Frost, Banks Earn All-Big Sky, Lusain Voted Outstanding Frosh
OGDEN, Utah – The Northern Arizona women's basketball team collected three honors on Monday with the announcement of the Big Sky Women's Basketball All-Conference teams and individual award winners as voted on by the league's head coaches. Senior Amanda Frost was voted as a member of the All-Big Sky First Team while junior Erikka Banks was named Honorable Mention. Freshman Brittani Lusain earned the conference's Outstanding Freshman award.
Frost capped off her career with one of the most prolific seasons in program history to earn her first career all-conference honor. She led the conference in scoring at 22.5 points per game while notching more 20-point games (19) and 30-point games (6) than any player in the Big Sky. Frost also ranked second in the conference in steals (2.5 per game), third in free throw percentage (.867) and fifth in three-point percentage (.376). Among the numerous highlights of her senior season, the Riverside, Calif. native set single-season school records for points scored, scoring average, field goals made, three-pointers per game and free throw percentage. Her 652 points scored ranks fifth all-time in Big Sky Conference history and her 22.5 point average is third. On her Senior Night, Frost became the 14th player in school history to join the 1,000 point club.
"Amanda rewrote the record books during her time at NAU and this year particularly was a season for the ages," said head coach Sue Darling. "Amanda has a slight build but is a giant on the court. Obviously Amanda was a prolific scorer in the league but she was also top-10 in assists. Amanda was absolutely the hardest worker on our team and it's nice to see all her hard work pay off with this prestigious honor."
In her first season as a full-time starter, Banks averaged 13.5 points per game, second on the team behind Frost, and a team-best 7.7 rebounds per game. Banks ranked 11th in the conference in scoring and finished the season third in rebounding. She also led the Big Sky in field goal percentage at .590, which is a new NAU season record, and she shot 63.6 percent from the field in league play. After shooting 65.2 percent from the free throw line during her first two seasons, Banks improved dramatically to 81.6 percent during her junior year, tied for seventh-best in the Big Sky, while making 129 free throws, second-most in school history. The Fresno, Calif. product tallied six games of at least 20 points, two games of at least 30 points and led the team with six double-doubles.
"Erikka is our silent assassin," Darling said. "She isn't flashy but she gets results every time she steps on the floor. While Erikka scores and rebounds with the best in the league, her greatest assets may be her intelligence and craftiness on defense."
Lusain made an instant impact in her first season and stuffed the stat sheet whether she was in the starting lineup or coming off the bench. The freshman from San Diego, Calif. became the sixth player in school history to earn the conference's top freshman award. She led all Big Sky freshmen in scoring (13.0 per game – 13th overall), rebounding (6.5 – ninth), assists (4.9 – second) and steals (1.9 – seventh). In terms of assists per game, Lusain ranks fourth among all freshmen in the country and she finished the season with 21 double-digit scoring games, second on the team behind Frost and 15 games with at least five assists while posting five double-doubles, only behind Banks on the team.
"Brittani had a phenomenal freshman campaign," Darling said. "It speaks volumes that out of all the freshmen in the league, the Big Sky coaches voted Brittani as the most outstanding. Brittani had a great impact on our team via scoring, rebounding, assists and steals while also drawing the toughest defensive assignment night in and night out. She will have a strong presence in the Big Sky for years to come."
For the first time since 2008, the Lumberjacks had multiple players on the all-conference teams while Lusain is NAU's first Outstanding Freshman since Amy Patton won it in 2010.