GREENSBORO, N.C. – Senior Alyssa Thomas was voted to the All-Atlantic Coast Conference First Team for the third straight year and Lexie Brown was voted to the All-ACC Freshman Team by the Blue Ribbon Panel Tuesday.
The league will announce the Blue Ribbon Panel’s ACC Player of the Year, Freshman of the Year and Coach of the Year on Wednesday, March 5. Brown and Thomas helped lead Maryland (24-5, 12-4 ACC) to the No. 3 seed in this weekend’s ACC Tournament in Greensboro.
Thomas is the third player in Maryland history to earn All-ACC honors in each of her four years, following Crystal Langhorne and Marissa Coleman. She made the Second Team as the league’s Freshman of the Year in 2010 and has been on the First Team ever since as the conference’s Player of the Year as a sophomore and junior. For the full All-ACC team, log on to http://www.theacc.com/#!/news-detail/All-ACC-All-Freshman-Team-Announced_03-04-14_diyul3.
Brown is the 14th player in head coach Brenda Frese’s 12 seasons to make the All-ACC Freshman Team. She is joined by North Carolina’s Diamond DeShields and Allisha Gray, Georgia Tech’s Kaela Davis and Miami’s Adrienne Motley. DeShields,
“This is just really special to be included among the best players in the conference,” Thomas said. “We battle night in and night out and it’s just an honor. Thanks to my teammates and coaches for battling every night and helping me every day.”
“This is just an honor to be included on the All-Freshman Team because this is a really strong freshman class on our team and all across the conference,” Brown said. “My teammates and coaches have supported me and have helped me through this transition so much. Congrats to the other freshmen and a special congrats to my girls from Georgia [DeShields, Gray, Davis].”
This year, Thomas led the Terrapins in scoring with 18.7 point per game, in rebounding with 10.8 rebounds per game and averaged 4.3 assists per game along with Brown. She is just 14 points from breaking Langhorne’s program record of 2,247 points and 36 points from passing Juan Dixon’s school record of 2,269 points.
Thomas picked up an ACC-best 23 double-doubles this year and led the nation with four triple-doubles. She is one of just three players in NCAA history with six or more triple-doubles in her career.
“It never gets old seeing our players earn this type of honor and we're really appreciative,’ Frese said. “Alyssa had another incredible season and was just devastating in so many ways. She shows up every game and accepts the responsibility of helping us win. She plays with incredible passion and really is willing to give everything she has for her team. We're really happy for her to take her place among the league's very best and we offer our congratulations to the other players as well."
Brown started in 24 of 28 games played for the Terrapins, leading one of the nation’s top offenses. She averaged 9.8 points per game on the year and 10.6 points per game in conference play, as well as 4.3 assists. She finished second among all league players in assist/turnover ratio (2.1). She was named to the Nancy Lieberman Award Watch list for the honor that goes to the nation’s top point guard.
“Because we believed in her, we threw Lexie into the toughest position on the court as a freshman, against really tough competition,” Frese said. “This honor tells you she handled that challenge really well. Her game IQ is one of the best I've ever seen and it's been a pleasure to watch her grow this season."
"I honestly thought all three of our freshmen had an argument to get this honor, but I understand there are only so many slots and there were a lot of terrific players to choose from. We're happy to get one selected, but we feel that the future of our program is in good hands."
The Terrapins are ranked No. 8 in the latest Associated Press poll and No. 5 in the USA Today Coaches poll.
Next, Maryland will play Friday at 8:00 p.m. in the ACC Tournament Quarterfinals at the Greensboro Coliseum. The Terrapins earned a double-bye as the No. 3 seed. They will play either the 6-seed North Carolina, the 11-seed Wake Forest or the 14-seed Pittsburgh in the Quarterfinals. Wake Forest and Pittsburgh will play at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday in the First Round, with the winner advancing to play North Carolina Thursday at 8 p.m. in the Second Round.
The Terrapins’ matchup Friday night will be shown on Comcast SportsNet locally, as well as Fox Sports South and more channels across the nation. For other channels and more information on the ACC Tournament, log on to http://www.theacc.com/#!/page/championship_w-baskbl.