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Between the men and women’s basketball teams, a total of 10 Cougars earn WCC honors

The women’s team brought home Coach of the Year and Co-Player of the Year awards; Matt Haarms named WCC Defensive Player of the Year.

(Isaac Hale | Special to The Tribune) Brigham Young University forward Matt Haarms (3) blocks a shot from St. Mary's College guard Logan Johnson (0) during a game between the BYU Cougars and the Saint Mary’s College of California Gaels held at the Marriott Center in Provo on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021.

A total of nine BYU men’s and women’s basketball players, along with a coach, have garnered West Coast Conference honors, as announced on Tuesday.

On the men’s side, Alex Barcello was named to the First Team, while Brandon Averette and Matt Haarms were named to the Second Team and Caleb Lohner was named to the Freshman Team. Haarms was also named the WCC Defensive Player of the Year.

Barcello has led the Cougars in scoring this season, averaging 15.7 points per game, and is shooting 48.9% from the three-point range this season — the ninth-best percentage in the nation.

Averette has averaged 11.4 points, 3.7 assists and 2.8 rebounds this season, and put up the highest single-game scoring total for the Cougars when he put up 30 points against Texas Southern. The grad transfer has also scored in double figures in seven consecutive games and nine of his last 10.

Haarms has averaged 11 points and 4.7 rebounds, along with two blocks per game this season. He’s put up a season-high five blocks per game in two of his last three games.

Lohner earned a spot in the starting rotation as a freshman and has led the Cougars in rebounding all season, at 6.8 boards per game. As the regular season was coming to an end, Lohner’s offensive productivity skyrocketed, but is averaging 7.6 points per game.

On the woman’s side, the biggest honors went to sophomore guard Shaylee Gonzales, who was named 2020-21 WCC Co-Player of the Year, and coach Jeff Judkins, who was named WCC Coach of the Year.

Gonzales shares the honor with Gonzaga senior Jenn Wirth and Judkins is WCC Coach of the Year for the second time in his career.

Gonzales was also one of three Cougars named to the 2020-21 All-WCC First Team, which included senior guard Johnson Harding and sophomore forward Lauren Gustin. Grad transfer Tegan Graham and senior center Sara Hamson were named All-WCC honorable mention.

Gonzales averaged 18.5 points on 47.1% shooting, 5.2 rebounds, 3.7 assists and 2.4 steals a game and is the sixth BYU player to earn WCC Player of the Year honors.

Harding earned First Team honors for the second time in her career after posting a 13.7 point average this season. She also averaged 3.4 assists and 2.2 rebounds.

Redshirt sophomore Gustin averaged a double-double this season with 12.9 rebounds and 11.8 points. The transfer is the nation’s third-leading rebounder and led the WCC with 13 double-doubles in 20 games.

Hamson, a two-time WCC Defensive Player of the Year, averaged a league-leading 2.62 blocks per game, along with 5.4 points and 4.0 rebounds. Hamson’s 379 career blocks is the most among active players in the NCAA.

Graham added an average of 7.9 points, 2.9 rebounds and 2.1 assists off the bench this season, while shooting 48.8% from the floor and 44% from the three.

Both the men’s and women’s teams earned a No. 2 seed in the WCC Tournament and will play in the semifinal on Monday, with a chance to make it to the championship game the next day.

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