Omaha, Neb. — Capping a special week the saw redshirt-senior Jaylyn Agnew set the Creighton record for points in a single-game at 43 on Sunday, the forward earned the highest honor on Wednesday, March 4th as she was named the BIG EAST Player of the Year.
Agnew claimed the BIG EAST scoring title with the highest average (23.1) since Louisville’s Angel McCoughtry averaged 26.6 points per game in 2008-09. She most recently matched McCoughtry’s BIG EAST single-game scoring record with 43 points in Sunday’s regular-season finale against Georgetown, snapping a Creighton program record (42) which had been on the books since 1982. Agnew also broke the BIG EAST single-season record for free-throw percentage, going 43-of-43 (1.000) from the charity stripe over 14 league contests. She is the national leader in free-throw percentage as well, making nearly 95 percent of her attempts. A six-time BIG EAST Player of the Week in 2019-20, Agnew enters the postseason averaging 20.8 points per game overall with 13 contests of at least 20-point games to her credit, including a league-best four 30-point showings – most in the BIG EAST since 2014-15. She was one of two unanimous All-BIG EAST First Team selections along with DePaul’s Chante Stonewall. Agnew becomes the second Bluejay to earn top honors after Marissa Janning was tabbed BIG EAST Player of the Year in 2013-14.
Creighton junior Temi Carda was also recognized on Wednesday, earning All-BIG EAST Honorable Mention. Carda enters the BIG EAST Tournament averaging 13.1 ppg as well as 4.4 rpg. She has led Creighton in scoring seven times, reaching double-figures in 21 contests.
The remaining major award including Marquette’s Megan Duffy claiming BIG EAST Coach of the Year, Villanova redshirt-freshman Maddy Siegrist collecting a unanimous selection as BIG EAST Freshman of the Year. Individual awards and All-BIG EAST Teams were selected by a vote of the league’s head coaches who were not allowed to vote for themselves or their own players. Additional major award winners include: DePaul’s Chante Stonewall as BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year; DePaul’s Sonya Morris as the Most Improved Player; St. John’s Leilani Correa as the Sixth-Woman Award recipient; and DePaul’s Kelly Campbell as the Sportsmanship Award winner. Five-member All-BIG EAST First Team, Second Team, Honorable Mention and All-Freshman Teams were also selected.
Predicted to finish ninth in the BIG EAST Preseason Coaches’ Poll, first-year Marquette head coach Megan Duffy inherited a team which graduated five 1,000-point scorers and graduated over 75 percent of its scoring. The Golden Eagles took everyone by surprise after finishing non-conference play 9-2 with its lone setbacks being single-digit losses to Mississippi State and Northwestern, which currently rank ninth and 11th, respectively, in the Associated Press Poll. Marquette went on to finish alone in second place in the BIG EAST standings with a 13-5 record which included a season-finale win over No. 16 DePaul – the first top-25 win of the Duffy era. MU finished BIG EAST play with the second-best defensive scoring average (62.0) and was No. 1 in rebounding (margin and averages), field goal percentage (.450) and blocks (4.2).
Siegrist has been a standout from the start, leading the BIG EAST in scoring for much of the year before Agnew’s late push. She enters the postseason averaging 19.1 points per game overall to rank second in the conference, after finishing fifth in BIG EAST play with a 17.0 clip while leading the league with 9.3 rebounds per game. The two-time national freshman of the week was a 10-time BIG EAST Freshman of the Week to match the conference record originally set by Connecticut’s Maya Moore in 2007-08. Siegrist has a BIG EAST-best 11 double-doubles and a league-high 14 20-point games. Among her many records broken this year were the Villanova freshman scoring record, both single-season points (553) and single-game (41), and BIG EAST freshman field goals attempted (290). Siegrist is just the second BIG EAST Freshman of the Year out of Villanova along with the legendary Shelly Pennefather (1983-84). She was also named to the All-BIG EAST First Team and was a unanimous BIG EAST All-Freshman Team pick.