SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - The Worcester State University women's basketball team will be well-represented at the New England Women's Basketball Association Senior All-Star Classic, as three Lancers and head coach Karen Tessmer have been selected to the annual game.
In her 25th season at the helm of the Lancers, Tessmer led Worcester State to an overall record of 20-7, the program's first 20-win season since the 1980-81 season. The Lancers earned a share of the MASCAC Regular Season title for the second time in Tessmer's reign, and were the top seed in the MASCAC Tournament for the first time in program history. Under Tessmer's lead, Worcester State defeated two teams that qualified for the NCAA Tournament this season (Westfield State and Western New England), and held its opponents to the lowest field goal percentage in the MASCAC at just 34.7 percent. The team's average rebounding margin of 11.4 per game also led the conference, and ranked 12th in the nation.
Kaitlyn Berkel (Waterford, Conn.) is the first Lancer selected to the NEWBA Senior All-Star Classic. In December, she became the 20th 1,000-point scorer in program history, finishing ninth all time with 1,191 points as a Lancer. Berkel was second on the Lancers this season and fifth in the MASCAC with 7.7 rebounds per game, while ranking third on the team with 11.9 points per game. A 2017 Second Team All-Conference selection, Berkel graduates Worcester State ranking fourth all time with 816 career rebounds and sixth all time with 136 career blocked shots for the Lancers.
Brittany Herring (West Brookfield, Mas.) was Worcester State's second player selected to play in the All-Star Classic. Herring was a dominant force for the Lancers at the post position in her senior season. She led the MASCAC and ranked third in the nation with a field goal percentage of 66.7 on the season, and ranked second on the Lancers by averaging 12.5 points per game. She also led the conference with 2.6 blocks per game on the season. She graduates as the program's all-time leader in field goal percentage at 57.3 percent, ranks second in blocks with 268, third in rebounds with 848, and fourth in points with 1,349. Herring was an All-MASCAC selection each of her four years at Worcester State, and a three-time First Team selection.
Kate Surprenant (Pelham, N.H.) rounds out Worcester State's NEWBA All-Star Classic selections. Surprenant, Worcester State's captain in her senior season, was a solid deep threat who led the team in scoring on the year by averaging 12.7 points per game. She was the MASCAC's leading in three-point percentage on the year by nailing 45.2 percent of her shots from beyond the arc, while ranking seventh in the conference in assists at 3.0 per game. Surprenant graduates ranking fourth in program history with 345 career assists.
The 2019 NEWBA Senior All-Star Classic will be held on Saturday, March 23 at Blake Arena on the campus of Springfield College at 1 p.m.