Esonwune Named All-Met Player of the Year

York College junior center, Marcel Esonwune was honored by the National Invitational Tournament and Met-Basketball Writers Association and was named the 2009-10 All-Met Division III College Basketball Player of the Year at the 77th Annual NIT/ MBWA Haggerty Award Dinner Wednesday evening.

Esonwune has already earned a handful of honors this season.  The 6-6 center from Nigeria, was named to the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) All-America First Team and the D3hoops.com All-America Second Team.  Regionally he was named, the NABC Atlantic Regional Player of the Year, Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Metro Region Player of the Year, D3hoops.com Atlantic Region Player of the Year and the CUNY Athletic Conference Player of the Year.

Esonwune had a breakout year during the 2009-10 campaign.  He finished the season as the nation’s leading shot blocker, averaging 4.2 blocks per game.  He also ranked second in the country in rebounding, averaging 14.8 boards per game, and was fifth in the CUNYAC in scoring, with 18.6 points per game.  In addition, he recorded double-doubles in 26 games and triple-doubles in three games.     

He led the Cardinals to the finals of both the CUNYAC Championship and the ECAC Championship.  The Cardinals came up short in both title games but they finished with a school record of 23 wins.

“Marcel is one of the most exciting players I have ever coached,” said York head coach Ronald St. John.  “His work ethic has allowed him to reach great heights.  To have him achieve such honors and still have him back for another season is a coach’s dream.”

The Complete All-Met Team

FIRST TEAM: Marcel Esonwune, York, 6-6, jr, C, Lagos Nigeria; Richard Jean-Baptiste, Brooklyn, 6-4, sr, F, Queens; Marvin Billups, Purchase, 6-5, jr, F, Chester, N.Y.; Abdoulaye Ouedraogo, Wm. Paterson, 6-8, sr, F, Newark, N.J.; George Kunkel, Baruch, 6-3, sr, F, Glendale, N.Y.; Lionel Hilaire, Baruch, 5-11, jr, G, Far Rockaway, N.Y.

SECOND TEAM: Joseph Ellis, Wm. Paterson, 6-1, sr, G, Newark, N.J.; Ryan Kearney, Centenary, 6-5, sr, F, No. Arlington, N.J.; DaQuan Brooks, Western Connecticut St., 5-9, so, G, Bristol, Conn.; Martin Leibovich, Yeshiva, 6-5, sr, G, Buenos Aires; Deshawn Singleton, Rutgers-Newark, 6-4, sr, F, Passaic, N.J.; Jonathan Jones, Kean, 6-5, jr, F, Linden, N.J.; Rocco Rubino, Hunter, 6-3, jr, G, Brooklyn.

THIRD TEAM: James Johnson, Rutgers-Newark, 5-11, sr, G, Summit, N.J.; Justin White, Bard, 5-9, sr, G, New York; Keith Jensen, NYU, 6-4, sr, F, San Diego; Andre Cooper, New York Maritime, 6-2, sr, G, Baltimore; Ryan Samuel, USMMA, 5-9, sr, G, Cedar Hill, Texas; LaQuan Peterkin, Ramapo, 6-6, so, F-C, Paterson, N.J.

Player of the Year: Marcel Esonwune, York.

Co-coaches of the Year: Jeff Charney, Purchase; Jose Rebimbas, Wm. Paterson

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