Tyree Ihenacho named Summit League Freshman of the Year; All-Newcomer honors

Rookie point guard led team in assists and steals
UND team huddle.
UND team huddle.(KSFY)
Published: Mar. 4, 2021 at 10:12 PM CST
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GRAND FORKS, N.D. (UND Athletics) - Freshman point guard Tyree Ihenacho was named the Summit League’s Freshman of the Year as well as earning a selection to the league’s All-Newcomer Team on Thursday. The voting was conducted by the league’s coaches, sports information directors and local media.

The Prior Lake, Minn., native stuffed the stat sheet for the Fighting Hawks during an 8-8 league slate, averaging just under 10 points per game, dishing out 4.3 assists per contest, grabbing nearly six boards, and averaging 1.5 steals.

Ihenacho was on triple-double watch throughout a majority of league play, registering five games in double figures on the scoring side, three games with at least 10 rebounds and had five-or-more assists in six tilts.

The rookie exploded for a season-high 19 points on 8-of-16 shooting while grabbing seven boards in the win over Denver on Feb. 5. He ended the regular season with three straight games in double figures for rebounds, including a career-high 12 in the finale win at Omaha. He was at his best distributing the ball in a weekend sweep over the then-first place Coyotes, combining for 15 helpers compared to only three turnovers over those two games.

Ihenacho is the only player in the Summit League to rank inside the top-10 in rebounding (10th), assists (2nd) and steals (3rd). He is also the first freshman to earn rookie of the year honors in the program’s Division I era (2008-present) and second in program history, joining Jeff Brandt in 2001.

North Dakota will battle No. 4 seed Oral Roberts in the quarterfinal round of the Summit League Tournament on Sunday at 5:45 p.m. from Sioux Falls.

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