2003-04 MIAC Men's Basketball Athletes of the Week

March 1, 2004
Gustavus Adolphus College freshman post Phil Sowden (Brooklyn Park, Minn./ Park Center HS) averaged 18.5 points and 5.0 rebounds per game to help the Gusties defeat Bethel 76-59 in the MIAC Playoff semifinals and Macalester 75-69 in the MIAC Championship. On Thursday against Bethel, Sowden was nine-of-ten from the field and three-of-five from the free throw line for a career high 22 points. On Saturday against Macalester, Sowden contributed 15 points and seven rebounds including several key baskets in the final minutes of the game to assure the Gusties of the victory. He played 30 minutes or more in both games. Sowden, who has started every game for the Gusties this season, is averaging 9.3 points and 4.2 rebounds per game. The Gusties, who will open NCAA Tournament play on Saturday, are currently 22-5 overall. Stats for the week: FG/FGA: 15-28 (.535), FT/FTA: 7-11 (.636), Rebounds: 10 (5.0 rpg), Assists: 2 (1.0 apg), Turnovers: 1 (0.5 pg), Steals: 3 (1.5 spg), Minutes: 61 (30.5 mpg).

February 23, 2004
Gustavus Adolphus College senior forward Tim Brown (Bloomington, Minn./ Jefferson) averaged 21.5 points per game to help Gustavus defeat MIAC playoff qualifiers Bethel (65-49) and Carleton (66-46) last week. The Gusties won the MIAC regular season title with a record of 18-2. Brown was 9-for-9 from the field and 4-for-4 from three point range for 22 points against Bethel and 8-for-12 from the field and 5-of-6 from three-point range for 21 points against Carleton. Brown made an amazing 17-21 (.809) shots from the field and 9-10 (.910) from three-point range during the week. He also scored his 1,000th career point on Saturday against Carleton. Stats for the week: FG/FGA - 17/21 (.809), 3-PT. FG/FGA - 9/10 (.900), FT/FTA - 0-1, Reb. - 8 (4.0 rpg), Points - 43 (21.5 ppg), Assists - 2 (1.0 apg), Turnovers - 4 (2.0 tpg), Steals - 0, Blocks - 0, Minutes - 69 (34.5 mpg).

February 16, 2004
University of St. Thomas senior center Nick Schader (Shoreview, Minn./Totino-Grace HS) made a game-winning shot and a game-tying shot that forced overtime and made 21-of-27 from the field (78%) to help the Tommies clinch an MIAC playoff berth for the 16th time in 17 seasons. In Wednesday's overtime loss to Macalester, Schader had a career-high 31 points and had 11 rebounds and made a basket with : 01 to play to force overtime. In Saturday's 63-61 win at Carleton, his putback with 29 seconds left broke a 61-61 tie and proved to be a game winner. Counting his first two seasons at Waldorf College, Schader has 1,231 points and 653 rebounds on his college career. The Tommies are 11-12 overall and 9-9 in the MIAC with two games left in the regular season. Two-game totals: 43 points, 15 rebounds, 21-27 FG, 1-1 Ft, 2 asst, 2 TO, 2 blocks, 1 steal.

February 9, 2004
Concordia College senior guard Josh Downey (Bigfork, Mont.) averaged 18.6 points per game, shot 60.0% from the field and 64.7% from 3-point range in helping Concordia to a 3-0 record this past week. With the three victories, the Cobbers clinched a berth in the MIAC postseason playoff for the first time since the 200-01 season. On Monday against Bethel, Downey scored 17 points and collected four rebounds. He was 6-for-10 from the field, 3-for-5 from beyond the arc and 2-for-2 from the free throw line. He was part of the record-setting performance by the Cobbers at the foul line. As a team, Concordia went 25-for-25 from the free throw line. That mark set an MIAC record and was three shots away from setting the NCAA DIII record. It is the most consecutive free throws in a game this season by any team in any division. At St. Thomas on Wednesday, Downey scored a team-high 16 points, had two assists and hauled in four assists. He was 5-for-10 from the field, 3-for-7 from 3-point range and 3-for-4 from the free throw line. In Concordia's third win of the week, a 21-point victory over Carleton, Downey scored a team-high 17 points and grabbed four rebounds. He was 6-for-10 from the floor, 3-for-5 from 3-point range and 2-for-2 from the line. Downey's totals for the week: Pts: 18.6 ppg; Reb: 3.6 rpg; Asts: 1.67 apg; FG% 60.0% (18-for-30); 3-Pt%: 64.7 (11-for-17); FT%: 90.0% (9-for-10).

February 2, 2004
Macalester College senior forward Ben Van Thorre (Minneapolis, Minn. / Washburn) averaged 25.5 points, 7.0 rebounds and 5.5 assists while shooting 57% from the field and committing just one turnover in wins last week over Augsburg and Concordia. He had 20 points and six assists in Macalester's 86-81 win Wednesday at Augsburg. In his team's 86-75 win Saturday over Concordia, Van Thorre had 31 points, eight rebounds and five assists. His 31 points against the Cobbers brings his career total to 1,538 - just three short of setting a new school record. Stats for the Week: (2 games) 16-28 FG (.571), 1-4 3's (.250), 18-24 FT (.750), 14 reb (7.0 rpg.), 51 points (25.5 ppg.), 11 ast., 1 to, 1 blk., 2 stl., 34.5 min/g.

January 26, 2004
University of St. Thomas senior guard Neal Anderson (Eden Prairie, Minn.) scored a career-high 29 points in a crucial Tommie road win at Saint John's, averaged 23.5 ppg and made 15-of-17 at the foul line in the Tommies' 1-1 week. In Monday's 76-72 home loss to Bethel, he had 18 points and seven rebounds. In Wednesday's win in Collegeville, he scored eight points to fuel a 10-0 run to open the second half that built a 15-point lead in a 65-60 victory. Anderson didn't play basketball his last three years of high school or his first two years of college and is starting for the first time. On the season he's made 49-of-114 from 3-point range (43%). The Tommies are 4-7 in the MIAC and still alive in the playoff race. Two-game totals: 13-24 FG, 6-14 3FG, 15-17 FT, 47p, 10r, 4a, 8 to, 1 bl, 2 st.

January 19, 2004
Macalester College junior guard Erik Jackson (Evergreen, Colo.) shot 59% from the field, 69% from three-point range and averaged 19.5 points in Macalester wins last week over St. Olaf and Hamline. He was 7-for-8 on second half three-pointers in the two games as the Scots turned slight halftime leads into decisive victories. Jackson had 20 points, 18 in the second half, in a 73-54 win over the Oles. He went 5-for-6 on treys and scored 19 points in Macalester's 84-67 win over the Pipers. Stats for the Week: (2 games) 13-22 FG (.591), 9-13 3's (692), 4-4 FTs, 6 reb, 39 points (19.5 ppg.), 4 ast., 4 TO's, 0 blk., 0 stl., 34.0 min/game.

January 12, 2004
Gustavus Adolphus College junior forward Doug Espenson (Mankato, Minn./ East) averaged 22.6 points and 5.3 rebounds per game to help the Gusties compile a record of 2-1 during the week. Espenson, the first player off the bench for Gustavus scored 16 points in a 66-54 loss at Macalester, 20 points in a 70-61 win at home against St. Thomas and 32 points in a 66-58 win at Saint Mary's. He almost single-handedly guided the Gusties past Saint Mary's as he was 10-11 from the field (including 4-of-5 from three-point range), and 8-of-10 from the free throw line, while also grabbing seven rebounds and blocking two shots. Espenson scored 22 of the Gusties' 32 points in the first half against the Cardinals. He is averaging 13.5 points and 4.5 rebounds per game for the Gusties who are currently 8-4 overall and 6-1 in the MIAC. Stats for the week: FG: 16-28 (.571), 3-pt FG: 6-11 (.545), FT: 14-17 (.823), Reb.: 16 (5.3 pg), Points: 68 (22.6 pg), Assists: 3 (1.0 pg), Turnovers: 8 (2.67 pg), Blocks: 5 (1.67 pg), Steals: 3 (1.0 pg), Minutes: 82 (27.3 pg).

Bethel College junior forward Travis Jones (Willmar, Minn.) averaged 22.3 points, 5.3 rebounds, 2 steals, and 2.3 blocks as Bethel went 3-0 on the week with wins over Augsburg, St. Olaf, and Saint John's. In the Royals 77-62 win over Augsburg, Jones tallied 22 points (7-14 FG, 3-6 3pt FG, 6-8 FT) and 4 rebounds in 28 minutes. He also had 2 blocks and 2 steals. In a 77-68 win over St. Olaf, Jones had 18 points in 33 minutes (6-21 FG, 6-14 3pt FG) and 8 rebounds. He also had 3 blocks and 1 steal. In Bethel's 95-87 overtime win over SJU on Saturday, Jones had a game-high 27 points (11-20 FG, 5-9 3pt. FG, 0-2 FT), 4 rebounds, 2 blocks, and 3 steals in 40 minutes. Bethel came back from a 10-point deficit with 5:05 remaining. Week totals: 24-55 FG, 14-29 3pt FG, 6-10 FT: 22.3 ppg 5.3 rpg 2 spg 2.3 bpg.

January 5, 2004
Saint John's University freshman guard Matt Ohme (Bloomington, Minn./Jefferson HS) averaged 21.7 points and 3.3 assists in three games last week. Against Husson, Maine in a 77-68 win on Dec. 29, Ohme had 25 points, including seven three-point baskets, and five assists. On Dec. 31, Ohme had 20 points in a 86-79 loss against Southern Maine. In MIAC play on Jan. 3, Ohme had 20 points, three rebounds and three steals in a 81-67 win over Saint Mary's. On the season, Ohme is averaging 14.6 ppg. SJU is 5-5 overall and 3-2 in the MIAC. Ohme's stats for the week: 3 GP, 3 GS, 105 MP, 23-34 FG (67.6%), 14-20 3FG (70.0%), 5-9 FT (55.6%), 5 REB, 9 PF, 10 A, 11 TO, 1 BLK, 5 STL, 65 PTS.

December 15, 2003
Bethel College junior guard Tim Gilbert (Plymouth, Minn./Armstrong H.S.) averaged 26.3 points in the Royals three wins over Saint Mary's, Hamline, and Crown last week. In Bethel's 90-74 win over Saint Mary's, Gilbert made 7 of 10 shots and all 13 of his free throws to finish with a career-high 28 points. He also added 4 rebounds and 4 steals. In the Royals 78-72 win over Hamline, Gilbert had a new career-high as he finished with 30 points, including a three-pointer with five seconds remaining to send the game into overtime. In a 81-58 win over Crown on Saturday, Gilbert finished with 21 points, 8 rebounds, 5 assists, 4 blocks, and 3 steals. Statline for the week: 26.3 ppg (26-43 FG {60.5%}, 12-20 3pt. FG {60.0%}, 15-15 FT, 5.0 rpg, 9 assists, 6 blocks, 10 steals, 32.3 minutes per game).

December 8, 2003
Saint John's University sophomore post/wing Paul Henrichs (Stetsonville, Wis.) averaged 16.0 points and 14.0 rebounds in two victories last week for the Johnnies. Henrichs had 11 points and 14 rebounds in a 71-55 win at St. Thomas on Dec. 6. He had 21 points and 14 rebounds in a 67-43 win over Hamline on Dec. 6. Henrichs is averaging 19.8 points and 10.3 rebounds per game this season. SJU is 3-1 overall and 2-0 in the MIAC. Stats: 2 GP, 64 MP, 12-22 FG, 8-14 FT, 32 PTS, 28 REB, 5 AS, 4 STL, 4 PF, 1 TO, 1 BLK.

December 1, 2003
Carleton College senior center Tanner Schieck (Austin, Minn.) averaged 16.7 points and 10.7 rebounds, connecting on 71.0 percent of his field goal attempts, as Carleton won two of three games this past week. In Tuesday's season-opening win over Upper Iowa, Schieck was 9-for-12 from the floor for 20 points and added 14 rebounds in Carleton's 76-46 victory. In this weekend's UW-Stout Turkey Shootout, Schieck scored 21 points and grabbed 13 rebounds in Friday's 73-40 win over Wisconsin Lutheran. Schieck made 10-of-14 shots in the victory. In Saturday's 61-54 loss to host UW-Stout, Schieck scored nine points and grabbed five rebounds on 3-for-5 shooting. Stats for week: 3 games, 22-31 FG (71.0%), 0-2 3-pt FG, 6-12 FT (50.0%), 32 reb. (10.7 rpg), 3 ast. (1.0 apg), 2 blocks (0.7 bpg), 6 steals (2.0 spg), 50 points (16.7 ppg).

November 24, 2003
Macalester College senior forward Ben Van Thorre (Minneapolis, Minn. / Washburn) was named to the Cal. State-Pueblo Al-Kaly Shrine Classic all-tournament team after averaging 20.5 points and 8.5 rebounds while shooting 53% from the field in two games last weekend. He now moves into the third spot on the school's all-time career scoring list with 1,240 points. Van Thorre had 25 points and 10 rebounds in just 21 minutes in a 75-70 loss to Colorado College and in a 76-72 defeat to Colorado State-Pueblo had 16 points, seven boards and three assists. Stats for the Week: 18-34 FG (.529), 1-5 3's, 4-6 FT, 17 reb (8.5 rpg.), 41 pts. (20.5 ppg.), 4 ast., 4 To's, 1 blk, 3 stl., 60 min.