The Richmond Register

Sports

March 6, 2013

OVC HOOPS: Colonels, Lady Colonels pick up post-season honors

RICHMOND — Three Eastern Kentucky men’s basketball players were honored by the Ohio Valley Conference Monday.

Mike DiNunno earned First-Team All-OVC honors, while Glenn Cosey and Corey Walden were chosen to the OVC All-Newcomer Team.

DiNunno currently leads the Colonels in scoring (15.4 ppg), assists (4.3 apg), steals (2.1 spg) and 3-pointers (81). The senior is eighth in the OVC in scoring, first in steals, fifth in assists, tied for third in free throw percentage (86.4 percent), sixth in assist-to-turnover ratio and eighth in 3-point field goal percentage.

The Chicago native was named OVC Player of the Week on Dec. 23. He has scored in double figures 25 times in 30 games. DiNunno has dished out six or more assists eight times and has had four or more steals in five games. He has scored a season-high 24 points four times this season. He set season-bests with nine assists and seven rebounds against Austin Peay.

DiNunno is the first Colonel selected first team all-conference since Mike Rose in 2008-09.

Cosey was chosen as the OVC Newcomer of the Week a league-high six times. The junior has contributed 15.2 points, 3.2 assists and 3.1 rebounds a game. He is 10th in the OVC in scoring, second in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.5), seventh in three-point field goal percentage (38.9 percent), ninth in steals (1.6 spg), 11th in assists and 11th in free throw percentage (79 percent).

The Flint, Mich., native has scored in double figures 21 times in 25 games.  Cosey scored a season-high 23 points in Eastern’s win at Chattanooga. He’s dished out five assists on four occasions and has nailed six 3-pointers three times.

Walden, a four-time OVC Newcomer of the Week, averages 12.6 points, 3.4 rebounds and 1.6 steals per game. He stands 19th in the conference in scoring, first in free throw percentage (89.2 percent), 10th in steals and 11th in field goal percentage (50.8 percent).

The redshirt sophomore is seventh in the nation in free-throw shooting. He scored 21 points at No. 10 Illinois in December and set a career-high with 28 points at Jacksonville State in January. He tied his career-best with six steals at Tennessee Tech.

The third-seeded Colonels will play in the OVC quarterfinals on Thursday at 9 p.m. ET.  EKU will face off with the winner of the No. 6 seed Southeast Missouri/No. 7 seed Eastern Illinois game.

Jones named Second-Team All-OVC

Eastern Kentucky University senior women’s basketball player Alex Jones has been named Second-Team All-Ohio Valley Conference selection, the league office announced on Tuesday.

Jones is currently averaging 9.2 points-per-game for the Lady Colonels, and she leads the OVC at 10.3 rebounds-per-game. The native of Elizabethtown is now a three-time second team All-OVC performer. She earned all-conference honors as a freshman in 2009-10 and a sophomore in 2010-11.

Jones has been particularly strong for the Lady Colonels down the homestretch. She has grabbed double-digit rebounds in 11 consecutive games and has record double-doubles in seven of those 11 games. She is averaging 12.1 rebounds-per-game against OVC competition. In a win over Austin Peay in the regular season home finale, Jones poured in a season-high 18 points and grabbed a career-high 21 rebounds as EKU wrapped up a 13-1 record at McBrayer Arena this season.

One of the most prolific players in program history, Jones enters Wednesday’s first round OVC Tournament game versus Murray State with 1,018 career rebounds, nine shy of breaking Laphelia Doss’s EKU record. Jones has also posted 36 career double-doubles, which is three shy of Doss’s career mark in that category. She ranks 14th all-time at EKU in points (1,264), fourth in blocks (77), fourth in free throws made (418), eighth in free throw percentage (.756) and 10th in field goal percentage (.443).

UT Martin guard Jasmine Newsome was voted the 2012-13 OVC Player of the Year by conference head coaches and sports information directors, while Eastern Illinois head coach Lee Buchanan was tabbed the OVC Coach of the Year.

Jones will lead the No. 5 seed Lady Colonels (17-10, 11-5 OVC) against Murray State (16-12, 8-8 OVC) in the first round of the OVC Tournament on Wednesday, March 6, at 1:00 p.m. ET.

EKU’s Lewis’ dunk nominated for Play of the Year

Eastern Kentucky University junior guard Marcus Lewis’ alley-oop dunk against Southeast Missouri State on Feb. 2 has been nominated for the GEICO Play of the Year, Intersport announced earlier this week.

The play, which also featured a precision pass from Glenn Cosey, rose to as high as No. 3 on ESPN’s SportsCenter Top-10.

Each week for eight weeks, four incredible college basketball plays will be nominated as the GEICO Play of the Year. Each week’s winner will  be determined by fan voting through the official Facebook page (facebook.com/BestofCollegeBasketball). The eight finalists will compete in a week-long competition to determine the GEICO Play of the Year. The winner will be announced during the GEICO Best of College Basketball special which airs April 6 on CBS.

In addition to recognizing the season’s top plays, the one-hour CBS special will relive the season’s greatest moments, players and traditions.

Eastern Kentucky was inbounding the ball beneath the SEMO basket midway through the second half. Lewis stood near the half-court line with  his hands on his hips, looking like he had no intention in being involved in the play. When his defender glanced the other way, Lewis streaked to the basket, leaped and threw down a lob at full-extension causing the Colonels’ bench to erupt.

Lewis’ incredible cram is competing against three other plays in Week Eight, including a game-winning 3-pointer by UC Irvine’s Michael Wilder,  a half-court bomb by SF State’s Decensae White and a follow-up slam by Florida Gulf Coast’s Eddie Murray.

To watch or support Lewis, visit  www.f acebook.com/BestofCollegeBasketball. Fans can also share their vote with Facebook friends. Week Eight voting opened today and ends Monday, March 11, at 11:59 a.m. ET.

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