BOISE – Big Sky Conference regular-season champion Eastern Washington earned a heap of honors Tuesday.
Senior forward Mason Peatling was named conference MVP, Shantay Legans was named coach of the year, and Jacob Davison (second team) and Kim Aiken Jr. (third team) earned All-Big Sky distinction.
Peatling, who averaged 18.5 points, 10.4 rebounds and 3.8 assists in Big Sky play, is EWU’s third conference MVP in four years. Peatling also added 17 blocks.
The 6-foot-8 Australian joins former Eagles MVPs Bogdan Bliznyuk (2018), Jacob Wiley (2017), Rodney Stuckey (2006) and Alvin Snow (2004).
Peatling, a second-team Big Sky selection in 2019 and honorable mention in 2018, has recorded a double-double in 11 of his past 15 games.
“Those who have followed the team know just how much he’s improved year after year, which is a product of his tireless work ethic,” Legans said of Peatling.
Legans, who led EWU (23-8) to an outright conference title in his third season, is the fourth coach in program history to win coach of the year honors. He follows Jim Hayford (2015), Ray Giacoletti (2004) and Steve Aggers (2000, 1998).
The former California and Fresno State starting point guard (1999-2004) helped the Eagles advance to the Big Sky Tournament title game in his first two seasons. The No. 1- seeded Eagles look to make another deep run beginning Thursday at CenturyLink Arena.
Legans, 38, has posted a 41-17 conference record in three seasons, the best three-year stretch in program history.
“Make no mistake, this is a team award,” Legans said. “Coaches are only as good as their players and staff, and I have an amazing group of guys who not only make my job easy, but a blast.”
Davison, a third-team All-Big Sky selection last year in an injury-shortened season, continued his scoring tear for EWU, leading the team at 18.4 ppg. The junior guard is shooting 43.9% from the field.
Aiken, a 6-6 sophomore, has been a double-double machine for EWU this season, averaging 13.4 points, nine rebounds, 1.7 steals and a 1.1 blocks. He was named to the All-Big Sky Tournament team last year.
Peatling, Davison and Aiken have accounted for 61% of EWU’s scoring.
The Eagles open Big Sky Tournament play on Thursday in the quarterfinals, facing the winner of Wednesday’s first-round game between eighth-seeded Weber State (12-19) and No. 9 Sacramento State (15-14).
Idaho senior guard and former Clarkston star Trevon Allen (21.1 ppg) was Idaho’s lone all-conference selection, earning a second-team nod.
The 10th-seeded Vandals (8-23) open tournament play Wednesday at 11 a.m. against seventh-seeded Southern Utah (16-15).
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