February 6, 2012

Ryan Lays Claim to POW Honors Again

After leading the Eagles to another perfect week in the Big Sky, senior captain earns third weekly honor of the season

For the third week in a row, a different Eastern Washington University women's basketball player has been tabbed as the Big Sky Conference Player of the Week. Senior Brianne Ryan was selected this week, alongside Montana State's Katie Bussey, as the league's Co-Players of the Week for games played Jan. 30 - Feb. 5.

Senior Chene Cooper was the Big Sky POW last week, while junior Carrie Ojeda received the honor on Jan. 23.

For Ryan, this is the third weekly honor of her senior campaign. She was recognized back in November as a Big Sky POW, and then earned a similar accolade just last week, as College Sports Madness named her the top player of the week in the Big Sky Conference.

With back-to-back 20+ scoring efforts, Ryan led the Eagles to an 84-58 win at home against Northern Arizona, followed by a 90-84 victory on the road against Sacramento State.

With their 9-2 league record, the Eagles became the first team in the Big Sky to clinch a bid to the 2012 conference championship, which will be held March 8-10 at the site of the regular-season champion.

With the win at Sac State, EWU also extended its undefeated Big Sky road record to 6-0, which ties the school record for most league road wins in a single season.

Ryan was instrumental in making all of that happen, as she averaged 27.5 points, 7.5 rebounds and 3.5 assists on the week.

Against NAU, she poured in 29 points on a 12-of-23 effort from the floor, with three 3-pointers. She also had six rebounds, four assists and two steals to propel EWU to its largest margin of victory in the Big Sky season.

On Saturday in front of a sold out crowd at The Nest in Sacramento, Calif., Ryan posted 26 points, which included a perfect 8-of-8 performance from the free-throw line. She hit 4-of-4 free throws in the final 16 seconds, which enabled EWU to pull away after having just a slim two-point edge with less than a minute to play. She was also just one rebound shy of a double-double in the big win at Sac, as she finished with nine boards to go along with three assists and one steal.

Ryan has scored in double figures in every game of the 2011-12 campaign and has now had 11 20+ performances – the most by any player in the league. She leads the Big Sky in scoring, while ranking 22nd nationally with an average of 19.3 points per game.

With at least six games left in her senior season, Ryan already ranks among the top four scorers in EWU history with 1,336 career tallies. She is in the Top 10 in games played (113), field goals made (500) and 3-point field goals made (129).

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