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Amherst College > Athletics > Men's Basketball > Zieja Named Co-N.E. Player of the Year
   
Steve Zieja '03
Zieja led the Jeffs to four straight NCAA Tournaments, capped by a trip to the NCAA Elite Eight in 2002-03.

Zieja Named Co-Division III New England College Player of the Year by New England Basketball Hall of Fame

August 22, 2003

AMHERST, MA - Capping a storied career in which he shattered the college’s all-time scoring record and led the Jeffs to four straight NCAA Tournament berths, a trip to the NCAA Elite Eight (2002-03) and consecutive NESCAC Championships (in 2000-01 and 2001-02), recently graduated Amherst College power forward Steve Zieja (Hadley, MA) was named the Co-Division III New England College Player of the Year by the New England Basketball Hall of Fame on Friday.

Zieja shares the award with Clark University’s Sean Fleming. They will be honored on Friday, September 19, as part of the New England Basketball Hall of Fame Dinner/Induction Ceremony at the Ryan Center on the campus of the University of Rhode Island. Amherst head coach Dave Hixon and his father, former Andover High School boys coach Will Hixon, will also be honored as part of the 2003 New England Basketball Hall of Fame induction class.

Zieja’s most recent award adds to an already impressive list of postseason accolades, which includes being named Northeast Region Player of the Year and a First-Team All-American by the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC). Zieja was also voted ECAC Player of the Year, D3hoops.com Honorable Mention All-America, NESCAC Player of the Year, First-Team All-NESCAC, NESCAC All-Academic, First-Team Verizon Academic All-District and First-Team D3hoops.com All-Northeast Region. He was one of ten finalists for the Jostens Trophy (National Player of the Year), and graduated as Amherst’s all-time leading scorer with 1,708 points.

Zieja was recently awarded the college’s prestigious Hitchcock Fellowship, and will spend the next year as an assistant coach at Amherst.


STEVE ZIEJA 1999-2003 Career Highlights

    MISCELLANEOUS
  • Two-year captain.
  • Leading scorer in Amherst history with 1,708 points.
  • Also Amherst’s career leader in free throws made (382).
  • Along with classmates Pat Fitzsimons and Ryan Faulkner, led the Jeffs to a school-record 87 wins over four seasons, back-to-back NESCAC Championships (in 2001 and 2002) and four straight NCAA Tournament berths, including a trip to the NCAA Elite Eight in 2003.


  • SENIOR YEAR (2002-03)
  • Led Amherst to a school record 24 wins, a fourth straight NCAA Tournament berth and its first trip to the NCAA Elite Eight since 1994.
  • Named Honorable Mention Preseason All-America by Street & Smith's College Basketball 2002-03.
  • D3Hoops.com Second-Team Preseason All-America.
  • First-Team All-NESCAC.
  • NESCAC Player of the Year.
  • One of ten national finalists for the Jostens Trophy, awarded annually to the outstanding men’s and women’s basketball players in NCAA Division III.
  • First-Team Verizon Academic All-District (the only NESCAC player named Academic All-District).
  • Finalist for Academic All-America consideration.
  • NESCAC All-Academic.
  • First-Team D3hoops.com All-Northeast region.
  • NABC Northeast Region Player of the Year.
  • First-Team NABC All-Northeast Region.
  • First-Team NABC All-America.
  • ECAC Player of the Year.
  • First-Team All-ECAC.
  • D3hoops.com Honorable Mention All-America.
  • Co-Division III New England College Player of the Year (Selected by the New England Basketball Hall of Fame).
  • Second in the NESCAC in free throw percentage (.811), fourth in scoring (17.1 ppg), eighth in field goal percentage (.512) and 17th in rebounding (5.9 rpg).


  • JUNIOR YEAR (2001-02)
  • First-Team All-NESCAC.
  • First-Team D3Hoops.com All-Northeast.
  • Second-Team Verizon Academic-All District (the only NESCAC player named Academic All-District).
  • First-Team All-ECAC.
  • First-Team NABC All-District (Northeast Region).
  • Named the NESCAC Player of the Week on February 25 after averaging 25.0 points and 6.7 rebounds in a trio of NESCAC Tournament wins.
  • Fourth in the NESCAC in scoring (18.2 ppg), fifth in free-throw percentage (79.3%) and eighth in rebounding (7.1 rpg).
  • Earned all-tournament honors at the Ken Wright '52 Memorial Invitational, hosted by Amherst.


  • SOPHOMORE YEAR (2000-01)
  • Second-Team All-NESCAC.
  • Fifth in the NESCAC in scoring (17.8 ppg), fourth in rebounding (8.6 rpg) and sixth in free throw percentage (.787%).
  • Tabbed NESCAC Player of the Week on Mar. 5, after averaging 17.5 points and 8.9 rebounds in a pair of NCAA Tournament games.


  • FRESHMAN YEAR (1999-00)
  • Averaged 7.8 points, 4.7 rebounds and 17.4 minutes in 24 games as a freshman.


  • STEVE ZIEJA CAREER STATS