Red Hawks receive 5 Region X women's hoops honors

Red Hawks receive 5 Region X women's hoops honors

KINSTON, N.C. — After a record-setting season, the Catawba Valley Community College women's basketball program has received five Region X accolades.

Sophomores Shaniya Lester and Tory Agrusa are two of 13 players named All-Region X, while freshmen Alizeya Mitchell and Monique McAbee were named to the Region X All-Academic team.

Red Hawks head coach Tisha England was also tabbed the Region X Coach of the Year by the league's women's basketball coaches — the first time she's received this honor.

"It's a very humbling experience," England said of her honor. "It means a lot that my peers and colleagues would vote for me. They've seen the work that I've put in. I love the fact that we, as Region X, are producing great coaches, as well as student-athletes. To be amongst the best of these coaches is an honor. I give God all the glory and honor. He is first and foremost in my life. Without Him, I'm not who I am."

Sophomore forward Tanisha Wall believes England deserves the honor.

"She does all the little things that nobody else sees like helping us out with school and grades," Wall said. "Most coaches don't care about your grades, but she cares about your grades. It's more than basketball. It's life. She teaches us life skills and life lessons."

Lester, a guard from Charlotte, N.C., led the Red Hawks this season in scoring this season with 20.0 points per game. She also ranked second in 3-point field goal percentage (38.4), fourth in field goal percentage (45.8) and fifth in rebounds per game (4.4) during the regular season.

She became the first 1,000-point scorer (women's or men's) in school history, breaking the century mark during the final game of the regular season in an 80-37 road victory against Johnston Community College.

This is the second-straight year that Lester has been named All-Region X.

"That's a good honor to have for a second year," Lester said. "I didn't want to fall down into where I didn't get All-Region 10. Since I got it my freshman year, it would be crazy for me not to get it my second year. It was a work in progress."

Despite missing two games at the start of the season, Agrusa returned stronger than ever, powering her way into the Red Hawks record books, as well.

Agrusa's 48 made 3-pointers are the most in a season in Catawba Valley women's basketball history. She's averaged 10.6 points, 4.5 rebounds and a team-best 5.1 assists per contest in the regular season.

The All-Region X honor is the first for Agrusa, who is from Franklin, N.C.

"I didn't know about it until coach told me and Shaniya about it," Agrusa said of her All-Region X selection. "I think it's an honor, especially that the coaches and players see that me and Shaniya are kind of leaders on our own. I think that is an honor that people actually see that."

McAbee and Mitchell are two of 12 athletes named to the 2017-18 Region X All-Academic team.

Both athletes must have maintained at least a 3.7 GPA to be eligible for the honor. McAbee currently has a 3.8 GPA, while Mitchell carries a 3.76 GPA.

England, who serves as Learning Assistance Center Coordinator on top of her women's basketball coaching duties at Catawba Valley, is constantly striving for excellence from her players when it comes to academics.

"When they come through my program, I tell them right from the beginning that I produce student athletes," England said. "Academic-wise, this is the fourth year in a row that we've been an all-academic team. We strive for that every single year. I'm proud of all of my young ladies. Out of 11 players, we have nine girls with a 3.0 GPA or higher. That right there says a lot about our program."

2017-18 All-Region X
Shaniya Lester, Catawba Valley
Tory Agrusa, Catawba Valley
Katisha Hyman, Brunswick
J'nai Miller, Guilford Tech
Shontai Totten, Louisburg
Jada Faison, Guilford Tech
Andreal Bass, Cape Fear
Khadijah Daniels, Wake Tech
De'Najah Porter, Cape Fear
Teana Lewis, Louisburg
Dejah Horne, Fayetteville Tech
Ze'Nya Butler, Patrick Henry
Shauntierra O'Guin, Bryant & Stratton

Player of the Year
Katisha Hyman, Bruswick

Coach of the Year
Tisha England, Catawba Valley

2017-18 Region X All-Academic
Alizeya Mitchell, Catawba Valley
Monique McAbee, Catawba Valley
Shai Robinson, Brunswick
Danielle Brisson, Brunswick
Sydney Harrison, Brunswick
Jayda Malone, Brunswick
Tiara Williams, Bryant & Stratton
Jazmyne Jackson, Cape Fear
Tracey Kemp, Cape Fear
Ceyanna Harrison, Cape Fear
Tammaria Smith, Lenoir
Tisha Teachey, Lenoir