|Miller, four Falcons earn MAC honors|
|Written by By Sentinel Sports Staff|
|Tuesday, 06 March 2012 12:19|
CLEVELAND —Curt Miller and four Bowling Green women’s basketball players have earned recognition from the Mid-American Conference.
Miller, in his 11th season with the Falcons, has been named the coach of the year for a league-record sixth time while Alexis Rogers was a first-team all-conference selection, Chrissy Steffen and Jessica Slagle were named to the second-team, and Jasmine Matthews was selected to the all-freshman team.
All four players earn all-conference accolades for the first time in their respective BG careers.
Miller and his staff have performed one of the finest coaching jobs of their BGSU tenure in 2011-12. After losing six seniors – including four starters – from last year’s team, Miller and Company had nine freshman and sophomores on the 2011-12 roster. Only one player, Steffen, had ever started a collegiate game prior to the season opener. But, Miller guided the Falcons to a 14-2 MAC record and the program’s eighth consecutive division title. And, BGSU won the MAC’s overall regular-season title outright for the seventh time in those eight seasons.
Miller enters the MAC tournament with a record of 258-90 (.741) in his head-coaching career, all with the Falcons. In conference regular-season play, Miller has guided the Falcons to a 135-41 mark (.767).
A redshirt sophomore, Rogers was named to the all-league first team in her first playing season with the Falcons. A transfer from Duke, she ranks second on the team in scoring, with 12.3 points per game, and leads the Falcons in rebounding, with 8.6 boards per game. Rogers led the Falcons in both categories in conference games, with 15.1 ppg and 9.6 rpg, and she was the only player ranked among the top-five in the MAC in both categories. In MAC games, Rogers finished fourth in scoring and second in rebounding.
Rogers has nine double-doubles this season to date, including seven in MAC play. She ranks second on the Falcons with 1.7 steals per game, and has a team-leading 92 offensive rebounds. Additionally, Rogers has stepped outside the arc to make 17 three-point field goals this season, tying her for third on the Falcons.
A senior, Slagle, is averaging 11.8 points per game on the year. After scoring in double digits five times over her first three seasons, the tri-captain has 17 double-figure games this year, including 13 in the last 19 games. Slagle has 2.4 assists and 1.6 steals per game, leading BG in the former and ranking fourth in the latter. She leads the team in free throws made and attempted (105-of-141) as well as free-throw percentage (.745). In MAC games, Slagle averaged 13.4 ppg to rank second on the team, and she lead the Falcons with 3.1 assists per outing against league foes.
A junior Steffen, leads the Falcons in scoring, with 13.2 ppg, and she also has 5.0 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.9 steals per contest. Steffen tops the team in steals, and she is second in assists and third in rebounding. She has a team-leading 20 double-digit scoring games this year, including a BG-best six games of 20 points or more, and has made 48 three-pointers to pace the Falcons in that category as well.
Steffen had 12.1 points and 5.8 boards per game in MAC contests, ranking third on the team in both categories. The lone returning starter from last year’s team, she has a career total of 827 points to lead all active Falcons.
Matthews is averaging 6.7 points per game this year, and is second on the Falcons with 45 three-pointers made. She has shot 32.6 percent from long range, and has keyed a BGSU defensive effort which has seen the Falcons hold the opponent under its scoring average in 13 of the 16 league games. Matthews had 8.0 ppg in MAC contests, and led the team with 29 long-range makes in league action. She has averaged 8.1 ppg since moving into the starting lineup 19 games ago.
Eastern Michigan’s Tavelyn James was named the MAC’s player of the year for the 2011-12 season. Northern Illinois newcomer Claire Jakubicek was voted the conference’s freshman of the year.
Toledo’s Andola Dortch was named the MAC’s defensive player of the year. Central Michigan’s Jalisa Olive won the MAC sixth-player-of-the-year award.
Rogers was joined on the All-MAC first-team by James, Buffalo’s Brittany Hedderson, Miami’s Courtney Osborn and Ohio’s Tenishia Benson.
The second team consisted of the BGSU duo of Slagle and Steffen, along with Dortch and UT teammate Yolanda Richardson and Akron’s Sina King.
The third team was Eastern Michigan’s Paige Redditt and Natachia Watkins, the Miami tandem of Maggie Boyer and Kirsten Olowinski and UT’s Courtney Ingersoll.
Honorable mention went to UA’s Taylor Ruper, Central Michigan’s Crystal Bradford and Taylor Johnson, Kent State’s Diamon Beckford and Western Michigan’s Maria Iaquaniello.
Matthews was joined on the all-freshman team by Jakubicek and the CMU trio of Bradford, Jessica Green and Jas’Mine Bracey.
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