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  • COLLEGE BASKETBALL

    Cascade Conference stars have local flavor

    Newcomb player of year; Dixon, Gida land on the first team
  • Players with ties to the Rogue Valley dominated season-ending all-conference voting in Cascade Collegiate Conference women's basketball.
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  • Players with ties to the Rogue Valley dominated season-ending all-conference voting in Cascade Collegiate Conference women's basketball.
    Former South Medford star Brittney Newcomb, a senior guard for Eastern Oregon and the league's leading scorer, was named player of the year.
    North Medford graduate Karissa Dixon, an Oregon Tech senior guard and the preseason player of the year, made the first team for the third straight season.
    Southern Oregon led the way with three first-team selections, including former Ashland player Allison Gida. The senior was joined on the top unit by Raider sophomores Carly Meister and Kristen Schoenherr.
    The 12-team unit was announced by the league Tuesday.
    Garnering six of a possible nine first-place votes, Newcomb out-pointed all others.
    The 5-foot-7 guard averaged 22.7 points per game and was the top free-throw shooter, hitting on 91 percent (156 of 172) of her attempts.
    Her free-throw percentage leads the NAIA, and she ranks fourth in scoring average for NAIA Division II.
    Newcomb also led the conference with 3.3 3-point field goals per game. She was chosen conference player of the week three times.
    Dixon is averaging 11.3 points a game and has 54 steals on the season, both second on the team. Her 141 assists leads the Owls and ranks No. 17 in the NAIA.
    Dixon's assist-to-turnover ratio ranks seventh in the NAIA, while the 5-10 guard is grabbing 4.6 rebounds per game.
    She helped the Owls to the conference championship and an automatic berth to the national championships.
    Gida, a 5-foot-11 forward who earned honorable mention recognition last year, spent a majority of the nonleague portion of SOU's schedule getting healthy and exploded once CCC play began.
    She ranked third in the conference in points per game (15.6), fifth in rebounds (8.4), 12th in field-goal percentage (47.2) and 13th in blocks (0.6).
    She was twice named the CCC's player of the week and set single-game career highs in points (28), rebounds (15) and assists (seven) and tied the school record for steals in a game (nine).
    Meister and Schoenherr joined Corban junior Tara Vanweerdhuizen, who doubled as the defensive player of the year, as the only non-seniors on the team.
    Schoenherr, a 5-9 guard who transferred before the season from Centralia Community College, didn't take long to become SOU's most consistent scorer. The left-hander reached double figures in 30 of 33 games — including 24 straight at one point — to average 14.8 points, and was just 13 points shy of becoming the 13th player in program history to score 500 in a season.
    In conference play, she ranked sixth in points (15.2), third in field-goal percentage (55.9), seventh in steals (1.8), 10th in assists (3.6), 15th in free-throw percentage (75.3) and 19th in rebounding (4.8).
    She was twice the CCC player of the week.
    Meister was the freshman of the year a season ago and only improved while taking on a larger role in 2013-14.
    She was 11th in the CCC in points (13.6), seventh in rebounding (7.1), fifth in blocks (1.2) and second in field-goal percentage (58.3).
    The 6-2 forward went from three double-doubles last season to 10 as a sophomore and set career highs in points (27) and rebounds (16).
    Oregon Tech's Ashleigh Vandenbrink was freshman of the year.
    Monica Heuer was the coach of the year after leading Evergreen to its first winning CCC record in nine years in her 13th and final season.
    Other first-teamers were College of Idaho's Chakala Carthen and Erica Martinez, Evergreen's Sammi Clark, Oregon Tech's Kassi Conditt, Northwest's Domi Mendezona and Eastern's Nicole Redd.
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