Pacific Men's Basketball - Joe Ford Leads Five Tigers On Big West All-Conference Teams: Sam Willard Earns Big West Conference Player Of The Week Honors
Pacific senior Joe Ford (Altadena, Calif.) led five Tigers on all-league teams by earning All-Big West Conference First Team honors and being named Big West Defensive Player of the Year when the league's yearly awards were announced on Monday, March 8. Juniors Sam Willard (Pierre, S.D.) and Demetrece Young (Oklahoma City, Okla.) each earned All-Big West Conference Honorable Mention honors. Allen Huddleston (Merced, Calif.) was named to the Big West All-Freshman Team, while junior Pat Eveland (San Diego, Calif.) was named Sixth Man of the Year.
Willard also was named Big West Conference Player of the Week on Monday, March 8 after helping the Tigers earn a share of the Big West regular season title.
Ford leads the Tigers with 30 blocks and is second with 30 steals. Usually guarding the opponent's best player, Ford anchors a defense that is 12th in the nation in scoring defense. He also had 80 assists for the Tigers, with just 37 turnovers. He is shooting 64.9% from the field overall, and 67.7% from the field in league games. Joe is second on the team with 165 rebounds, with 70 on the offensive end. It is Joe's first all-conference honor, and he is the Big West Conference Defensive Player of the Year for the second straight year.
Willard leads the Tigers with 11.1 points and 8.1 rebounds per game. Coming on strong at the end of the year, Sam is averaging 16.3 points and 9.0 rebounds per contest over the last seven games. He has 615 career points and his next rebound will be the 500th of his career. Willard leads the Tigers with 32 steals and is second on the team with 17 blocks on the year. He also earned his first career Big West Player of the Week award on March 8. It is the first Big West postseason award for Sam.
This week, Willard had his fifth and sixth double-doubles of the season in Pacific's road sweep at Cal State Fullerton and Cal State Northridge. In addition to 14 points and 12 boards at Cal State Fullerton, he added a career-high four assists. Willard picked up his third 20 point game of the year with 20 points at Cal State Northridge on Saturday. He played a career-high 38 minutes in each game, helping the Tigers to become the only Big West team to pick up road wins at both Cal State Fullerton and Cal State Northridge. He averaged 17.0 points and 11.5 rebounds per game on the week.
Young is second on the team in scoring (9.5 ppg), but leads the Tigers in scoring in Big West games (11.5 ppg). He has hit a team-best 62 three-pointers on the season, and also leads the team with a 39.0% clip from three-point range. Demetrece leads the team with 87 assists with just 36 turnovers, a 2.41 assist/turnover ratio. He led the league in three-pointers per game in conference games (2.56 3pg). It is Young's first postseason award.
Huddleston is averaging 4.9 points per game in his first year as a Tiger. He is fourth on the team with 20 three-pointers and 16 steals. He had a career-high 14 points on two occasions, including the March 4th game at Cal State Fullerton. It is Huddleston's first postseason award.
Eveland has come off the bench in all of Pacific's 30 games. He is fifth on the team with 7.8 points per game and second with 49 three-pointers. In Big West games, Pat average 8.9 points per contest, while hitting 28 three-pointers. It is Eveland's first postseason award.
The Tigers play in the semifinal round of the Big West Tournament on Friday, March 12 at 8:30 p.m.