WORCESTER, Mass. – With the first week of the college basketball season (Div. I, II and III) in the books, it is now time to unveil this week’s Worcester Area College Basketball Association (WACBA) honor roll, including our players and rookies of the week.
EDITORS NOTE: Noontime Sports (and NoontimeSports.com) will once again be the home to WACBA this winter, and will post the weekly awards every Tuesday morning. Make sure to follow us on Facebook and Twitter (@NoontimeSports and @NoonSportsBlog), while also keeping up with WACBA (@WACBAHoops), too.
Men’s Player of the Week: Sam Longwell (WPI, Sr.): Longwell became the 26th player in WPI history to reach the 1,000 career point milestone in the Engineers’ 66-55 season-opening victory against RPI. The senior tallied a game-best 20 points and reached the mark on a rare dunk early in the first half. Longwell is now 25th all-time on the Crimson and Gray scoring-list with 1,017 points.
Men’s Rookie of the Week: Obi Obiora (WPI, Fr.): Obiora burst onto the collegiate scene with 12 points and five rebounds as WPI kicked off the 2014-15 campaign with a 66-55 home triumph over RPI.
Women’s Player of the Week: Kate Gillespie (Holy Cross, Jr.): Gillespie recorded career highs in points (23), rebounds (5), assists (5) and tied her career high in three pointers made (5) in the loss to Manhattan. She connected on a career-best 9-of-16 from the field (56.3%) and drained 5-of-9 from downtown (55.6%). Gillespie played in a career-high 35 minutes.
Women’s Rookie of the Week: Ama Biney (WPI, Fr.): Biney stuffed the stat sheets with six points, seven rebounds and a pair of assists in her season debut against Worcester State on Saturday. The freshman collected a defensive rebound and took it coast-to-coast and then drew a key charge – all in the final 1:15 of WPI’s 55-48 victory over the Lancers
Justin Burrell (Holy Cross, Sr.): Burrell led the team with 16 points, four assists and three steals in the Crusaders’ victory over No. 25 Harvard. He scored eight of the Crusaders’ final 15 points in the last eight minutes, as Holy Cross rallied from a 48-43 deficit to win. Burrell hit a pair of free throws with 2:01 remaining to give the Crusaders the lead for good (56-55).
Kate Doherty (Holy Cross, Fr.): In her first collegiate game, Doherty earned the start, playing 31 minutes and recording six points, three rebounds and an assist. Her six points came on a pair of three-pointers.
Trafficia Warburton (Anna Maria, Sr.): Warburton tallied a double-double of 20 points and 16 rebounds in the AMCATS’ first outing of 2014-15. The senior forward shot 47.1 percent from the floor (8-for-17) with a three-pointer and hit three free throws while also adding three steals and a block.
Pat Bradanese (Anna Maria, Jr.): Bradanese opened the 2014-15 season with back-to-back team-leading performances, as he scored 24 points in the team’s 86-83 win against Southern Maine on Saturday and added 19 points in the Conn. College Coaches vs. Cancer Tip-Off Tournament championship game on Sunday. Bradanese shot 61.5 percent from the floor (16-26), including an impressive 9-for-14 performance from three-point range (64.3 percent). The junior guard also added 4.0 rebounds per game and 1.5 assists per game en route to All-Tournament team honors.
Kwame Lee (Fitchburg State, Fr.): Lee averaged 18 points per game while leading Fitchburg State to a 2-0 opening weekend. The first-year Falcon led all scorers with 25 points and eight rebounds in the Green & Gold’s win over Suffolk on Saturday, while tying for a team-high 11 points with six boards on Sunday in Fitchburg State’s win over Roger Williams. Lee was named tournament MVP as the Falcons took top honors in the RWU/Courtyard by Marriott Tipoff.
Matt Langadas (Nichols College, Sr.): Langadas averaged 19 points to help the Bison open the season 1-1 at the Babson Invitational. He led the Bison with 27 points – including six triples – in a blowout win over Salve Regina on Sunday, less than 24 hours after scoring 11 against Bates.
Amber Litwinko (Nichols College, Sr.): Senior captain Amber Litwinko scored 14 of her team-high 19 points in the second half – including knocking down the tying and go-ahead free throws with two seconds remaining – and also grabbed 13 rebounds for the Bison. She scored eight of the final 11 points for the Bison. Litwinko also registered five assists, one steal and one block in 37 minutes.
Brendan Rios (Worcester State, Sr.): Averaged 16 points and 6.5 rebounds in a 1-1 week for the Lancers and was named to the All-Tournament team at the Wesleyan Herb Kenny Tip-Off Tournament Scored 11 points and added five rebounds in a 69-51 victory over Becker College while also adding 21 points and eight rebounds in a 61-60 setback to Wesleyan College.
Julie Frankian (Worcester State, Sr.): Averaged 17.5 points and 3.5 rebounds in a 1-1 week for the Lancers while earning All-Worcester City Tournament Team accolades which included 20 points and four rebounds in a 55-48 setback to WPI to go with 15 points in the 80-24 victory over Becker College.
Dani Davis (WPI, Sr.): Davis was named MVP of the Worcester City Tournament after averaging 17.5 points and 6.5 rebounds as the Engineers nabbed their sixth city tournament crown, their first since 2011. The senior poured in 18 points in a championship game – a 75-59 victory over NEWMAC rival Clark, a day after leading the way with 17 points in a 55-48 triumph against Worcester State in the first round.