UTM new gals already among elite

UTM new gals already among elite
Heather Butler and Jasmine Newsome piled up some impressive accolades as freshman basketball players at UT Martin.
The two Skyhawk guards have been recognized as adidas® Freshman of the Week five times each and both players have also been recognized as the league’s Player and Freshman of the Week in the same week.
However, those weekly honors pale in comparison to the latest hardware for Butler — a Gibson County product — and Newsome of Millington.
Butler was named the Ohio Valley Conference’s Freshman of the Year and Newsome was named the league’s Co-Defensive Player of the Year on Tuesday. Butler and Newsome were also named to the All-OVC first team and the OVC’s All-Newcomer team.
“Heather Butler and Jasmine Newsome each bring different things to the table, but they have been effective all season long,” UT Martin head basketball coach Kevin McMillan said.
The other awards announced on Monday told of Morehead State’s Chynna Bozeman as the OVC Player of the Year for the second straight campaign and Tennessee Tech’s Sytia Messer as the Coach of the Year.
Butler is averaging 19 points, 3.8 assists and 2.9 rebounds per game. She shoots 40 percent from the field and 36 percent from 3-point range.
Butler is the nation’s leading freshman scorer and is 21st overall in scoring. She is also ranked 13th in the nation for 3-point field goals made per game (2.9).
Newsome is averaging 17.6 points, 4.2 rebounds and 4.1 assists per game. She shoots 41 percent from the field, 36 percent from 3-point range and 75 percent from the free throw line. Newsome leads the team in steals with 65 and, at 5-foot-7-inches tall, she has seven blocks to her credit.
Newsome is the nation’s third leading freshman scorer and the 51st leading scorer in the nation.
It is the first time that the Defensive Player of the Year honor has been shared by two players. Hayes has brought down 213 boards this season, including 156 in conference play.
Bozeman earns her second straight OVC Player of the Year award, marking the fifth time in conference history an Eagle has taken the honor. The senior guard leads the league while ranking 13th in the nation with 20.8 points per game while also putting up 23.7 points per conference outing. Bozeman has reached double-digits in all but three games this season, including her last 17 contests.
 Messer, who is in her second year at the helm of the Tennessee Tech program, earns Coach of the Year honors after guiding her team to its 16th OVC regular-season title after being predicted to finish fourth. It was the first regular-season crown for Tech since the 2005-06 season.
Joining Bozeman, Butler, Hayes and Newsome on the 2010-11 All-OVC First Team is Eastern Illinois sophomore guard Ta’Kenya Nixon.
The 2010-11 All-OVC second team featured four first time honorees. Making her second straight appearance on the second team is Eastern Kentucky sophomore Alex Jones. Also making the squad are Morehead State sophomore Ashar Harris, Eastern Illinois sophomore Mariah King, Austin Peay junior Whitney Hanley and Murray State sophomore  Mariah Robinson.
Joining Butler and Newsome on the All-Newcomer team are Murray State redshirt freshman guard Jessica Winfrey, Tennessee Tech freshman Molly Heady, Eastern Kentucky freshman Marie Carpenter and Tennessee State freshman Tayla Foster.


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