The Ohio Valley Conference’s Selections for top Player, Newcomer, and Freshman of the past week
Isaiah Canaan, G • Sr., 6-1, 195 • Biloxi, Miss. • Murray State
In two Murray State victories last week Canaan averaged 28.5 points, 4.5 assists and 2.0 steals/game while hitting 51.4 percent (18-of-35) from the field, 45.5 percent (10-of-22) from 3-point range and 91.7 percent (11-of-12) from the free throw line. He opened the week by scoring 35 points (the most by a player in the OVC this season) in a double overtime victory at Morehead State. The All-American scored 17 of his points in the two overtime periods, including 12 of MSU’s 19 points in double overtime; that extra period also included a personal 10-0 run by Canaan (two 3-pointers and six free throws) that allowed the Racers to open up an 11-point lead. The senior hit 5-of-12 3-pointers in the game and also had four assists and two steals in playing 49 of 50 total minutes in the contest. In Saturday’s come-from-behind win over South Dakota State in a Ramada Worldwide BracketBusters game, Canaan hit 5-of-10 3-pointers and scored 22 points, while also dishing out five assists and netting two steals. After Murray State fell behind 47-33 with 17:12 to play, Canaan scored seven points and dished out two assists in just over four minutes to spark a run that saw the Racers erase that deficit and grab the lead for good with 9:18 to play. It marks the third time this season and 10th time in his career that Canaan has been named OVC Player of the Week. Canaan currently ranks eighth nationally in scoring (21.2 points/game) and is just 54 points away from becoming the 17th player in OVC history to score 2,000 career points.
Others Nominated: Trevor Noack, Belmont; Morris Woods, Eastern Illinois; Mike DiNunno, Eastern Kentucky; Tarvin Gaines, Jacksonville State; Marland Smith, Southeast Missouri; Tim Johnson, SIUE; Patrick Miller, Tennessee State; Dennis Ogbe, Tennessee Tech; Myles Taylor, UT Martin.
Corey Walden, G • So., 6-2, 206 • Daytona Beach, Fla. • Eastern Kentucky
Walden averaged 17.5 points and 4.0 rebounds/game while hitting 57.1 percent (12-of-21) from the field, 50 percent (4-of-8) from 3-point range and 87.5 percent (7-of-8) from the free throw line in a pair of Eastern Kentucky games. Walden had 15 points, four rebounds, two assists and a steal to open the week as the Colonels topped Austin Peay by 38 points; Walden hit 5-of-8 field goals and 4-of-5 free throws in the win. In Saturday’s Ramada Worldwide BracketBusters game at Horizon League leader Valparaiso Walden hit 7-of-13 shots (3-of-5 3-pointers) on his way to a game-high 20 points; the transfer from Brevard Community College also added four rebounds and a steal.
Tim Johnson, G • Jr., 6-4, 200 • Harvey, Ill. • SIUE
Johnson, the transfer from George Washington, averaged 20.0 points, 5.0 rebounds and 2.5 assists/game while hitting 60.9 percent (14-of-23) from the field, 55.6 percent (5-of-9) from 3-point range and a perfect 7-of-7 from the free throw line in a pair of close SIUE losses. Johnson set a season-high with 18 points against Tennessee State and followed that with a new career-high of 22 points at Central Arkansas. In the TSU contest he hit 6-of-11 field goals (2-of-4 3-pointers), grabbed three rebounds, dished out two assists and blocked a shot. At Central Arkansas he hit 8-of-12 field goal attempts (3-of-5 3-pointers), pulled down seven rebounds, dished out three assists, blocked a shot and had a steal.
Others Nominated: Sherman Blanford, Eastern Illinois; Chad Posthumus, Morehead State; Jeremiah Samarrippas, Tennessee Tech; Bobby Jones, UT Martin.
Alex Austin, G • Fr., 6-4, 190 • Chicago, Ill. • Eastern Illinois
Austin averaged 9.0 points, 2.0 rebounds and 1.0 steals/game while hitting 85.7 percent (6-of-7) from the free throw line in games against Belmont and Northern Illinois last week. Austin came off the bench to score 10 points, net two steals and block a shot in the loss to OVC leader Belmont. He capped the week in a BracketBusters victory at Northern Illinois as he scored eight points and pulled down four rebounds.
Jeffery Moss, F • Fr., 6-4, 180 • Madison, Ala. • Murray State
In two Murray State victories last week Moss came off the bench to average 5.5 points, 4.0 rebounds, 4.0 assists, 1.5 steals and 1.0 blocks/game while hitting 44.4 percent (4-of-9) from the field. In a double overtime victory at Morehead State, Moss scored four points, dished out six assists, had three steals, blocked two shots and pulled down a rebound in 28 minutes of action. In Saturday’s victory over South Dakota State in the Ramada Worldwide BracketBusters series, the freshman scored seven points, pulled down seven rebounds and dished out two assists in 29 minutes of play.