March 5, 2001
LARAMIE, Wyo. -
The Mountain West Conference announced its 2000-01 women's basketball awards today. The league's eight head coaches selected the all-conference team, coach, player, newcomer and defensive player of the year awards.
After leading Utah to a 14-0 conference record and its second straight MWC regular-season title, Elaine Elliott was named 2001 Mountain West Conference Women's Basketball Coach of the Year. UNLV junior forward Linda Fr?hlich and Utah senior forward Amy Ewert were honored as Players of the Year. Fr?hlich garnered Player of the Year honors for the second straight year, while Ewert also picked up the league's Defensive Player of the Year award. The Newcomer of the Year honor went to BYU freshman guard Julie Whetten.
Six institutions are represented on the first- and second teams, and five appear on the third. The first and second teams breakdown with one senior, two juniors and two sophomores, while the third team is comprised of three seniors, a junior and a sophomore. All five first team honorees were repeat selections to the all-conference list, while three members of the second team and another three from the third team earned all-conference accolades last year.
Regular-season champion Utah placed three individuals on the all-conference list as junior Lauren Beckman and senior Amy Ewert, both second team members in 1999-00, made the first team. Ute senior Kristina Andersen, a second team selection last year, earned third-team honors.
Colorado State was represented on each of the three teams. Sophomore Ashley Augspurger, a MWC all-newcomer as a freshman last season, was a first team selection and senior Heather Haanen, a first-team selection a year ago, was named to the third team. Ram junior Angie Gorton earned all-conference honors for the first time in her career as a second team honoree.
UNLV had two student-athletes honored on the all-conference list in first team selection Linda Fr?hlich, the only MWC student-athlete to earn first-team honors for the second straight year, and third team member Constance Jinks. BYU sophomore Erin Thorn, last year's Freshman of the Year, rounded out the first team, while teammate Stacy Jensen was a second team selection. New Mexico was represented by a pair of second-team honorees in Miranda Sanchez, a first team selection last year, and the 1999-00 MWC Newcomer of the Year Jordan Adams.
San Diego State sophomore Jamey Cox moved from an all-newcomer last year to a second team selection this season, and Aztec junior Atim Otii garnered all-conference honors for the first time as a third team selection. Wyoming senior Jessica Gibbs also made her first appearance on the all-conference list as a third team member.
COACH OF THE YEAR ELAINE ELLIOTT, UTAH
Utah head coach Elaine Elliott has a career record of 371-150 for a .712 win percentage in 18 seasons with the Utes. Favored to win the title in the preseason poll, Elliott's 2000-01 squad became just the second team in Utah history to go unbeaten in conference play (the 1976-77 Ute squad went 13-0 in the Intermountain Athletic Conference). Under Elliott's direction, the Utes are currently No. 13 in the national polls and have a record 16 straight regular season conference victories. After winning the inaugural MWC Championship last year, Utah has won 19 straight vs. conference opponents. This year's title marked the sixth straight season the Utes have won at least a share of the conference crown.
CO-PLAYER OF THE YEAR LINDA FR?HLICH, UNLV
The league leader in points and rebounds for the second straight season, Linda Fr?hlich finished regular-season play averaging 19.6 points and 9.4 rebounds per game. Fr?hlich also leads the league in three-point shooting percentage (43.8, 35-80), ranks third in blocked shots (1.48 bpg) and fourth in steals (2.17 spg). She recorded her league-leading 40th career double-double with 27 points and 15 rebounds vs. Wyoming on Mar. 1, and leads the league with eight 20-point games and eight 10-rebound games this season. She has consistently been a "go to" player for the Rebels, playing six 40-minute regulation games this season and ranking third in the league for minutes played with 34.7 per game, despite playing most of the year with a fractured thumb.
CO-PLAYER OF THE YEAR AND DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR AMY EWERT, UTAH
Amy Ewert's role for Utah has also been one of consistency. A starter in every game this season, Ewert leads the team in assists (3.26 apg) and steals (2.56 spg), and ranks in the MWC top 10 in several statistical categories, including steals (2nd, 2.56 per game), field goal percentage (5th, 49.7 percent), assists (9th, 3.26 per game) and assist/turnover ratio (6th, 1.42). In conference games, Ewert ranks 14th in the league in scoring at 10.1 points per game. Her defensive ability helped the Utes maintain the nation's top scoring defense and field goal percentage-defense, allowing opponents to score just 49.4 points per game and shoot a meager 33.3 percent from the field.
NEWCOMER OF THE YEAR JULIE WHETTEN, BYU
Despite playing behind one of the best backcourts in the conference in Erin Thorn and Stacy Jensen, Julie Whetten averaged 6.1 points, 2.2 assists and 2.0 rebounds while playing just over 18 minutes per game in conference play. A 41.4 percent three-point shooter in MWC games, Whetten came off the bench to score a career-high 15 points vs. Wyoming on Feb. 17 and reached double-figures on four occasions during the season.
All Mountain West Conference First Team Honorees:
Joining Fr?hlich and Ewert on the first team are three players who received all-conference recognition last season. BYU's Erin Thorn was an all-newcomer pick and Freshman of the Year in 1999-00. Currently ranked second in the league in scoring at 16 points per game, Thorn led the conference in scoring for the first half of the season. In conference games, she is third in MWC scoring with 14.6 points per contest. She is first in the MWC and ranks in the top 10 nationally for three-pointers made at 3.0 per game.
Utah's Lauren Beckman, a second team selection in 1999-00, was the only MWC player to average a double-double in points and rebounds at the midway point of the conference season. She currently ranks sixth in the league in scoring at 12.3 points per game, but she upped her total to 15 points per game in conference play-good for second in the league. Beckman is also second in the league in field goal percentage (55.9 percent), and third in the MWC in rebounding (8.3) and blocked shots (1.29).
Colorado State's Ashley Augspurger is a key element of the Rams balanced attack. A member of the MWC all-newcomer team last season, Augspurger leads three Rams averaging double figures with 11.4 points per game. In conference games, Augspurger ranks 12th in league scoring at 10.4 ppg. She is fourth in the conference in three-point shooting percentage (41.7 percent) and fifth in three-pointers made per game (1.79).
2000-01 All-Mountain West Conference Women's Basketball Team
(selected by head coaches)
First-Team All-Mountain West
*Linda Fr?hlich, UNLV, Jr., 6-2, F, Oldendorf, Germany (Vincent-Lubeck)
#%Erin Thorn, BYU, So., 5-10, G, Orem, Utah (Mountain View HS)
#Amy Ewert, Utah, Sr., 6-0, F/G, Vancouver, B.C. (Kitsilano)
#Lauren Beckman, Utah, Jr., 6-2, F/C, Elko, Nev. (Elko HS)
%Ashley Augspurger, Colorado State, So., 6-1, F, Lakewood, Colo. (Wheat Ridge HS)
Second-Team All-Mountain West
*Miranda Sanchez, New Mexico, Sr., 6-1, F, Albuquerque, N.M. (Sandia HS)
%Jordan Adams, New Mexico, So., 6-3, C, Overton, Nev. (Moapa Valley HS)
%Jamey Cox, San Diego State, So., 5-7, G, Waterloo, Iowa (West HS)
Angie Gorton, Colorado State, Jr., 6-0, F, Eaufala, Okla. (Canadian HS)
Stacy Jensen, BYU, Jr., 5-6, G, West Jordan, Utah (West Jordan HS)
Third-Team All-Mountain West
%Constance Jinks, UNLV, So., 5-6, G, Chicago, Ill. (Morgan Park HS)
#Kristina Andersen, Utah, Sr., 6-1, F, Eugene, Ore. (Marist HS)
*Heather Haanen, Colorado State, Sr., 5-11, F, Plymouth, Minn. (Armstrong HS)
Jessica Gibbs, Wyoming, Sr., 6-1, F, Wells, Nev. (Southern Idaho)
Atim Otii, San Diego State, Jr., 6-0, F, Denver, Colo. (East HS)
Co-Players of the Year - Linda Fr?hlich, UNLV and Amy Ewert, Utah
Newcomer of the Year - Julie Whetten, BYU
Defensive Player of the Year - Amy Ewert, Utah
Coach of the Year - Elaine Elliott, Utah
*1999-00 first team selection
#1999-00 second team selection
%1999-00 newcomer team selection