Andrew Olson '08
Junior Andrew Olson was named the NESCAC Player of the Year for 2006-07.

Olson Named '06-'07 NESCAC Player of the Year; Wheeler Grabs First-Team All-Conference Plaudits

By Alex Kantor

February 28, 2007

AMHERST, MA – Amherst College junior point guard Andrew Olson (San Diego, CA) added another line to his impressive resume for the 2006-07 season, as he was named the New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) Men’s Basketball Player of the Year this afternoon. Olson was also named to the NESCAC All-Conference First-Team, alongside teammate Dan Wheeler (Bloomington, MN).

Olson has been recognized on the national level for his outstanding play this season, and is one of only two Division III players to be including in the field of 17 finalists for the 2007 Bob Cousy Award. The award is given annually to the best collegiate point guard in the country across all three NCAA divisions. Olson currently sits tied for fourth in the online portion of the vote, trailing only three Division I players.

This marks the third time Olson has been named one of the year-end award winners for the conference, as the honor follows his 2005 Rookie of the Year campaign, and his Second-Team All-Conference selection last season.

Olson was the third leading scorer for Amherst this season, racking up 10.4 points-per-game, while dishing out 7.4 assists a night to lead the conference. His assist-per-game mark is good enough for fifth in the national rankings, while his 2.81 assist-to-turnover ratio is a NESCAC-best.

Joining Olson on the First-Team is the senior quad-captain Wheeler, who moves up from last year’s Second-Team nod. Wheeler leads the NCAA Tournament-bound Lord Jeffs in scoring with 13.8 points-per-game, and is third on the team in rebounding (3.8 rpg). Through 27 games, Wheeler has maintained a 50.2% shooting percentage from the field, while hitting on 42% of his three-point attempts.

Wheeler scored a career-best 28 points against Wesleyan in his final regular season home game at Amherst to finish the night with exactly 1,000 career points, and has led the deep Amherst team in scoring on 10 occasions. Wheeler is also a national finalist for the Josten’s Trophy, which recognizes the most-outstanding Division III player in the country.

The two superstars will return to the court this Saturday, March 3 at 7 p.m. to face the winner of the Kings (PA)/Widener game to be played Thursday evening. Amherst received a first-round bye in the NCAA Tournament and will host games at LeFrak Gymnasium through the Elite 8 round should they continue to advance.

2006-07 NESCAC MEN'S BASKETBALL ALL-CONFERENCE

Andrew Olson '08
Senior quad-captain Dan Wheeler was selected for the 2006-07 NESCAC All-Conference First-Team.

First Team
G Nick Farrell Colby Sr. Aspen, Colo.
G Andrew Olson ^ Amherst Jr. San Diego, Calif.
G Zak Ray ^ Bates Sr. Bangor, Maine
F Rob Stockwell ^ Bates Sr. Temple, N.H.
F Dan Wheeler ^ Amherst Sr. Bloomington, Minn.

Second Team

G Kino Clarke Trinity Sr. Brooklyn, N.Y.
G Pat Martin Trinity Sr. Springfield, Mass.
G Chris Shalvoy Williams Jr. Rochester, N.Y.
C Russ Martin Trinity Jr. E. Longmeadow, Mass.
F Jake Weitzen Tufts Jr. New York, N.Y.
* - 2005-06 All-Conference First Team
^ - 2005-06 All-Conference Second Team

Coach of the Year:
Dave Paulsen, Williams
Player of the Year: Andrew Olson, Amherst
Defensive Player of the Year: Zak Ray, Bates
Rookie of the Year: Jon Pierce, Tufts