Adversity brought out the best this year in Whitworth guard Kyle Roach.
Unselfish when his team needed it and demanding the ball when the script was flipped, Roach was rewarded Wednesday be being named the Most Valuable Player in the Northwest Conference.
“This year was definitely different,” said Roach, a junior from Marinwood, California, who averaged a team-high 18.6 points while playing almost 35 minutes a game.
It began last spring, when Roach – Whitworth’s only returning starter – was instrumental in helping the coaches meld 10 new players with the returnees.
“Kyle’s leadership stood out from the moment these guys arrived on campus,” Pirates coach Matt Logie said.
That was evident early in the season, after the Pirates lost point guard Jordan Lester to injury.
“You could see the fire light up in Kyle’s eyes,” Logie said.
Roach also averaged 5.1 rebounds and led the Pirates with 3.8 assists per game.
Earlier this month, Roach became the 28th player in school history to surpass 1,000 career points. He has scored 1,085.
Whitworth forward Jared Christy, who was second-team All-NWC last year at Pacific Lutheran, repeated the honor this year for his new school. Christy’s 9.0 rebounding average is second in the conference.
Guards Ben College and Garrett Hull were named honorable mention.
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