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College Basketball: Cheeks has outstanding week with NAIA, Conference honors

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Posted: Thursday, January 12, 2017 1:15 pm

WALESKA, Ga. — Reinhardt freshman and former Sonoraville High standout Rebecca Cheeks has been named NAIA Division II Women’s Basketball Player of the Week on the heels of winning her third Appalachian Athletic Conference Player of the Week honor this season. The award was announced by the NAIA national office in Kansas City, Mo., Tuesday afternoon.

A Ranger, Ga., native, Cheeks has helped lead Reinhardt to its best start in program history. Last week, the freshman averaged 27 points and 13.5 rebounds per game in helping the Lady Eagles to a pair of wins. Against Columbia, Cheeks netted 29 points and grabbed 19 rebounds, both season-bests, as the Lady Eagles held on to win, 66-62. Two days later at Union, Cheeks scored 25 points and added eight rebounds in Reinhardt’s 79-63 victory. The wins pushed Reinhardt’s winning streak to nine games, which was then stretched to 10 with yesterday’s 60-48 win at Truett McConnell.

Cheeks now leads the AAC in scoring in conference games, averaging 20.5 points per game. She’s second in rebounding in conference games at 10.1 per contest. The freshman ranks in the top 25 in six different categories, including sixth in total rebounds (179), 10th in rebounds per game (9.94) and 21st in points per game (17.33).

With the award, Cheeks becomes the first Reinhardt women’s basketball player to be named NAIA Player of the Week in the school’s Division II era. She is also the first national player of the week for Reinhardt since Ryan Thompson of the RU football team won the NAIA Offensive Player of the Week honor Oct. 13, 2015.

With a conference record of 9-1, the No. 22-ranked Lady Eagles are in first place in the AAC standings with a two-game lead over Milligan and Tennessee Wesleyan.

In other recent college basketball news:

Cheeks earns third AAC

Player of the Week award

WALESKA, Ga. — Reinhardt’s Rebecca Cheeks has been named Appalachian Athletic Conference Women’s Basketball Player of the Week for the third time this season following her stellar performances last week against conference foes Columbia and Union. The award was announced by the conference office Monday afternoon.

A Ranger, Ga., native, Cheeks averaged 27.0 points and 13.5 rebounds per game in RU’s two wins last week. Against Columbia, the freshman scored 29 points and had 19 rebounds, both season-highs, in a 66-62 victory. Two nights later, Cheeks scored 25 points and grabbed eight rebounds as the Lady Eagles defeated Union 79-63 in a match-up of two teams receiving votes in the NAIA Top 25 Coaches’ Poll.

Cheeks currently leads Reinhardt in points per game (17.06) and rebounds per game (9.71). She leads the AAC in points per game in conference games with 20.33, and her rebounds per game mark of 9.67 in conference games ranks her third behind teammate Bria White and Milligan’s Sarah Robinson, who each have 9.78.

The award marks the third time this season that Cheeks has received the AAC honor. She previously took home the honor Dec. 12 and Dec. 19.

The Lady Eagles are currently 16-1 and riding a program-best nine game winning streak.