March 5, 2009

Daniel Northern named to All-OVC team, Kevin Murphy earns All-Newcomer spot

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. -- Tennessee Tech senior Daniel Northern was named second-team all-conference and freshman Kevin Murphy earned a spot on the league's all-newcomer team when the Ohio Valley Conference anounced the annual men's basketball awards Thursday night. The honors were announced on the eve of the OVC Tournament semifinals in Nashville.

Northern, a 6-9 center from Warner-Robins, Ga., was a preseason all-OVC selection and lived up to that billing with his selection to the post-season squad. He led Tech and ranked 14th in the league in scoring with 12.6 points per game, and was the conference leader in blocked shots. He also ranked second in the conference in rebounding and 10th in field goal percentage.

Murphy, a 6-6 forward from Fairburn, Ga., came on strong in the second half of the season, averaging 9.6 points per game overall and 10.2 against the conference. His scoring average was the ninth-best scoring aveage in history for a Tech freshman, and the highest in 21 years. The former Creekside High School standout ranked 30th in the conference in scoring, third among all freshmen, and was also listed fifth in the conference in 3-point percentage.

For the second straight year UT Martin senior guard Lester Hudson was tabbed Ohio Valley Conference Player of the Year, in voting by the league's head coaches and sports information directors. Skyhawks coach Bret Campbell was named OVC Coach of the Year for the first time.

The two other top award winners included Morehead State sophomore center Kenneth Faried, who was named the inaugural OVC Defensive Player of the Year, and Murray State forward Ivan Aska who was tabbed OVC Freshman of the Year.

The 2008-09 All-OVC first-team includes Hudson, the Player of the Year, and Faried, the Defensive Player of the Year. Joining them is Austin Peay senior forward Drake Reed, Eastern Kentucky guard Mike Rose and Morehead State senior forward Leon Buchanan.

Five individuals were named to the All-OVC second team including Tennessee State sophomore guard Gerald Robinson, Jr. (an All-Newcomer pick last season), Austin Peay junior guard Wes Channels, Eastern Illinois junior guard Romain Martin (the 2007 OVC Freshman of the Year), Murray State junior forward Danero Thomas and Northern.

Six players were selected to the OVC All-Newcomer Team, which was comprised of first-year players in the league. That included two players from Murray State - Aska, who was named OVC Freshman of the Year, and sophomore guard Isacc Miles (a transfer from Creighton). The team also included UT Martin junior guard Delrico Lane, Tennessee State freshman guard Parker Smith, Eastern Illinois junior guard T.J. Marion and Murphy.


OVC Player of the Year: Lester Hudson, UT Martin
OVC Defensive Player of the Year: Kenneth Faried, Morehead State
OVC Freshmen of the Year: Ivan Aska, Murray State
OVC Coach of the Year: Bret Campbell, UT Martin

ALL-OVC FIRST TEAM

Lester Hudson, UT Martin
Mike Rose, Eastern Kentucky
Drake Reed, Austin Peay
Leon Buchanan, Morehead State
Kenneth Faried, Morehead State

ALL-OVC SECOND TEAM
Wes Channels, Austin Peay
Gerald Robinson, Jr., Tennessee State
Romain Martin, Eastern Illinois
Danero Thomas, Murray State
Daniel Northern, Tennessee Tech

ALL-NEWCOMER TEAM
Isacc Miles, Murray State
Delrico Lane, UT Martin
Parker Smith, Tennessee State
T.J. Marion, Eastern Illinois
Kevin Murphy, Tennessee Tech
Ivan Aska, Murray State