Husson senior Raheem Anderson (Miramar, Fla.) has been selected as the North Atlantic Conference (NAC) Men's Basketball Player of the Year, while New England College freshman Calvin Cheek (Mattapan, Mass.) was tabbed as both the Defensive Player of the Year and the Rookie of the Year. Castleton senior Pavin Parrish (Rochester, Vt.) was voted the Senior Scholar Athlete of the Year, New England College head coach Charlie Mason was chosen as the Coach of the Year and ten men's basketball student-athletes were named to the Sportsmanship Team to headline the 2018 All-Conference announcement.
NAC All-Conference selections are determined by a vote of the conference coaches.
Anderson has had an extraordinary final season so far as the Eagles finished the regular season with a 15-3 conference record (19-6 overall) and claimed the No. 2 seed in the NAC Tournament. The preseason All-American ended the regular season ranked in the top three in four statistical categories including being the league leader in points (349), points per game (19.4), and free-throw percentage (90.0%). The senior also tied for first in field goals made (124) and was third in free throws made (72). He also tallied 102 rebounds (5.7/game), 54 assists (3.0/game), 30 steals (1.7/game), and four blocks in NAC competition. Impressively, Anderson recorded double-digit scoring in all 18 conference games, while netting 15 or more points in 15 of those games and 20 or more points in eight NAC games. Overall, he eclipsed the 2,000-point mark this season, netting 2,414 points for his career and will look to increase that number as the Eagles enter the NAC Semifinals. Nationally, he ranks in the top 40 in five statistical categories including 13th in free-throw percentage (89.4%), 22nd in total field goal attempts (420), 35th total field goals made (192), 36th in total points (533) and 38th in points per game (21.3). This is his second NAC Player of the Year selection for Anderson after earning the honor last season.
Cheek has had a tremendous impact on his team, the conference and the nation this season. The rookie finished conference play as the top player in steals with 105 (5.8/game) and assists with 84 (4.7/game), while also tallying 10.5 points per game and 4.9 rebounds per game. The guard saw action in all 18 conference games, all of which he recorded at least one rebound, one assist, one steal, and two points. He tallied five or more steals in 14 conference games, posted one double double (11 steals and 19 points) and claimed one triple double (14 points, 11 rebounds, and 11 steals) against NAC opponents. Overall, Cheek leads his team with 5.3 steals and 4.5 assists per game and is third on his squad with 10.1 points and 4.6 rebounds per game. Impressively, he leads all three NCAA Divisions in steals (132) and steals per game (5.28) and is tied for fifth in Division III after recording his triple double on February 17. Cheek is a six-time NAC Rookie of the Week selection.
Parrish is being recognized for excelling academically and athletically throughout his undergraduate experience. He is a Business Administration major with a double concentration in Management and Marketing, while also minoring in Sports/Fitness. The senior is a leading example of what it means to be a Division III student-athlete by making the most out of his undergraduate experience. Parrish has been named to the President's List three times as well as being named to the Dean's List four times. He is a part of Sigma Beta Delta and the International Honor Society in Business, Management, and Administration. On the court, the 2015 NAC Rookie of the Year played 96 games in a Spartan uniform making 86 starts over his career. He averaged 28.4 minutes per game, while totaling 871 points, 306 rebounds, 281 assists, 125 steals and 12 blocks throughout his four seasons.
Mason, in his 16th season at New England College, is being recognized by his peers as NAC Coach of the Year for the second time (2015). He led the Pilgrims to their best season record to date after compiling a 19-6 overall record in the regular season, including a 15-3 record against NAC opponents. Top seeded NEC will host the NAC Semifinals and Finals this weekend, which will mark the first time in which NEC advanced into the NAC Semifinals, as his squad has only made four NAC Quarterfinal appearances. New England College ended conference play ranked in the top-two in four categories, including leading the league in free throws made (305) and steals per game (15), while taking second in field goals made (542), points per game (84.8), and offensive rebounds per game (15.3). Overall, Mason's squad enters the NAC Tournament ranked in the top 45 in 10 Division III statistical categories including a top-six ranking in steals per game (third, 14.8), total steals (third, 370), turnover margin (fifth, 8.2) and turnovers forced (sixth, 24.08).
Joining Anderson and Cheek on the All-NAC First Team were Colby-Sawyer sophomore center Dana Bean (Franklin, N.H.), and New England College junior guard Ricky Leonard (Windsor, Conn.) and sophomore Izaiah Winston-Brooks (Roxbury, Mass.).
Second team selections include Colby-Sawyer sophomore forward Patrick Coffey (Westford, Mass.), UMaine-Farmington sophomore forward Riley Robinson (Dixfield, Maine), Husson freshman guard DJ Bussey (Peoria, Ariz.) and junior forward Justin Martin (Winslow, Maine) and Thomas senior center Carlos Gonzalez (Kennebunk, Maine).
The NAC Men's Basketball Sportsmanship Team is reserved for those who have distinguished themselves through demonstrated acts of sportsmanship and ethical behavior. The honorees are individuals who have positively affected the basketball culture and environment and whose behavior clearly demonstrates sportsmanship and integrity that go beyond the playing rules and etiquette. The following ten individuals have been selected to the 2018 Sportsmanship Team, Castleton's Parrish, Colby-Sawyer senior Evyn Nolette (Sanford, Maine), UMaine-Farmington senior Michel Atkins (El Paso, Texas), Green Mountain freshman Duane Goodman Jr. (Charlotte, N.C.), Husson sophomore Bruce St. Peter (Ellsworth, Maine), Johnson junior Vernon Slater (Washington, D.C.), Lyndon senior Darren Williams Jr. (Wiesbaden, Germany), Maine Maritime sophomore Andrew Liebert (Plano, Texas), New England College junior Jason Jones (Roxbury, Mass.), and Thomas senior John Morgan (Sanford, Maine).
2018 Men's Basketball All-Conference Teams
To view a PDF list of the All-Conference team click HERE.
G - Raheem Anderson, Senior, Husson
C - Dana Bean, Sophomore, Colby-Sawyer
G - Calvin Cheek, Freshman, New England College
G - Ricky Leonard, Junior, New England College
G - Izaiah Winston-Brooks, Sophomore, New England College
G - DJ Bussey, Freshman, Husson
F - Patrick Coffey, Sophomore, Colby-Sawyer
C - Carlos Gonzalez, Senior, Thomas
F - Justin Martin, Junior, Husson
F - Riley Robinson, Sophomore, UMaine-Farmington
Player of the Year of the Year
Raheem Anderson, Senior, Husson
Defensive Player of the Year & Rookie of the Year
Calvin Cheek, Freshman, New England College
Senior Scholar Athlete of the Year
Pavin Parrish, Senior, Castleton
Coach of the Year
Charlie Mason, 16th Season, New England College
Michael Atkins, Senior, UMaine-Farmington
Duane Goodman Jr., Freshman, Green Mountain
Jason Jones, Junior, New England College
Andrew Liebert, Sophomore, Maine Maritime
John Morgan, Senior, Thomas
Evyn Nolette, Senior, Colby-Sawyer
Pavin Parrish, Senior, Castleton
Bruce St. Peter, Sophomore, Husson
Vernon Slater, Junior, Johnson
Darren Williams Jr., Senior, Lyndon