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UConn women sweep the Big East's coach, player and freshman of the year awards

UConn guard Ashlynn Shade, left, looks for room to drive against South Carolina guard Te-Hina Paopao, right, during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game in Columbia, S.C., Sunday, Feb. 11, 2024. (AP Photo/Nell Redmond)

UNCASVILLE, Conn. (AP) — No. 9 UConn, which went undefeated in league play this season, also swept the conference's coach, player and freshman of the year awards, the Big East announced Thursday.

Paige Bueckers, who averaged 22 points and 4.3 assists as the Huskies went 18-0 in the Big East, was the player of the year for the second time. She also won the award as a freshman following the 2020-21 season.

Guard Ashlynn Shade, who stepped into a starting role as the Huskies dealt with five season-ending injuries, was the freshman of the year. She averaged 12.7 points and four rebounds in Big East play.

Their coach, Geno Auriemma, was selected as the Big East coach of the year for a 12th time after leading the program to a 26-5 record. The Huskies, who will play in the Big East tournament Saturday against the winner of an opening-round game between No. 8 seed Butler and No. 9 seed Providence, won their league games by an average of 31.1 points.

It's the sixth time the Huskies have won all three major awards in the same year.

Kelsey Ransom of Georgetown and Christina Dalce of Villanova were the Big East's co-defensive players of the year. Villanova's Lucy Olsen (23.3 points per game) was the league's most improved player. Georgetown's Brianna Scott was chosen as the league's top reserve and the Hoyas' Graceann Bennett earned the league's sportsmanship award.

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AP women’s college basketball: https://apnews.com/hub/ap-top-25-womens-college-basketball-poll and https://apnews.com/hub/womens-college-basketball