Leadership Series: O’Maryiah Tucker brings the hustle

Brandon Dyer, Sports Editor & Podcast Host

O’Mariyah Tucker joined the Lady Chargers in 2019 and she has made a name for herself, starting in 43 of her 56 games since her arrival.

Turner made a name for herself at McEachern high school in Powder Springs, GA, where she quickly moved up the ranks in her recruiting class.

At the end of the 2019 season, Tucker had become the fifth-ranked player in her recruiting class in the state of Georgia, eventually committing to the Lady Chargers.

The place that her presence can be felt the best is in the paint, where she averaged 7.1 rebounds per game last season.

Tucker says that the key to winning for her is by playing hard.

“Hustling and going hard every play. Play through the whistle. You’re not going to be more tired taking that one extra step so do it,” Tucker said.

Her second year on the Lady Chargers proved to be one where she had to assert herself into one of the key leader roles for the team, something that she says is an honor.

“It feels good to have players looking up to me and the coaches looking at me differently than other players. Take it head on because if I fall behind the team does,” Tucker said.

The Lady Chargers found themselves in the GCAA Championship Game against the South Georgia Technical College Jets, where Tucker said that she had to step up and be a leader for the team.

“In the GCAA championship game, I had to lead the team on the court at times because I was on the court the whole game,” said Tucker.

The Lady Chargers would end up losing the game in overtime, but they are trying to bounce back this season.

The team has now gotten used to offseason practices, something that they weren’t able to do much of before last season due to COVID-19 protocols. Tucker said this has impacted the conditioning this offseason.

“Starting slower and a lot of us are out of shape so there has been a lot of conditioning,” Tucker said.

Tucker says that the biggest strength to the team this season is their speed.

“Ability to run the floor because we’re quick and have a lot of speed,” said Tucker, “Transition points should help us get wins.”

This season, Tucker will try to continue her college career by trying to obtain a scholarship to a four year college.

“I feel like I should be at a big college by now, but hopefully I can bring a championship to Georgia Highlands. Staying here for the extra year is going to work out in the end,” said Tucker.

Tucker said the biggest thing that she keeps in mind about being a leader is the mental part of it.

“Keep an open mind and don’t be scared to make a mistake. If they make a mistake, correct them that way they know what to do,” Tucker said.