FORT MYERS, Fla. – The postseason awards continue to roll in for redshirt junior Sarah Hansen (McKean, Pa./General McLane HS) and head coach Karl Smesko who each earned College Sports Madness All-Mid Major honors as announced by the website Wednesday morning.
Hansen’s name has become synonymous with College Sports Madness, earning Preseason Atlantic Sun All-Conference first team, weekly awards, A-Sun Player of the Year honors and now a nod on the All-Mid Major first team from the website. Smesko, the 2012 Kay Yow National Coach of the Year and 2013 Atlantic Sun Conference Coach of the Year, has also earned his fair share of accolades from College Sports Madness, receiving back-to-back CSM A-Sun Coach of the Year honors and now a second consecutive CSM Mid-Major Coach of the Year.
The awards continue to solidify Hansen as one of the best players in the history of FGCU women's basketball and the Atlantic Sun Conference, while also proving that the Eagles are led by a great basketball mind and one of the top coaches in the nation in Smesko.
Selected to the first team, Hansen was joined by Princeton’s Niveen Rasheed, Hampton’s Keiara Avant, Middle Tennessee's Ebony Rowe and High Point’s Cheyenne Parker. Smesko was tabbed as the Mid-Major Coach of the Year, Rasheed earned Mid-Major Player of the Year and Lehigh’s Kerry Kinek took home the title as the Mid-Major Freshman of the Year. Hansen was the only A-Sun representative listed on any of the four teams.
Currently averaging 16.5 points, 7.4 rebounds, 2.3 assists and 2.2 steals, the McKean, Pa. native is nearly a lock to finish in the top 10 in seven categories in the A-Sun Conference. In FGCU’s 70-64 loss to Stetson in the A-Sun Championship game (Mar. 9), Hansen buried a triple at the 16:08 mark to move her past former teammate Adrianne McNally (1,415) and into first place in the FGCU record books for career points. The 2013 A-Sun Scholar-Athlete of the Year currently has 1,427 career points with one year of eligibility remaining.
Smesko, who was named College Sports Madness A-Sun Coach of the Year on Friday (Mar. 1), led his team to a regular season conference crown for the fourth time in the program’s existence as his squad amassed a second consecutive perfect 18-0 conference mark earning him Coach of the Year honors from the conference for the third straight year (fourth in five seasons). The Green and Blue, who have the most wins (27) of any of the 13 Division I institutions in Florida, have won 13+ A-Sun games in six straight seasons, are 100-12 in conference play over the last six years and have won 70 of their last 76 Atlantic Sun regular season games (over the past four seasons).
The Eagles (27-6) will be in action next when they participate in their sixth consecutive Division I postseason tournament in a little over a week. On Monday, March 18 (7 p.m.), FGCU will find out if they will be awarded an at-large berth to the NCAA Tournament, but if not the Green and Blue will be participating in the WNIT for the fifth time in program history. The WNIT bracket will be announced late Monday night.
Fans can follow FGCU on Twitter (@FGCU_WBB), Instagram (@FGCUWbb) and on Facebook by liking FGCU Women’s Basketball (www.Facebook.com/FGCUWbb).
College Sports Madness Women's Basketball 2012-2013 All-Mid Major Teams
Player of the Year: Niveen Rasheed, Princeton
Freshman of the Year: Kerry Kinek, Lehigh
Coach of the Year: Karl Smesko, FGCU
First Team All-Mid Major
Sarah Hansen, FGCU
Niveen Rasheed, Princeton
Keiara Avant, Hampton
Ebony Rowe, Middle Tennessee
Cheyenne Parker, High Point
Second Team All-Mid Major
Jasmine Newsome, UT-Martin
D'shara Strange, Northern Colorado
Amanda Hyde, Fort Wayne
Jade Geif, Navy
Sophia Aleksandravicius, Davidson
Third Team All-Mid Major
Chantell Alford, Boston Univ.
Kevi Luper, Oral Roberts
Ebone Henry, Albany
Kamilah Martin, Hawaii
Chastity Gooch, Western Kentucky
Fourth Team All-Mid Major
Dequesha McClanahan, Winthrop
Te'era Williams, Texas Southern
Sammie Jensen, Utah Valley
Alli Williams, St. Francis (Pa.)
Jade Barber, Eastern Kentucky