Townsend, Batyatin, Alexander earn All-AMC honors
March 4, 2009
Three Point Park men’s basketball players earned All-American Mideast Conference honors Wednesday when the voting results by the league’s coaches were announced.
Senior forward Tony Townsend (Canton, Ohio/Timken) was named to the All-AMC second team, and sophomore guard Anton Batyatin (Vladivostok, Russia) was named All-AMC honorable mention.
Forward Devon Alexander (McKeesport/McKeesport) was chosen for the All-AMC Freshmen team.
The AMC selected 10 players for the all-conference first team, and the next 10 vote getters made up the second team. There were 15 players selected as honorable-mention honorees.
Forward Joe Shardo was named the AMC Player of the Year with averages of 18.5 points and 6.4 rebounds per game for NAIA Division II No. 4 Walsh (27-3, 12-1). Walsh won the AMC tournament with a 97-85 win over Mt. Vernon Nazarene Tuesday.
First-year Cedarville coach Pat Estepp was named AMC Coach of the Year after leading the Yellow Jackets to the regular season AMC title and No. 2 ranking in Wednesday’s final NAIA Division II poll. Ajay Rutldege, a forward from Daemen was chosen the AMC Newcomer of the Year.
Townsend (at right) averaged 14.3 points and a team-high 9.5 rebounds per game this season. The 6-6 forward was tied for fourth in the AMC with 12 double-doubles in his second season at Point Park. Townsend was second in the league in rebounding and led the league in offensive boards.
Townsend was one of two players in the AMC to average a double-double in conference games. The Canton, Ohio, native posted 16.5 points and 10.7 rebounds in 11 conference games.
He registered a career-high 32 points to go with 12 rebounds at Cedarville Feb. 14. Townsend had 23 points and 19 rebounds at Shawnee State Jan. 6, and the 19 rebounds is tied for the most by any AMC player this season.
Batyatin (pictured left) led Point Park in scoring at 15.7 points per game, a figure that ranked 11th in the AMC. The 6-2 sophomore recorded nine 20-point games and increased his scoring average from last year by 8.8 points per game. Batyatin made a team-high 57 3-pointers to rank ninth in the league and led the Pioneers in free-throw shooting (84 percent).
Batyatin had a career-high 31 points versus Malone (Nov. 22). He missed the final two games of the season with a broken leg he suffered at Cedarville (Feb.14).
Alexander averaged 10.0 points per game and led Point Park in field-goal percentage. The 6-5 forward shot 53 percent (110-for-205) from the field and grabbed 3.7 rebounds per game.
He played in all 28 games and earned 15 starts. The McKeesport native (below, right) started 13 of the last 14 games and reached double figures in scoring 10 times. Alexander had a career-high 27 points on 11-for-14 shooting at Daemen (Jan. 17). He was 12-for-12 from the field and scored 25 points versus Cumberlands (Ky.) Nov. 28. Two days after Alexander went perfect from the field, Cumberlands moved up to No. 2 in the NAIA Division I poll.
Point Park was 12-16 overall and 4-9 in the AMC this season. The Pioneers lost several key players from last year’s team including three-time NAIA Division II All-American Chivas Whipple. Point Park also lost All-AMC North players D’Verron Harris and Dan Muto from last year’s team that went 16-12.
This season was the first year since 2001-02 that the AMC was not divided into North and South divisions, and the Pioneers missed the playoffs for the first time since 2003-04. Point Park had made the postseason seven of the last eight years and this season had nine players on its 14-man roster who were freshmen or sophomores.