CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – UMBC women's basketball freshman forward Sara Tarbert (Delta, Pa./Kennard-Dale) and men's basketball freshman guard Rodney Elliott (Baltimore, Md./John Carroll) were nominated for the 2013-14 America East Basketball Fans' Choice Players of the Year, as announced by the league office on Wednesday.
A winner will be named for both men's and women's basketball. Voting for the 2014 America East Basketball Fans' Choice Players of the Year will go until Tuesday, March 4 at 3 p.m. and can be done on the America East Facebook Page. The winner will be announced that afternoon via release at AmericaEast.com.
Tarbert has paced the Retrievers' offense on the season, averaging a team-best 13.7 points per game, while also adding 6.9 rebounds and 2.1 assists. The rookie has led UMBC in scoring in 16 of its 27 games, including 21 double-digit scoring games. Tarbert leads all AEC freshmen in scoring and rebounding, ranking in the top-six in the league in both categories, while also tying for third in the conference in double-doubles on the season with five.
Tarbert, who is the fifth-highest UMBC scoring freshman in program history (369), has pulled in a program-record and league-best five America East Rookie of the Week honors. The freshman is currently in the midst of an 11-game double-digit scoring streak.
Rodney Elliott's five America East Rookie-of-the-Week honors to date have surpassed former record-holder Chauncey Gilliam, who earned the weekly award four times in the 2008-09 campaign. The Baltimore native is now sixth in the conference in scoring at 14.7 points per game and is now averaging 15.1 points per game (third) in America East contests. The point guard is fourth in the league in assists per game (3.6), seventh in assist-to-turnover ratio (1.0), and tenth in field goal percentage (44.7%) and steals per game (1.2).
Elliott just became UMBC's second Division I player ever to record 400 points, 100 rebounds and 100 assists in a season. He has scored 412 points, which is third all-time amongst all UMBC freshmen in single-season scoring with at least a pair of games left on the schedule.
He will likely by the first freshman to lead UMBC in scoring since Rich Giddens, who averaged 15.5 points per game (434 total points) in 1997-98.