MORGANTOWN — West Virginia's run to a co-championship in the Big 12 is reflected in the league's postseason awards announced Thursday.Mike Carey was named the league's coach of the year and four players earned top individual honors.Sophomore Bria Holmes and senior Asya Bussie were named to the 10-member all-conference first team. Holmes was a unanimous selection to the team.Bussie was also named to the league's all-defensive team, as was senior Jess Harlee. And senior Taylor Palmer earned the Big 12's sixth man award.
The Mountaineers (27-3, 16-2 Big 12) are ranked No. 7 in the nation and tied Baylor for the league's regular-season championship. In was the school's first conference title in any league in more than 20 years.West Virginia opens play in the Big 12 tournament Saturday in Oklahoma City as the No. 2 seed in the tournament. The Mountaineers have a first-round bye and play the winner of today's game between seventh-seed TCU and No. 10 seed Texas Tech.This is the third time Carey has been named a conference coach of the year. He earned the award twice in the Big East.
For Bussie, this is her third conference honor. She was on the All-Big East freshman team in 2010 and the All-Big East first team in 2012. She leads the nation with 133 career and consecutive starts (she redshirted last season with a knee injury) and is the Mountaineers' second-leading scorer at 13.2 points per game. She is the team's leading rebounder at 7.7 per game.Holmes, who was named to the Big 12 all-freshman team last season, is WVU's leading scorer at 14.8 points per game.Palmer came off the bench in 27 of 30 games this season to earn the sixth man award. She averaged 10.2 points per game and is second on the team in 3-pointers made (49). Despite having started just 25 games in her career, she recorded her 1,000th point this season.Harlee was named to the all-defensive team for the second consecutive season.Baylor senior guard Odyssey Sims, the nation's leading scorer at 29.6 points per game, has been picked as the Big 12 player of the year and the league's top defensive player.Baylor forward Nina Davis, the league leader with 9.0 rebounds per game and a .596 field goal percentage, is the Big 12's top freshman.West Virginia's quarterfinal tournament game in the Big 12 tournament is scheduled for 7 p.m. Saturday and will be televised on Root Sports.