Rio's Smith earns MSC Player of the Week honor
Louisville, Ky. --- University of Rio Grande senior guard Jenna Smith is the Mid-South Conference Women's Basketball Player of the Week, conference officials announced on Monday.
The weekly conference award is the first of the season and of her MSC career.
Smith averaged 20.3 points, four rebounds and 2.3 assists during the week while leading the RedStorm to three wins. The Bellefontaine, Ohio native averaged 27.5 points en route to earning Most Valuable
Player honors at the Bevo Francis Tournament.
Smith opened the week with six points, five rebounds and four assists in Rio's 87-84 win over University of Northwestern Ohio. She hit the game-tying three-pointer to send it overtime. She then exploded for 33 points, including making seven three-pointers, in an 89-84 win over Point Park in the opening game of the Bevo Francis Tournament.
In the Point Park win, Smith became the 23rd player in Rio Grande women's basketball history to join the 1,000-point club.
Smith concluded the week with a 22-point performance in a 90-71 win over Daeman College.
For the week, Smith made 46.5 percent (20-of-43) of her shots, including 13-for-30 from beyond the three-point arc. She was a perfect 8-for-8 at the free throw line.
She is the first Rio player to win a player of the week honor since Brittany Walker was the American Mideast Conference Player of the Week, February 11-17, 2008.
"This is our second year in the Mid-South and this is our first (MSC Player of the Week award)," said Rio Grande head coach David Smalley. "All the weeks last year and leading up to this current time, we haven't had anybody and Jenna is just a phenomenal player and I think she's getting the attention of a lot of people."
"The stats she's putting up, her shooting percentage, just hit her 1,000th point, was the Bevo Francis MVP of a very, very solid tournament for us," Smalley added. "We're proud of Jen and we're happy for her because she deserves that. I think to have that honor, MSC Player of the Week, it's the tops of the top right now and hopefully she'll bring home several more of those as the season progresses."
Rio was 4-0 heading into Monday's night encounter with Wilberforce at the Newt Oliver Arena.