| March 18, 2018

Men’s Basketball: Big Sky Honors announced

With the regular season of Big Sky basketball in the past, the Big Sky honors rolled out Monday with a few names of the Idaho men’s basketball team on the list.

Senior guard Victor Sanders and senior forward Brayon Blake were named All-Big Sky selections by the league’s coaches. Blake was named to first team and Sanders to second team.

In just his second year with the Idaho program, Blake made more than his fair share of contributions to the programs successful season. The second-year transfer averaged 16.6 points per game and a league-high 9.5 rebounds per game throughout the season. In Big Sky basketball, Blake upped his performance to 18.3 average points per game and an average 9.6 boards per game. Overall, he notched 11 double-doubles throughout the season, seven of which came in conference contests. Over 18 Big Sky matchups, Blake scored in double digits 16 times, including eight games with over 20 points.

Blake is no stranger to Big Sky accolades. He was named Big Sky Player of the Week January 22 following a two-game average of 24 points and 10.5 rebounds on a road trip to Southern Utah and Northern Arizona.

Sanders received his third consecutive All-Big Sky recognition. The three-year starter was named to second-team in the 2015-2016 season and first team for the 2016-2017 season.

The Portland native averaged 19 points per game, the fourth best average in the Big Sky. He continued to move up in the Idaho men’s basketball record books, currently sitting in seventh with 570 single-season points.

In his senior year, Sanders moved into second in program history scoring with a current 1,785 career points. His 270 3-point shots puts his name at second in the books for most 3-pointers in a career. Over the 18 conference games, Sanders notched double-digit games 18 times, including nine games with 20 points or more.

With the help of the two All-Big Sky athletes Idaho has completed their best season in recent history with 22 wins in the regular season for the first time since the 1992-1993 season.

The Vandals move into the Big Sky tournament in Reno at the No. 2 position, Idaho Head Coach Don Verlin’s best finish with the program.

Eastern Washington’s senior guard Bogdan Bliznyuk took home Big Sky Most Valuable Player award. Bliznyuk averaged 22. 2 points per game, 7.6 rebounds per game and 4.8 assists per game. The Ukraine native now sits at third on the Big Sky career scoring list with 2,060 points, just 2,102 away from Idaho’s Orlando Lightfoot’s record.

The rest of the individual winners include Northern Colorado’s senior guard Andre Spight took home Newcomer of the Year. Junior guard Michael Oguine of Montana was named Defensive Player of the Year.

Freshman of the Year went to Portland State’s freshman guard Holland Woods.

Idaho State’s sophomore guard Brandon Boyd took home honors for Top Reserve.

The Big Sky action continues for Idaho Thursday 5:35 p.m. against the winner of the game three Idaho State vs Southern Utah contest.

Meredith Spelbring can be reached at arg-sports@uidaho.edu

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