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WVWC’s Hibbitt earns MEC basketball accolades

BRIDGEPORT, W.Va. — West Liberty’s Bryce Butler has been selected as the Mountain East Conference Men’s Basketball Player of the Year, while Alderson Broaddus’ Jalen Knott (Freshman of the Year) and WLU’s Ben Howlett (Coach of the Year) also received top honors from the league. 

Butler, a sophomore from Latrobe, Pa., is the MEC Player of the Year after helping lead West Liberty to the MEC regular season title by averaging 18.6 points on 64.0 percent shooting from the field to go with 7.3 rebounds per game. Butler ranks in the top 15 in the conference in seven different categories: scoring, rebounding, field goal percentage, assists, steals, blocks and assist/turnover ratio. He’s posted eight double-doubles this year and has scored 20 points or more in 11 games. He had a season-high 30 points in a win over Fairmont State. Butler was named MEC Player of the Week twice this season.

Knott, a native of Cleveland Heights, Ohio, is the Freshman of the Year after 9.7 points and shooting 43 percent from the floor in his first season with the Battlers. Knott has worked his way into the starting rotation and has reached double figures in scoring in 13 games this season, including each of his last five games. He had a season-high 25 points last week against Wheeling.

Howlett earns MEC Coach of the Year honors for the second time in his career after earning the recognition in 2018. Howlett has coached the Hilltoppers to a 26-2 overall record and has WLU ranked No. 2 in the country. The Hilltoppers collected a fourth Mountain East Conference regular season title under Howlett’s leadership this season after posting a 20-2 record in league play. Howlett has West Liberty poised for a 13th-straight bid to the NCAA Tournament as the Hilltoppers are No. 1 in the most recent edition of the NCAA Atlantic Region rankings which are used to determine the NCAA Tournament Field. West Liberty is the defending regional champion. 

The league also announced the 2021-22 all-conference teams. Five players are repeat selections from last year in Glen Abram (W.Va. State), Anthony Pittman (W.Va. State), Pat Robinson (West Liberty), Isaiah Sanders (Fairmont State) and John Williams (Glenville State). That group is joined by Butler, Keith Williams (Charleston) and Jaedon Willis (Notre Dame) on the first team.

Wheeling’s duo of Jarett Haines and Jordan Reid earned second-team recognition, along with Fairmont State’s Zyon Dobbs and Cole VonHandorf. They were joined on the second team by Lamont McManus (Charleston), Jeremiah Moore (W.Va. State), Sam Rolle (Davis & Elkins), KJ Walker (Alderson Broaddus) and Matt Weir (Concord).

Eddie Colbert (Charleston), Agyei Edwards (Frostburg State), Jayden Hibbitt (W.Va. Wesleyan), Marlon Moore (West Liberty) and Adrian Scarborough (Glenville State) earned honorable mention accolades. 

Hibbett, a 6’6 forward from Woodbridge, Va., led the Bobcats in scoring, rebounding, field goals made, field goal percentage, and free throws made. Hibbitt played in 22 games before his season was cut short. However, he still managed to finish eighth in points per game in the conference.
 
The redshirt freshman scored 20 or more points nine times and 15 or more in 18 of his 22 contests. He had a career-high 29 points twice against West Liberty (Dec. 1) and Salem (Jan. 1). He tallied another career-high 16 rebounds against Wheeling (Jan. 26).

All 12 institutions are represented on the All-MEC teams. The All-MEC teams are selected by a vote of the league’s coaches.

2022 All-MEC First Team
NameSchoolCl.Pos.Ht.Hometown
Glen Abram**W.Va. StateGr.G6-1Chicago, Ill.
Bryce ButlerWest LibertySo.G6-5Latrobe, Pa.
Anthony Pittman*W.Va. StateJr.F6-5Charleston, W.Va.
Pat Robinson*West LibertySr.G6-3Chesterfield, N.J.
Isaiah Sanders*Fairmont StateSr.G/F6-5Sicklerville, N.J.
John Williams*Glenville StateSr.G6-5Augusta, Ga.
Keith WilliamsCharlestonSr.G6-2Sandusky, Ohio
Jaedon WillisNotre DameJr.G6-0Baltimore, Md.
* First team in 2021          **  First team in 2020 and 2021
2022 All-MEC Second Team
NameSchoolCl.Pos.Ht.Hometown
Zyon DobbsFairmont StateJr.G6-4Fairmont W.Va.
Jarett HainesWheelingSr.G5-11Bronx, N.Y.
Lamont McManusCharlestonSr.C6-6Waldorf, Md.
Jeremiah MooreW.Va. StateGr.F6-6West Orange, N.Y.
Jordan ReidWheelingGr.G6-1Silver Spring, Md.
Sam RolleDavis & ElkinsSo.G5-11Riviera Beach, Fla.
Cole VonHandorfFairmont StateGr.G6-2Covington, Ky.
KJ WalkerAlderson BroaddusSr.G5-10Reynoldsburg, Ohio
Matt WeirConcordSr.G6-0Nashport, Ohio
2022 All-MEC Honorable Mention
NameSchoolCl.Pos.Ht.Hometown
Eddie ColbertCharlestonJr.G/F6-6Toledo, Ohio
Agyei EdwardsFrostburg StateJr.G5-11Washington, D.C.
Jayden HibbittW.Va. WesleyanSo.G/F6-6Woodbridge, Va.
Marlon MooreWest LibertySr.F6-5Cleveland, Ohio
Adrian ScarboroughGlenville StateSr.F6-3Raleigh, N.C.
Player of the Year: Bryce Butler (West Liberty)
Freshman of the Year: Jalen Knott (Alderson Broaddus)
Coach of the Year: Ben Howlett (West Liberty)

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