March 10, 2009

PALMER NAMED SLC NEWCOMER OF THE YEAR

Texas A&M-Corpus Christi junior guard Kevin Palmer has been named the Southland Conference Newcomer of the Year as well as first-team All-Southland Conference in men's basketball the league announced on Tuesday. Sophomore Justin Palmer was named honorable mention All-SLC.

Palmer led the Southland Conference in scoring both in overall games and the SLC action earning NABC All-District 23 first-team honors. On the year, the transfer from Cecil Community College in Maryland averaged 17.8 points a game overall, while upping his average to 19.2 points a game in league play. His 551 total points led the Southland Conference.

Palmer was second in the league and tenth in the nation with 2.7 steals a game shattering the single-season steal mark with 82. The previous mark was 56. He finished second on the team in rebounding at 5.2 rebounds. Palmer's 80.8% free-throw shooting was third in the league.

Reynolds was named honorable mention All-SLC. He was third on the team in scoring with 8.4 points a game, while shooting a team-best 46.9% on the season. His 4.6 rebounds a game were third on the team.

Other superlative winners were SLC Player of the Year Matt Kingsley of Stephen F. Austin and Freshman of the Year Fred Hunter of Nicholls. Hunter's head coach J.P. Piper was the SLC Coach of the Year.

Kingsley was the only player in the league to finish in the top five in points, rebounds, and shooting percentage. The fifth-year senior finished with 15.9 points a game and 7.5 rebounds to lead SFA to the regular-season title. He also shot 55.2%.

Hunter helped turnaround the Colonels starting 28-of-29 games. He average 11 points a game in SLC play as Nicholls placed second in thee regular season with a 12-4 mark. His 55.5% shooting percentage was fourth in the league and he added 105 rebounds.

Piper in his fifth season at Nicholls led the team to a nine 19-10 mark overall and a 12-4 record in the league. The Colonels placed second in the regular season earning their first trip to the SLC tournament since. 2001. Piper is one of 10 finalists for the Hugh Durham National Coach of the Year Award.

2008-09 Men's Basketball All-Southland Conference Teams

First Team School Pos. Cl. Hometown

Matt Kingsley Stephen F. Austin C Sr. Houston, Texas

Kevin Palmer Texas A&M-Corpus Christi G/F Jr. Baltimore, Md.

Anthony Vereen UT Arlington F Sr. Houston, Texas

Ryan Bathie Nicholls State F Sr. Melton, Australia

Corey Allmond Sam Houston State G Jr. Oxon Hill, Md.

Second Team

Marquez Haynes UT Arlington F/G Jr. Irving, Texas

Ashton Mitchell Sam Houston State G Jr. New Orleans, La.

Josh Alexander Stephen F. Austin G Sr. Shreveport, La.

Brandon Bush Texas State F Sr. Houston, Texas

Kenny Dawkins Lamar G Sr. Holly Springs, Miss.

Third Team

Anatoly Bose Nicholls State F So. Sydney, Australia

Travis Gabbidon UTSA G Sr. Phoenix, Ariz.

Devin Gibson UTSA G So. Houston, Texas

Roge'r Guignard UT Arlington G Jr. Mesquite, Texas

Jay Brown Lamar F Sr. Griffin, Ga.

Honorable Mention

John Pichon, McNeese State; Patrick Sullivan, Southeastern Louisiana; Omar Johnson, UTSA; Kleon Penn, McNeese State; Brandon McThay, Lamar; Brent Benson, Texas State; Marcus Pillow, Central Arkansas; Barkley Falkner, Sam Houston State; Justin Reynolds, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi; Corey Jefferson, Texas State.

Player of the Year: Matt Kingsley, Stephen F. Austin

Newcomer of the Year: Kevin Palmer, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi

Freshman of the Year: Fred Hunter, Nicholls State