Courtesy: MAAC Sports

MAAC Announces 2016-17 Women’s Basketball All-Rookie Team

Courtesy:  MAAC Sports
Release:  February 27, 2017

EDISON, NJ – The Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference (MAAC) has announced the 2016-17 Women’s Basketball All-Rookie Team as voted upon by the league’s 11 head coaches.

The All-Rookie Team consists of Marist College guard Hannah Hand, Marist guard Rebekah Hand, Monmouth University guard Kayla Shaw, Rider University guard Stella Johnson, and Saint Peter’s University forward Zoe Pero.

One of these five freshmen will be honored as the 2016-17 MAAC Rookie of the Year at the Postseason Awards Show, which is going to be held at the brand-new Albany Capital Center on Friday, March 3 at 10:30 a.m. The Postseason Awards Show airs live on ESPN3.

Marist’s Hannah Hand averaged 10.2 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 2.9 assists per game this season. The Argyle, TX native shot 42.5 percent from the field and 39.4 percent from behind the arc, which was the second-best three-point field goal percentage in the MAAC behind Monmouth’s Kayla Shaw.

Hand’s 10.2 points per game ranked third-best amongst freshmen in the conference, she trailed Rebekah Hand (13.4 ppg) and Shaw (11.6 ppg). She was also tied for seventh in the league and third amongst freshmen in assists per game (2.9). The guard played in 27 games and made 24 starts, she was named MAAC Rookie of the Week twice (January 16 & January 30). Hand was a unanimous selection to the All-Rookie Team.

Rebekah Hand averaged 13.4 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 3.1 assists per game in 30 starts for Marist. The guard led MAAC freshmen in scoring, rebounding, free-throw percentage (80.4%), defensive rebounds per game (4.6), and minutes per game (35.9).

She ranked 10th in the league in scoring (13.3 ppg), eighth in rebounding (6.8 rpg), sixth in assists (3.1 apg), third in free-throw percentage (80.4%), sixth in assist/turnover ratio (1.0), tied for ninth in defensive rebounds per game (4.6), and fourth in minutes played (35.9). The Argyle, TX native was named MAAC Rookie of the Week eight times this season and earned the honor five weeks in a row (November 21-December 19). Hand was a unanimous selection to the All-Rookie Team.

Monmouth’s Kayla Shaw averaged 11.6 points per game on 40.3 percent shooting from the field and 41.3% shooting from three, to lead the MAAC. The guard led the league in three-pointers made (88), three-pointers attempted (213), and three-pointers made per game (3.0).

Shaw ranked 20th in the nation in three-pointers made this season coming into play on Sunday, February 26. She converted seven three-pointers on January 28 vs. Siena College, to tie Iona College guard Alexis Lewis and Siena guard Jackie Benitez for the most threes made in a game in the MAAC this season. The Scottsdale, AZ native was named MAAC Rookie of the Week three times (January 9, January 23 & February 27). Shaw was a unanimous selection to the All-Rookie Team.

Stella Johnson averaged 10.0 points, 4.8 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 2.8 steals per game for Rider. She shot 51.1 percent from the field, which led all freshmen and was second overall in the MAAC. She also led freshmen and ranked third in the league in steals per game (2.8). Prior to games being played on Sunday, February 26, Johnson ranked 24th in the nation in steals per game.

The Denville, NJ native recorded six steals in her collegiate debut against Princeton University on November 11 and then set a Rider program record with eight steals against Lafayette College on November 14. She was named MAAC Rookie of the Week twice (November 14 & December 26). Johnson also earned the USBWA Freshman of the Week honor once (December 27). Johnson was a unanimous selection to the All-Rookie Team.

Saint Peter’s Zoe Pero averaged 7.1 points and 4.4 rebounds per game in 29 games played in her freshman campaign. Pero led the MAAC in free-throw percentage (82.2%). The forward scored in double figures seven times this season and recorded a season-high 18 points on three occasions (December 30 at Brown, February 16 at Canisius & February 24 vs. Siena).

The Secaucus, NJ native broke into the Peacocks’ starting lineup down the stretch starting 14-straight games to close out the regular season. She was named MAAC Rookie of the Week once (January 2).

The 2017 MAAC Women’s Basketball Championship game takes place on Monday, March 6 at 5:00 p.m. and will air live on ESPNU with the winner earning the league’s automatic bid to the NCAA Championship.

For all information on the 2017 MAAC Basketball Championships, visit maacsports.com/basketball. Be sure to follow the conversation on all social media platforms by using #MAACHoops.  

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