The St. Thomas Aquinas College basketball teams were well-represented for their successful season in the All-Met Basketball Writers' Association Awards announced this week.
On the women's side, STAC soared to a 17-1 record in East Coast Conference action to take the regular-season championship, earning an NCAA Tournament berth for the second straight year and finishing with an impressive 26-5 record, including a 15-0 mark at Aquinas Hall. On the heels of being named Coach of the Year by the ECC, Kim Lusk took her second such honor in as many years from the All-Met Writers and her third overall, having previously taken the title in 2011.
One reason for that success was the strong all-around ability of Emily Preston, who was named as a First-Team honoree. A native of Brisbane, Australia, Emily was second on the team in scoring with 11.0 ppg, and first in rebounding with 7.2 per game, starting all 31 games while averaging just under 30 minutes per contest. Preston also earned All-Conference kudos from the ECC.
After losing several key players from the previous season, the men's squad found itself in the unusual position of being something of an underdog, before banding together to prove any detractors wrong by advancing to the NCAA Tournament East Region finals. Osbel Caraballo was spectacular in his freshman season, starting all 32 games this season. The native of Bolivar, Venezuela, led the squad with 13.2 points per game and placed third in rebounding at 6.9 rpg. Having already been named a First Team All-ECC selection, Caraballo added the same distinction among the All-Met group.
The other half of the powerful freshman tandem, Demetre Roberts, had already earned ECC Rookie of the Year kudos while taking a Second Team All-Conference distinction. A native of Mount Vernon, NY, Roberts also started all 32 games, leading the squad in assists while placing second in scoring with 11.8 per game. For his efforts, Demetre was also named to the All-Met Second Team.
The All-Met players and coaches will be honored Tuesday, April 30, at the 86th NIT/MBWA Haggerty Awards dinner at the Westchester Marriott, Tarrytown, NY.