Women’s Basketball Sweeps NJAC’s Major Awards; Three Named to All-Conference Team Tobie, Brown, Henry, Harvey All Selected in Vote of League Head Coaches

2/20/2013 9:30:00 AM

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NJAC Women’s Basketball All-Conference Team

Montclair, NJ – The Montclair State women’s basketball team went through the New Jersey Athletic Conference unbeaten this season and the awards reflected that as MSU swept all four of the league’s major accolades with the announcement of the All-Conference Team on Wednesday.

Sophomore Melissa Tobie (Elizabeth, NJ, Roselle Catholic) was named the NJAC Player of the Year while freshman Shalette Brown (Somerset, NJ, Franklin Township) was chosen as the Rookie of the Year. Junior guard Nicosia Henry (Bolingbrook, IL, Bolingbrook) was tabbed as the conference’s Defensive Player of the Year and Karin Harvey was picked as the Coach of the Year by her peers.

It is the first time that a team has captured all of the major awards since the 2006-07 season. Tobie was also named to the First Team along with senior forward Taylor Jeffers (Franklin Township, NJ, Franklin). Henry was named to the Second Team in a vote by the league’s coaches.

The four players were instrumental in Montclair State’s finest conference season in program history. MSU
went undefeated at 16-0 in addition to going 25-0 overall become the second team in program history to accomplish that feat and the ninth team in Montclair State Athletic history.  Montclair also set records for the best start in program history and tied the record for wins in a season.

Tobie, last year’s Rookie of the Year, becomes the first Montclair State player to earn the NJAC’s top award since Stephanie Machin in 2006 and the fourth overall. She also the first Red Hawk to be named to the First Team in each of her first two seasons since Ebony Allen in 2003 and 2004.

Tobie is ranked in the Top 10 in six different categories, including the league leader in field goal percentage at 51.6 percent. The 6-1 Tobie averaged 14.9 points per game, third-best in the NJAC, and currently ranks third in free-throw percentage (.784) and blocks (1.3 per game). She is eighth in assists (2.9 per game) and 14th in rebounds at 6.1 caroms per contest. Named the NJAC Player of the Week, Tobie had four double-double performances and reached double digits in points in 21 of 25 games. She was named the Most Valuable Player of the Gwynedd-Mercy Tip-Off Tournament in November and was chosen to the All-Tournament Team in the MSU Holiday Tournament.

Brown’s selection marks the second straight year that MSU has captured the conference’s honor for best newcomer and third time that Montclair has won it in successive years (Allen and Machin in 2003, 2004 and Aidill Borrero and Wykemia Kelley in 1995 and 1996).

An nine-time NJAC Rookie of the Week selection, Brown averaged 10.3 points per game and 6.8 rebounds in her first season at MSU. Ranked 13th in the NJAC in scoring and 10th in rebounding, she is second in the conference at 3.9 steals per game and is third in field goal percentage at 46.2 percent. Brown registered five double-doubles this season, including three of her last four entering the NJAC Tournament.

Henry is the second Montclair State player to be named Defensive Player of the Year since the league began handing out the award in the 1999-2000 campaign. She joins Kisandra Ayanbeku who was named following the 2008-09 season.

Henry keyed the Red Hawk defensive unit this season which currently ranks No. 1 in the NJAC and seventh in Division III at 44.9 points per game. Henry ranks third in the league in steals with 97 and had 13 games with five or more steals including a school single-game record 12 versus Rutgers-Newark on January 19. The 5-10 junior also contributed offensively for Montclair averaging 9.6 points (18th in the NJAC) and 6.8 rebounds (10th) while shooting 47.5 percent from the field, second-highest in the conference behind Tobie.

Jeffers earns her first All-Conference accolade following her finest season in a Red Hawk uniform. She averaged 10.9 points per game and 6.5 rebounds which both rank in the Top 15 in the NJAC. In addition Jeffers shot 68.5 percent from the foul line and averaged 1.6 steals per game. Three times Jeffers recorded a double-double, including a career-best 25 points along with 10 rebounds in a win at Richard Stockton on January 3.

Harvey was selected as the Coach of the Year for the second time in her six seasons with the Red Hawks having won it during the 2008-09 campaign when her team went 11-2, won the North Division and was the top overall seed in the NJAC Tournament. Harvey joins Jill Jeffrey (1989, 1990) as the only coaches in MSU history to win multiple NJAC Coach of the Year honors. Not only did Harvey lead the Red Hawks to their unbeaten mark and Top 5 national ranking, she also picked up two major milestones this season with her 100th career victory in the season opener as well as her 100th win at MSU on January 3 at Richard Stockton. Harvey has compiled a career record of 124-64 in seven seasons overall, 111-50 at Montclair State where she is fourth all-time in victories.

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