Blue Demon seniors Katherine Harry and Anna Martin pose with DePaul's Director of Athletics Jean Lenti Ponsetto and head coach Doug Bruno at Tuesday's end of the year celebration.
April 16, 2013
CHICAGO - The DePaul women's basketball team celebrated its 2012-13 season at Erie Café in Chicago's River North neighborhood on Tuesday. For the second consecutive season Anna Martin was named the team's most valuable player while eight other awards were handed out in an evening in which the Blue Demons celebrated their 11th consecutive NCAA Tournament appearance and their 21-12 record.
DePaul seniors - Katherine Harry and Martin shared the Maggie Dixon Captain's Award. The award is named after the former DePaul assistant coach who passed away tragically in April 2006. The award honors Dixon's commitment to the game and passion for excelling both on and off the court.
The individual statistical awards were given out to the top free throw shooter along with the team's top rebounder and assist distributors. The team's top defensive stopper was also honored.
Freshman Chanise Jenkins earned the free throw award after boasting a team best, .793 percentage from the charity stripe. The freshman sunk several key free throws in the waning seconds of three games which helped to seal DePaul's wins at Cincinnati and against Pittsburgh and Rutgers. The Chicago native made 17 of her final 19 free throws including six straight to end the season.
Harry earned her fourth consecutive rebounding award after leading DePaul and the BIG EAST Conference in rebounding for the second consecutive season.
Harry averaged 10.7 rebounds per game which was 1.2 more rebounds than any other player in the BIG EAST. The Columbia, Mo., native left her mark in the BIG EAST record book after grabbing 565 rebounds in league games which is the ninth most ever. Harry finished her career ranked third all-time in rebounding with 1,158 boards while her 8.5 career rebounding average ties for eighth all-time in DePaul's annuals. In 2012-13, Harry's 10.7 rebounding average ranked 24th in Division I, while her 22 rebounds at Loyola on Dec. 18 is the sixth best rebounding effort in school history.
A staple of DePaul's offense is the team's ability to share the ball and find the open player and the 2012-13 season was no exception. The Blue Demons averaged an assist on 63.3 percent of its baskets, while Brittany Hrynko, Martin and Jenkins combined for 377 of DePaul's 557 assists (65.3 percent). Hrynko led the Blue Demons with 160 assists which ranks sixth in DePaul's single-season record book. The sophomore's 4.8 assists per game ranked third in the BIG EAST and 51st in Division I. Jenkins dished out 4.1 assists per game which was the 102nd best average in DI and ranks seventh in the BIG EAST. Martin averaged 3.4 assists in her 24 games, while her 357 career assists ranks sixth all-time at DePaul.
Hrynko, who was named the BIG EAST's Co-Most Improved Player, was honored with DePaul's defensive award. Hrynko, who was routinely was assigned to guard the opposing team's best player, led the Blue Demons with 67 steals which is the most since All-American Khara Smith tallied 73 in the 2005-06 season. Hrynko's 2.03 steals per game ranked 202nd in Division I and was 12th in the BIG EAST. In league games, the Philadelphia native averaged 2.7 steals per game and was responsible for five steals in DePaul's win over Rutgers.
Kelsey Reynolds earned the Pat Ewers Unsung Hero Award after developing a "whatever needs to be done attitude." Reynolds came off the bench and provided DePaul a spark -- whether it came in the form of a defensive stop through a steal or scrapping on the floor for a loose ball or draining a much needed three which would spark a Blue Demon offensive run. Reynolds also inspired DePaul's depleted line-up and played through the pain of a broken foot before being sidelined for nine games. The junior started four games and played double-digit minutes in all but three games this season.
Coach Bruno handed out the Cookie Gavin Courage Award to Martin. The senior, who has become DePaul's vocal leader on and off the court battled through the adversity of injuries to both of her knees during the season.
After not missing a game in her previous three seasons, Martin missed the first game of her career in the Virgin Islands and against South Carolina. Working with DePaul's trainer Dave McAuliffe, Martin did not miss another game, until suffering a bone bruise to her other knee six minutes into the Providence game. After being mentored and groomed by DePaul legends - Sam Quigley, Deirdre Naughton, Felicia Chester and the Blue Demon coaching staff, Martin knew she needed to still be a presence on the bench and in practice and became a "student coach." While Martin's presence on the court was missed, she guided the players from the bench and met with the starters before the opening tip and remained a vocal constant from the sideline. Despite only playing eight league games, Martin was named a second-team all BIG EAST performer and was also awarded the league's Sportsmanship and was named the Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
Earning the team's MVP honors for the second consecutive season, Martin led the Blue Demons with 15.6 points per game and finished her career ranked sixth all-time in scoring with 1,756 points. Along with being a scoring legend at DePaul, the Kentucky native ranks in the top 10 in the career categories of 3-point field goals (181 -- 5th), 3-point field goal attempts (529 -- 5th), assists (357 -- 6th), games played (127 -- 7th), field goal attempts (1,474 -- 8th) and field goals (656 -- 9th).
The Shirley Becker Academic Award, named for the former Director of Athletics Academic Advising, was handed out to Brooke Schulte, Centrese McGee, Kelsey Smith, Megan Podkowa, Megan Rogowski, Gena Lenti, Jenkins, Harry and Reynolds, who all have cumulative GPAs in the fall and winter quarters above 3.5. Becker was DePaul's first academic advisor before she lost her battle to colon cancer in 1995.
The 2012-13 team set new single season record for - 3-point field goal attempts (761) and averaged 23.1 attempts from behind the arc in 2012-13. Along with setting a new school record, the 2012-13 edition of the Blue Demons ranked in the top 10 in games played (33), field goal attempts (2,145), 3-pointers (228), assists (557), blocks (125) and block shot average (3.8). Individually, Harry graduates as the only player in DePaul's history to have more than 1,000 points, 1,000 rebounds and 175 blocks. She also appeared in the most games in DePaul's history with 136 games played.