her first career start, put in 36 minutes and finished with 5 points, 7 rebounds and 2 assists in a big win over one of the top Mid American Conference teams in Ball State. What probably most intrigued fans was the constant energy Reid gave off from start to end. The big Bulls win was nice, but even more encouraging was the display from a true point guard and a freshman at that, right here in Alumni Arena. After this Ball State game, Reid has never looked back, starting every Buffalo game she has dressed for since then.
Coming off a Sweet Sixteen loss this past weekend, sadly, Reid has played her last game in a Bulls jersey. For all the stat lovers out there- here are some of her career numbers and how they rank in UB program history.
- #1 in assists – 681
- #11 in points – 1,218
- #15 in field goals made – 420
- T#13 in 3pt field goals made – 71
- #12 in 3pt attempts- 248
- #6 in free throws made- 307
- #9 in free throw attempts- 398
- #4 in free throw percentage 77.3
Steph Reid also holds the single game record (tied with Ashley Zuber) at 16 assists and owns the top two spots in all-time assist season records. During her junior camapign, Reid made UB history throwing out 233 dimes on the year while this season she finished #2 all-time with 211 total helpers.
Reid Between The Lines
There’s no secret here- Reid is a fantastic passer- often delivering with pristine timing and placement no matter who the receiver is. It has been absolutely entertaining to watch. With the possession of great handles and quick feet, most point guards may look to take the lane and score themselves but Reid is a pass-first player. That’s not to say when her team needed to score the most she wasn’t able to get it done. It was more often then not Reid coming up with big buckets herself.
Maybe the biggest one of her career came on March 12, 2016 when Buffalo found themselves in a MAC Championship game. Buffalo was in bounding the ball with about 3 seconds remaining in a 71-71 OT tie. Reid was able to get to the paint and bank in a runner at the buzzer to give Buffalo their first ever MAC Championship. It would lead to the first NCAA Tournament appearance ever for the Bulls and in terms of conference history- it was the lowest seed (8th) in MAC history to win the Women’s Basketball Championship.
Steph Stuffed the Memories
There are so many memories over the last four seasons that have brought smiles and a sense of pride to not only the Buffalo Women’s Basketball family but also the WNY hoops community, something very special has been built. Steph Reid has something to do with almost every one of those memories.
After my fourth year covering this program, I believe, aside from all the the numbers, records and rings, what makes Steph Reid so endearing is the passion, energy and fire that she brings every single outing. As an analyst, I have to prepare for each game with a lot of unknown going in. But I NEVER ONCE over the last 4 seasons found myself wondering what kind of game Steph was going to bring to the table. It is truly inspiring to watch her come with grit and excitement, often defending high pressure in the full court with a giant smile on her face (see one of my favorite Reid game shots, the cover photo for this story). It was moments like this where I would find goosebumps on my arms and silently remind myself that I wasn’t there as a fan. Steph Reid can make anyone a fan of this game.
In fact Steph, if your reading this, thank you.
For your passion and commitment to the game, thank you. For NEVER cheating the crowd with effort, not once in your entire career at Buffalo- thank you. For being an advocate of strength and toughness – thank you. For showing the world how great women’s basketball is- thank you. I CANNOT wait to follow the rest of your career and only sad I won’t be calling it!
The University of Buffalo Women’s Basketball team has had some fantastic coverage from local media outlets over the past three weeks or so. It has been a stellar postseason run to conclude the UB careers of five fantastic women. I without out a doubt, feel a tremendous sense of gratitude having the opportunity to first hand witness the brilliant job Felisha Legette-Jack and her superb staff has done over the past four seasons. They recruit great ball players and phenomenal women who truly embrace a family culture. It is no surprise to see the on and off court accomplishments that this program has achieved. Alumni Arena has some great days ahead, but for now I hope the Bulls are ALL getting some much needed and deserved rest after this historic season.