Pierson Named Big 12 Freshman of the Year
March 3, 2000
LUBBOCK, Texas - Texas Tech freshman Plenette Pierson was named the Big 12 Conference Women's Basketball Freshman of the Year, which was announced today by the conference office. Senior Keitha Dickerson was named second-team All-Big 12 and senior Melinda Schmucker-Pharies was an honorable mention selection.
Highlighting the first team was Oklahoma's Phylesha Whaley who was named Big 12 Conference Player of the Year after guiding the Sooners to a share of their first Big 12 Conference women's basketball championship. Iowa State and Texas Tech also tied for the league title after all three teams posted identical 13-3 records in Big 12 regular season action.
Whaley, a 5-10 senior forward, is currently third in the league in scoring with 20.6 points per game and fourth in rebounding with 8.3 rebounds per game. She is tied for third in the league with nine double-doubles. In conference-only games, Whaley led the Big 12 with 22.2 points per outing and was fourth with 8.4 rebounds per contest.
Oklahoma's Sherri Coale was honored as Big 12 Conference Coach of the Year. Coale has guided the Sooners to a current 23-6 overall record and the most conference wins in school history in only her fourth season as a collegiate head coach. OU's 13 conference wins matched its total of the previous three years combined.
Missouri junior Amanda Lassiter was named Big 12 Conference Newcomer of the Year and to the all-conference third team. The 6-1 junior transfer from Central Arizona Community College led the Tigers to a seventh place Big 12 finish and 17-9 overall record, Mizzou's first winning season since 1992-93. Lassiter is 17th in the Big 12 in scoring (13.3 ppg), first in blocked shots (2.37) and fifth in steals (2.89).
Pierson, the Big 12 Conference Freshman of the Year, is a 6-1 who post started all 27 games in her inaugural campaign for the Lady Raiders who are currently 24-3. Pierson is 13th in the Big 12 in scoring (13.8) and 14th in rebounding (6.9).
Joining Whaley on the All-Big 12 First Team are: Texas' Edwina Brown, Iowa State's Stacy Frese, Kansas' Lynn Pride and Nebraska's Nicole Kubik. Second Team honorees include: Tech's Dickerson, Oklahoma State's Jennifer Crow, Oklahoma's Stacey Dales and LaNeishea Caufield, and Iowa State's Angie Welle.
Third Team members are: Lassiter, Texas A&M's Jaynetta Saunders, Iowa State's Megan Taylor and Desiree Francis and Colorado's Jenny Roulier.
The Big 12 Conference Women's Basketball Tournament will be played next Tuesday-Saturday, March 7-11, at Municipal Auditorium in Kansas City, Mo. For ticket information, contact Ticket Master (816) 931-3330.
2000 All-Big 12 Conference Women's Basketball Team
Player of the Year: Phylesha Whaley, Oklahoma