AWARDS: @UTTylerWBB players honored with ASC accolades
Photo by: Lang White
Photo by: Lang White

Monday, February 26, 2018
by Wes Bloomquist | wbloomquist@uttyler.edu

TYLER – UT Tyler senior Alexus Bertrand was named the American Southwest Conference East Division Defensive Player of the Year, while Alex Kochner and Carissa Spiker earned ASC East Division First Team honors to highlight six Patriots who were selected for postseason honors by the conference coaches. Additionally, seniors Demi Cumby and Brittany Johnson were named to the ASC East Second Team and junior Bianca Valderrama was an honorable mention selection.

UT Tyler finished the 2017-18 season with a 17-9 record and with a trip to the postseason for the 11th straight season. The Patriots were 13-5 in ASC play and finished second in the ASC East Division. ASC All-Conference History

A senior from Clear Lake, Kochner earned ASC East First Team honors after leading the Patriots with 13.1 points and 8.8 rebounds per game. She finished the year with nine double-doubles, including leading the Patriots with 26 points and a career-high 15 rebounds in the ASC Championship quarterfinals. She also earned ASC All-Conference honorable mention as a junior.

“Alex was our most consistent rebounder and scorer,” UT Tyler head coach Kendra Hassell said. “She is very difficult to stop on the offensive end, but her ability to grab tough rebounds might be the most impressive part of her game. I felt like Alex finished the season playing her best basketball. I have no doubt there was a correlation between that and our success in East division play. She’s the type of player that makes those around her better.”

Bertrand completed her final year with the Patriots leading the team with 47 steals and 93 assists as the team’s point guard. A Mesquite native, Bertrand had a career-high five steals in a win over Louisiana College where she also scored 14 points and had five assists in the all-around great performance. She averaged 6.5 points, 3.7 assists and 1.9 steals per game for the Patriots in her fourth year with the program where she had three or more steals in eight games.

“Alexus has always been passionate about playing defense and I’m happy that the conference recognized that,” Hassell said. “She is a great on-ball defender that has the ability to make ball-handlers extremely uncomfortable. Most games she had to defend our opponents’ top scoring guard. The energy she played with consistently led to deflections, jump balls, and steals.”

A sophomore from Sanger, Spiker was the team’s leading reserve for the first part of the season before stepping into and thriving in a starting role the final two months. Spiker completed her second season with the Patriots averaging 11.2 points and 4.9 rebounds per game, including scoring a career-high 25 points against LeTourneau. She had 12 points in the final game of the season at the ASC tournament and finished with 18 double-digit scoring performances.

“Carissa is a versatile player,” Hassell said. “We called on her to run multiple positions this year and she did a great job of stepping into any of those spots. Carissa’s strength and ability to get to the rim make her very difficult to guard. I look for her to continue growing and feel like she has potential to be an even bigger threat for us next season.”

A Nacogdoches native, Johnson was named to the ASC East All-Defensive Team and to its second team. Johnson finished the year averaging 11.6 points per game and leading the Patriots with 60 3-pointers. She shot 33.1 percent from beyond the arc and had 11 games with three or more 3-pointers in a game. She had a five 3-pointers in four games, including in the regular-season finale where she was 5-for-9 on 3-pointers and scored a career-high 21 points. Cumby completed her final year at UT Tyler averaging 8.8 points and 4.4 rebounds per game. An Athens native, she scored a career-high 24 points after going 6-for-9 on 3-pointers in a sensational game at Ozarks in December and then had 13 points and six rebounds to help the Patriots to a road win at East Texas Baptist. Valderrama led the UT Tyler reserves throughout the season by averaging 8.7 points and 5.5 rebounds per game. A junior from Corpus Christi, Valderrama came off the bench in 22 of 26 games in her first season at UT Tyler and scored in double digits in the final nine games of the regular season. She scored a career-high 18 points in a win over LeTourneau and had nine rebounds against McMurry and Belhaven.

All-Conference Team

Name Cl. Pos. School Hometown
Victoria Pena So. G UT Dallas Helotes, Texas
Hannah Holt So. G Mary Hardin-Baylor Lumberton, Texas
Kendall Rollins So. G Mary Hardin-Baylor Fulshear, Texas
Kim Childress So. F East Texas Baptist Highlands Ranch, Colo.
Jaela Dejean 2 Sr. G Concordia Texas Houston, Texas

Two-Time All-Conference2 
 
All-Division Teams
East Division
Player of the Year – Victoria Pena, UT Dallas
Freshman of the Year – Raenett Hughes, UT Dallas
Newcomer of the Year – Kim Childress, East Texas Baptist
Defensive Player of the Year – Alexus Bertrand, UT Tyler
Sportsmanship Athlete of the Year – McKenzie Petty, UT Dallas
Coach of the Year – Polly Thomason, UT Dallas 4
Four-Time East Division Coach of the Year
 
First Team

Name Cl. Pos. School Hometown
Victoria Pena So. G UT Dallas Helotes, Texas
Kim Childress So. F East Texas Baptist Highlands Ranch, Colo.
Alex Kochner Sr. G UT Tyler Clear Lake, Texas
Brooke Jones 2 Sr. C Louisiana College Covington, La.
Carissa Spiker So. G UT Tyler Sanger, Texas

 
Second Team

Name Cl. Pos. School Hometown
Kourtney McGhee 2 Sr. G Louisiana College Simmesport, La.
Raenett Hughes Fr. G UT Dallas College Station, Texas
Demi Cumby Sr. G UT Tyler Athens, Texas
Brittany Johnson Sr. G UT Tyler Nacogdoches, Texas
Hailey Ostrander Jr. G Ozarks Alma, Ark.

Two-Time East All- Division2
 
All-Freshman Team

Name Pos. School Hometown
Raenett Hughes G UT Dallas College Station, Texas
Keauna Whitfield G LeTourneau Rosebud, Texas
Alexa Boushey G UT Dallas Prosper, Texas
Kelley Skinner G UT Dallas Katy, Texas
Cassie Emerson F Ozarks Jasper, Ark.

 
All-Defensive Team

Name Cl. Pos. School Hometown
Alexus Bertrand 2 Sr. G UT Tyler Mesquite, Texas
Raenett Hughes Fr. G UT Dallas College Station, Texas
Kourtney McGhee Sr. G Louisiana College Simmesport, La.
Brittany Johnson Sr. G UT Tyler Nacogdoches, Texas
Brooke Jones Sr. C Louisiana College Covington, La.

Two-Time East All-Defensive Team2
 
Honorable Mention

Name Cl. Pos. School Hometown
AaLiyaha Thornton Jr. G Belhaven Hernando, Miss.
Ashley Reed Sr. G LeTourneau Cedar Hill, Texas
Madison McCoy Fr. G East Texas Baptist Highlands Ranch, Colo.
Madison Steele Sr. F UT Dallas Dripping Springs, Texas
Keauna Whitfield Fr G LeTourneau Rosebud, Texas
Erin Meeks Jr. C East Texas Baptist Orlando, Fla.
Kelley Skinner Fr. G UT Dallas Katy, Texas
Bianca Valderrama Jr. F UT Tyler Corpus Christi, Texas
Katy Boren Sr. G East Texas Baptist Lubbock, Texas
Alexa Boushey Fr. G UT Dallas Prosper, Texas

 
West Division
Player of the Year – Kendall Rollins, Mary Hardin-Baylor
Freshman of the Year – Chelsey Harris, Howard Payne
Newcomer of the Year – Monica Jones, McMurry
Defensive Player of the Year – Sham Hunter, McMurry
Sportsmanship Athlete of the Year – Haven Neal, Mary Hardin-Baylor 2
Coach of the Year – Brittany Densman-Roes, McMurry
Two-Time West Division Sportsmanship Athlete of the Year2
 
First Team

Name Cl. Pos. School Hometown
Kendall Rollins So. G Mary Hardin-Baylor Fulshear, Texas
Jaela Dejean 3 Jr. G Concordia Texas Houston, Texas
Hannah Holt So. G Mary Hardin-Baylor Lumberton, Texas
Sham Hunter 2 Sr. G McMurry Abilene, Texas
Skyler Reyna So. F McMurry San Antonio, Texas

Three-Time West All-Defensive Team/ Two-Time West All-Defensive Team2
 
Second Team

Name Cl. Pos. School Hometown
Valarie Matlock Jr. G Howard Payne Azle, Texas
Danie Mabry Sr. G Hardin-Simmons Winnsboro, Texas
Heidi Schroeder Sr. C Hardin-Simmons Montgomery, Texas
Mercedes Ellison Jr. G Concordia Texas Victoria, Texas
Alicia Blackwell So. G Mary Hardin-Baylor McKinney, Texas

 
All-Freshman Team

Name Pos. School Hometown
Chelsey Harris G Howard Payne Waco, Texas
Karlea Ritchie F Hardin-Simmons Wichita Falls, Texas
Sara Perez F Concordia Texas Dallas, Texas
Lindsay Carter G Concordia Texas Dodd City, Texas
Brooke Elliott G Mary Hardin-Baylor Georgetown, Texas

All-Defensive Team

Name Cl. Pos. School Hometown
Sham Hunter Sr. G McMurry Abilene, Texas
Jaela Dejean 2 Sr. G Concordia Texas Houston, Texas
Valarie Matlock 2 Jr. G Howard Payne Azle, Texas
Mercedes Ellison Jr. G Concordia Texas Victoria, Texas
Alicia Blackwell So. G Mary Hardin-Baylor McKinney, Texas
Hannah Holt So. G Mary Hardin-Baylor Lumberton, Texas

Two-Time West All-Defensive Team2
 
Honorable Mention

Name Cl. Pos. School Hometown
Payton Berger So. F Concordia Texas Azle, Texas
Presley McKethan Sr. G Howard Payne Robinson, Texas
Annie Lenoir So. G Sul Ross State Brady, Texas
Addison Garcia Jr. C Hardin-Simmons The Colony, Texas
Jada Evans Sr. G Howard Payne Harker Heights, Texas