SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – The Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC) announced its 2018-19 Men's Basketball All-Conference Teams and major award winners Monday afternoon. All nine CCC men's basketball schools had at least one student-athlete garnering All-CCC recognition. 2018-19 Regular-Season Champion Nichols had the most representatives with four.
Roger Williams senior Austin Coene (Tyngsborough, Mass.) was recognized for both his on and off court contributions as he was voted the CCC Player of the Year and the CCC Scholar-Athlete. Endicott's Joe Shehadi (Dorset, Vt.) took home Defensive Player of the Year honors, while Salve Regina's Mikey Spencer (Abington, Mass.) was named Rookie of the Year. Gordon head coach Tod Murphy took home his first CCC Coach of the Year award, while Wentworth was named the Team Sportsmanship winner.
Voting for the All-CCC Teams and major awards was conducted by the nine CCC men's basketball head coaches following the conclusion of the regular season.
As the CCC Player of the Year, Coene also earned a spot on the All-Conference First Team. Also earning First Team recognition were the Nichols pair of Marcos Echevarria (Lynn, Mass.) and DeAnte Bruton (New London, Conn.). The three remaining All-CCC First Teamers were Endicott's Keith Brown (Pelham, N.H.), Gordon's Eric Demers (Acushnet, Mass.), and Western New England's Mikey Pettway (Bridgeport, Conn.).
The Bison were also the only school to have two student-athletes named All-CCC Second Teamers. They were Jerome Cunningham (Westbury, N.Y.) and Matt Morrow (Leicester, Mass.). Joining them on the All-CCC Second Team were the Gulls' Matt McDevitt (Cumberland, Maine) and the Scots' Garrisson Duvivier (Brockton, Mass.). Stephen Azums (Hyde Park, Mass.), who was Wentworth's only All-Conference representative rounded out the Second Team.
There were six members of the All-CCC Third Team with each student-athlete representing a different institution. Jared Thorpe-Johnson (Dorchester, Mass.) was Curry's lone All-Conference representative, while Alex Kravchuk (Manfield, Conn.) represented the University of New England as its only honoree. Salve's Spencer was also his team's lone All-CCC selection. Rounding out the All-Conference list was Gordon's Noah Szilagyi (Highlands Ranch, Colo.), Roger Williams' Drew Hart (Cheshire, Conn.), and WNE's Mike McGuire (Garden City, N.Y.).
PLAYER OF THE YEAR/CCC SCHOLAR-ATHLETE
Austin Coene, Roger Williams
Coene was one of the most well-rounded student-athletes in the league this year ranking in the top five in a number of categories. He was the league's top scorer at 25.6 points per game, while also ranking third in assists (4.5 apg), fourth in rebounding (9.2 rpg), and fourth in steals (1.8 per game). His scoring ability also ranks him seventh in all of NCAA Division III. Coene had 11 double-doubles this year and some stellar scoring games. He score 30-plus points in eight games, topping out at 42 in just the second game of the season. He finished the season strong earning three of the final four CCC Athlete of the Week honors in the weeks ending Jan. 20, Jan. 27, and Feb. 10.
In the classroom, the senior was just as impressive. The finance major currently spots a 3.9 cumulative GPA and has been on the Dean's List every semester at Roger Williams. He has also been recogonized on the regional and national levels earning CoSIDA Academic All-District honors in his sophomore season and CoSIDA First Team Academic All-American distinction in his junior year.
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
Joe Shehadi, Endicott
Shehadi was a shutdown defender for an Endicott squad that allowed a league-low 72.9 points per game in conference play. Overall, the Gulls held opponents to 74.8 points per game, which ranked them third in the league. Shehadi led the team in minutes per game at 29.5 and was second on the team in steals with 25. He was also a solid rebounder averaging 5.0 rebounds per game.
ROOKIE OF THE YEAR
Mikey Spencer, Salve Regina
Spencer was a go-to player for the Seahawks in his first collegiate season as he played in every game this year, starting all but three. He averaged 17.8 points per game, which was ninth in the conference, and averaged 30.9 minutes per game. The freshman guard did a lot of his damage from downtown as he ranked fifth in the CCC in three-pointers with 72. There were five games in which he hit at least five threes. He had double-digit scoring games in all, but four of Salve's contents, including a season-high 38 against Colby-Sawyer. Spencer's Rookie of the Year credentials were clear during the season as he won CCC Rookie of the Week honors in seven of the 12 weeks during the season (Weeks ending Nov. 18, Dec. 12, Dec. 30, Jan 6, Jan. 13, Jan. 27, and Feb. 10).
COACH OF THE YEAR
Tod Murphy, Gordon
Murphy earns his first CCC Coach of the Year honor, now in his 10th at the helm of the Gordon squad. He led the Fighting Scots to a 21-4 overall (13-3 CCC) record, earning them the No. 2 seed in this year's upcoming CCC Men's Basketball Championship. Shot prevention was one of the keys to Gordon's success this year as they feature the league's lowest opponent's field goal percentage (41.3), while also being one of Division III's top shot-blocking teams at 4.9 blocks per game (16th in DIII). While Gordon is seeded second in this year's tournament bracket, it holds the distinction of being the only conference team to defeat top-seeded Nichols during the regular season. Murphy's team was also ranked eighth in the Northeast in the last published NCAA Division III Regional Rankings.
2018-19 ALL-CCC MEN'S BASKETBALL TEAMS
FIRST TEAM ALL-CCC
G - Keith Brown, Jr., Endicott
G - DeAnte Bruton, Jr., Nichols
G - Austin Coene, Sr., Roger Williams
G - Eric Demers, Jr., Gordon
G - Marcos Echevarria, Sr., Nichols
G - Mikey Pettway, Sr., Western New England
SECOND TEAM ALL-CCC
F - Stephen Azums, Jr., Wentworth
F - Jerome Cunningham, Jr., Nichols
F - Garrisson Duvivier, Sr., Gordon
F - Matt McDevitt, So., Endicott
F - Matt Morrow, So., Nichols
THIRD TEAM ALL-CCC
F - Drew Hart, So., Roger Williams
G - Alex Kravchuk, So., U. of New England
G - Mike McGuire, Jr., Western New England
F - Mikey Spencer, Fr., Salve Regina
G - Noah Szilagyi, Sr., Gordon
G/F - Jared Thorpe-Johnson, Jr., Curry
Player of the Year/CCC Scholar-Athlete - Austin Coene, Roger Williams
Defensive Player of the Year - Joe Shehadi, Endicott
Rookie of the Year - Mikey Spencer, Salve Regina
Coach of the Year - Tod Murphy, Gordon
Team Sportsmanship - Wentworth
ABOUT THE COMMONWEALTH COAST CONFERENCE
The Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC), founded in 1984, is an NCAA Division III athletic conference comprised of nine full member and one associate member institutions throughout the New England region. Its membership aims to provide student-athletes with a positive experience in their pursuit of excellence through high academic standards, quality competition, and a meaningful student life. The conference administers championships in 18 intercollegiate sports.