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Drammeh, Purchase receive Big West specialty awards

University of Hawai’i juniors Sheriff Drammeh and Jack Purchase received specialty award honors from the Big West Conference on Monday.

Drammeh, a 6-foot-3 guard from Stockholm, Sweden, earned the Best Hustle Player Award; Purchase, a 6-8 forward from Melbourne, Australia, earned the Big West Best Sixth Player Award.

Drammeh is averaging 10.8 points and 3.4 rebounds per game, but is best known for his defensive energy and penchant for drawing opponents into charging fouls.

Purchase is averaging 7.9 points, 5.0 rebounds and 2.1 assists per game, and leads the Rainbow Warriors with 50 3-pointers.

It is the first time that Hawai’i players have earned those respective specialty awards.

Senior Mike Thomas was listed on the Honorable Mention for the All-Big West Conference team.

Thomas, a 6-foot-7 forward from Woodland Hills, Calif., is leading the Warriors in scoring (13.0), rebounding (6.0) and field goal percentage (.563).

Six players were named to the all-conference first team, and five others on the second team. Thomas is one of 10 players on the Honorable Mention list.

Point guard Drew Buggs was considered a strong candidate for the Big West Conference Freshman of the Year award, but CSUN point guard Terrell Gomez was announced as the winner of that award.

Buggs, who is 6 feet 2 and from Long Beach, Calif., is averaging 8.1 points, 3.7 rebounds and 3.5 assists per game. He also leads the team with 42 steals, which is already a new freshman season record at UH. In the 16 Big West regular-season games, Buggs averaged 9.5 points, 4.1 rebounds and 3.8 assists per game.

Gomez, who is 5-8 and from Los Angeles, finished the season averaging 11.7 points, 3.6 assists and 2.4 rebounds per game. He ranked second in the Big West with 65 3-pointers, and first in 3-point percentage at .461. The Matadors finished last in the conference standings, and did not qualify for this week’s Big West Conference Tournament.

Regular-season champion UC Davis took the top honors, with point guard TJ Shorts II earning both Player of the Year and Newcomer of the Year, and Jim Les earning Coach of the Year.

All-Big West Conference
First Team
Name, School, Height, Year, Pos., Hometown

Kyle Allman Jr., Cal State Fullerton, 6-3, Jr., G, Brooklyn, N.Y.
Max Heidegger, UC Santa Barbara, 6-2, So., G, Malibu, Calif.
Leland King II, UC Santa Barbara, 6-7, Sr., F, Inglewood, Calif.
Gabe Levin, Long Beach State, 6-7, Sr., F, Oak Park, Ill.
Tommy Rutherford, UC Irvine, 6-8, So., F, El Cajon, Calif.
TJ Shorts II, UC Davis, 5-9, Jr., G, Tustin, Calif.

Second Team
Khalil Ahmad, Cal State Fullerton, 6-4, Jr., G, Corona, Calif.
Tavrion Dawson, CSUN, 6-8, Sr., F, Long Beach, Calif.
Evan Leonard, UC Irvine, 6-1, So., G, Cerritos, Calif.
Siler Schneider, UC Davis, 6-3, Jr., G, Lansing, Kan.
Gabe Vincent, UC Santa Barbara, 6-3, Sr., G, Stockton, Calif.

Honorable Mention
Deishaun Booker (Long Beach State), Donovan Fields (Cal Poly), Victor Joseph (Cal Poly), Alex Larsson (UC Riverside), Chima Moneke (UC Davis), Chance Murray (UC Riverside), Jackson Rowe (Cal State Fullerton), Mike Thomas (Hawai’i), Temidayo Yussuf (Long Beach State), Eyassu Worku (UC Irvine).

Player of the Year
TJ Shorts II, UC Davis

Newcomer of the Year
TJ Shorts II, UC Davis

Freshman of the Year
Terrell Gomez, CSUN

Coach of the Year
Jim Les, UC Davis

Best Defensive Player
Jonathan Galloway, UC Irvine

Best Hustle Player
Sheriff Drammeh, Hawai’i

Best Sixth Player
Jack Purchase, Hawai’i

6 Comments

  1. Hard luck for Mike T. I think he deserves at least second team, maybe even first team if he didn’t get hurt at the end and UH sinking to sixth place.

    Oh well, just have to go out and win the Big West tournament now!

  2. Congrats to Drammeh and Purchase, both well deserved. Overall, this was a big slap in the face from the conference. I’m not sure how a last place team in the conference can have someone on the all-conference second team and freshman of the year?? Too much focus on stats. Give me a break! We beat every single team in the conference, and Buggs played a huge role in that. So what if some kid can shoot high percentage 3’s if you’re still losing most games? Mike Thomas was a high performer when he wasn’t in foul trouble, that should have been enough for second team honors. Too much focus on stats.

    The boys need to come out w/a chip on their shoulders this week, starting on Thursday. Beat Irvine and whoever else stands in the way to our second NCAA appearance in 3 years. Let’s GO BOWS!!!

  3. Sarah Toeaina was on the 8th place team but had the stats to support being named to the All Big West 1st Team for a second consecutive time. The only other Wahine to do that were Judy Mosely, Nani Cockett and Raylene
    Howard, per McInnis.
    But the UH men won 2.7 more conference games than CSUN did.

  4. The shortest guy of all the Big West 1st, 2nd and HM team players was named player of the year, and his name is Shorts.
    Justin Bibbins, another short guy, 5-8, was named to the Pac-12 All-Conference 1st Team and Utah is seeded 3rd in the Pac-12 tourney. He is their leading scorer, has a good assist to turnover ratio and 85% FT Pct.

  5. ^^^ Very well deserved for Shorts. I figured UC Davis was done after Moneke got suspended but instead they won first place! They really showed that anything is possible in this league. Next is UH’s turn to pull some shockers at Big West tournament!

  6. Another former Big West player who transferred to Utah is Megan Huff ( transfer from the UH women’s team) and she was named to the Pac-12 Women’s All-Conference 1st team. That All- Conference 1st team has 15 players and no 2nd team.
    The Pac-12 Men’s All-Conference 1st team has 10 players and the 2nd team has 5.

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