AMHERST, N.Y. — Just talking to Cierra Dillard and Dontay Caruthers, you'd think they were siblings. They're constantly teasing each other and joking around while laughing uncontrollably.
The two grew up together in Rochester and followed each other's high school careers closely.
Dillard went to Gates Chili while Caruthers played at East high school. They met when they were in eighth grade through their older brothers who were always playing each other.
Just like any athlete and pair of best friends, they're always trying to one-up each other.
"What was your average in high school? He was like .2 ahead of me and he dropped 50 and we were both averaging like 27 a game and I was so mad so I was like okay we have to go win the championship," Dillard recalled one of their high school memories.
"I said well is she has the better team then I have to average more points just to even it out," Caruthers laughed.
After high school, they went their separate ways. Dillard went to UMass while Caruthers went to junior college, first at Midland Community College in Texas then Indian Hills Community College in Iowa. As fate would have it, they both wanted a change and started exploring their options.
Little did they know, they both ended up on a visit at UB on the exact same day.
"We didn't plan it at all and I was like what are you doing here?", Dillard said.
And in typical competitive form, when one committed to UB, the other couldn't say no.
"I committed that night and he committed that morning," Dillard explained.
"I was like it doesn't matter what you do. I'm going to do it right next to you," Caruthers said.
They already shared an NCAA tournament run together in 2018 as the UB men won their first tournament game by beating Arizona while the women went to the Sweet 16. And this year, they're looking for more as a way to close out their senior season and college careers.