Pair of Rainbow Warriors basketball players earn Big West honors
The Big West Conference announced its men's basketball all-conference and specialty team selections as picked by the league coaches with a pair of Rainbow Warriors getting recognition.
IRVINE, Calif. —The Big West Conference announced its men's basketball all-conference and specialty team selections as picked by the league coaches with a pair of Rainbow Warriors getting recognition. Senior forward Jack Purchase was named to the all-conference second team, while sophomore guard Drew Buggs earned honorable mention.
Purchase was named to the all-conference team for the first time after being tabbed honorable mention as a sophomore and the Big West's Best Sixth Player as a junior. The native of Melbourne, Australia is averaging a team-best 11.5 ppg and 6.0 rpg and has established himself as one of the league top shooters. The 6-9 forward shot 50 percent from the field and 42 percent from three-point land, and ranked second in the league with 2.6 three-pointers per game. Earlier in the season, he became the school's all-time leader in three-pointers made (196).
Buggs, a 6-3 sophomore, earned conference recognition for the first time after serving as the team's indispensable floor general. Buggs leads the conference with 5.4 assists per game, including 5.8 apg in conference play. Buggs registered 12 assists in a win over UC Davis, the most by a Big West player this year and the most ever by a UH sophomore. The native of Long Beach, Calif., also had a 2.9 assist-to-turnover ratio, the second-best in league play.
CSUN's redshirt freshman Lamine Diane garnered top honors as the Big West Player of the Year, while also taking home the Freshman and Newcomer of the Year awards. UC Irvine's Russell Turner was named the Coach of the Year after leading the Anteaters to a 15-1 Big West record.
Up next for UH is the Big West Tournament, March 14-16, at the Honda Center in Anaheim, Calif. The No. 4 seed Rainbow Warriors will face No. 5 seed Long Beach State in a quarterfinal matchup on Thursday, March 8 at 8:30 p.m. PT/5:30 p.m. HT. The game will be broadcast on ESPN3.