East Division Player of the Week
Kourtney Brown, Buffalo, Sr., F, Solon, OH/Solon
Brown averaged 33.0 points, 12.5 rebounds and 5.0 blocks over UB's two games this past week. Brown had a career-high 35 points against Miami, while adding seven blocks against the RedHawks, tying for her career best. In the win over the Bobcats, Brown had 31 points, her third 30-point effort of the season, while completing the double-double with a game-high 16 rebounds. The double-double was the 39th of her career and 10th of the season. Brown shot over 72 percent from the field over the two games, converting on 26 of her 36 shots. She also went 14-of-17 from the free throw line over the week. Brown is now averaging 22.2 points per game and 11.9 rebounds per contest.
West Division Player of the Week
Ty'Ronda Benning, Ball State, Sr., G, Muncie, Ind./Southside
Averaged 27.5 points per game as Ball State knocked of Western Michigan (67-60) during midweek play and defeated MAC West Divisional co-leader Central Michigan 86-77 ... shot 44 percent from the field for the week including 53 percent from behind the arc ... had a career high 33 points in the Cardinals win over WMU she connected on 10-of-17 field goals, including 6-of-10 from behind the arc ... scored 22 points and brought down 10 rebounds as BSU beat CMU ... averaged 6.0 assists per game and 8.5 rebounds.
Additional Nominees for Player of the Week
Rachel Tecca, Akron, So., F, Tallmadge, Ohio (Hoban HS)
Akron sophomore Rachel Tecca recorded two consecutive double-doubles last week against Bowling Green and Miami, totaling seven for the season and ten for her career. Despite two losses, Tecca continues to lead the Zips in scoring and rebounding. The Tallmadge, Ohio native notched 16 points and 10 boards on the road at BGSU and 15 points and 14 rebounds at home against Miami. She has scored in double figures in all but two games this season and is averaging 17.1 ppg and 8.6 rpg.
Lauren Prochaska, Bowling Green, Sr., G/F, Plain City, Ohio (Jonathan Alder)
Averaged 20.5 points, 3.0 rebounds, 1.5 assists and 2.5 steals as the Falcons split a pair of games last week ... BGSU defeated Akron, 90-72, at home before suffering a 44-43 loss at Kent State to snap a 15-game winning streak ... shot 50.0% from the field, including a 7-of-15 (46.7%) effort from three-point land ... had 28 points in the win over Akron, scoring her 2,000th career point in the process.
Brandie Baker, Central Michigan, So., G, Flint, Mich. (Hamady HS)
Brandie Baker averaged 18.5 points, 9.0 boards and 5.5 assists in a pair of games last week for the Chippewas while shooting 58 percent from the floor (15-for-26), including 63 percent from the arc (5-for-8). The sophomore point guard scored 17 points in a 6-for-9 effort against Eastern Michigan, snaring eight boards and handing out three assists. She hit 4-of-5 three-pointers against the Eagles. She followed up the effort with 20 points, 10 boards and eight dimes against the Cardinals, going 9-for-17 from the floor, 1-for-3 from the arc.
Tavelyn James, Eastern Michigan, Jr., G, Detroit, Mich.-Mumford
Despite an 0-2 week versus Mid-American Conference West Division co-leaders, Tavelyn James paced the Eagles with 15.5 points, 6.0 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game. In 36 minutes per game, the Detroit native also notched 1.5 steals . Versus Toledo, James equaled a career-high with eight rebounds to go along with 13 points. Against CMU, James posted 18 points to go along with four caroms and going 9-of-10 from the free throw line.
Taisja Jones, Kent State, Sr., F, Dallas, Texas (Grayson Co. CC)
In Kent State's win over Bowling Green Jan. 15, Jones tallied 11 points and led Kent State in steals as the Golden Flashes ended a 13-game losing streak to the Falcons and take the early lead in the MAC-East standings. On Wednesday at Ohio, Jones was shy of a double-double with a game-high 17 points with eight rebounds and tied a career best with six steals. For the week, Jones led Kent State with 14.0 ppg, 6.5 rpg, 4.0 spg and shot 52.4 percent from the field.
Kirsten Olowinski, Miami, SO., F, Erie, Pa. (Mercyhurst Prep)
Kirsten continued her dominant play with two more double-doubles as the RedHawks were undefeated on the week. She averaged 24.5 points and 11.0 rebounds per game and even contributed five assists. She now has seven double-doubles on the season. It started with 22 points 10 rebounds and three assists in a 94-89 win over Buffalo. The RedHawks needed her to contribute in a big way to get past Akron on Saturday and she delivered with a career-high 27 points and 12 rebounds. She shot 11-for-14 in that contest and hit .690 (20-for-29) for the week. Kirsten also had three blocks and three steals in those two games.
Courtney Shelton, Northern Illinois, Jr., G, Rockford, Ill. (Hononegah)
Set a new career high with 29 points against Western Michigan... scored 11 points in the last 1:07, bringing the Huskies from eight points down to within two before NIU eventually fell... went 9-of-17 from the field, and 6-of-8 on three-pointers against the Broncos... was part of a defensive effort that held Toledo to a season-low 42 points, while scoring six herself against the Rockets.
Tenishia Benson, Ohio, Jr., G, Akron, Ohio (Cincinnati)
Benson enjoyed a good all-around week while filling up the stat sheet and matching a career high. She finished the week averaging 13.5 points, 9.5 rebs., 4.5 assists and 2.5 steals while shooting 90 percent from the free throw line. In the ‘Cats' game with Kent State, Benson notched her fourth double-double in six games, matching her career-best 11 rebounds while scoring 10 points and tallying five assists and two steals. She also finished a perfect 6-for-6 from the charity stripe. Against Buffalo, Benson finished with a team-best 17 points, eight rebs., four assists and two steals.
Jessica Williams, Toledo, Sr., G, Westerville, OH (North)
Senior Jessica Williams averaged a team-high 11.5 points, 4.0 rebounds and 1.5 assistst in a squad-best 32.0 minutes in a pair of Toledo victories last week. Williams opened the week with six points, one rebound, one assist and one steal in 29 minutes vs. Northern Illinois on Wednesday, before tallying a game-high 17 points with a season-high seven caroms in 35 minutes at Eastern Michigan on Saturday. Williams has scored in double figures nine times this season and made at least two triples in a game a team-high eight times so far in 2010-11. She currently sits third in UT in career three-point field goals (191), fifth in three-point field-goals attempted (507) and tied for fifth in three-point field-goal percentage (37.7%).
Taylor Manley, Western Michigan, Sr., G, Belleville, Mich./Belleville
Taylor Manley averaged 18..5 points per game and dished out 3.5 assists per game this week, leading Western Michigan to its first MAC victory of the season. Manley scored a team-high 19 points at Ball State Tuesday and then led WMU again Saturday with 18 points at Northern Illinois. The result was a Bronco victory in DeKalb, Western Michigan's first in five years. The last win for WMU at the Convocation Center was Feb. 26, 2006, before any of the current Broncos were members of the team. Manley shot 47.8 percent (11-for-23) for the week and knocked down 4 of 10 three pointers.