SDM earn 4 spots on DAC All Conference list
By Brad Blume
Sports Information Director
South Dakota School of Mines
RAPID CITY ---- The Dakota Athletic Conference released the All Conference selections for men’s and women’s basketball Monday with the South Dakota School of Mines athletes earning four spots, including a first team honor, two third team awards and a newcomer of the year honor.
Senior Melanie Vedvei, an industrial engineering major, was named to the DAC first team for the third consecutive season.
“Melanie was the top vote getter in the conference,” said Hardrocker women’s head coach Barb Felderman.
The 5-foot-7-inch guard from Lake Preston injured her knee 19 games into the 2007-08 season. She still finished the year with 399 points, 121 total rebounds, 110 assists and 87 steals. Vedvei broke the NAIA career steals record with 420 in her four-year tenure, as well as finished second all time in SD School of Mines history with 1,972 points. She also owns individual school records in: career steals at Mines (420), steals in a season (124), steals in a game (11), career free throws made (555), free throws made in a season (199) and free throws made in a game (17).
“Anyone that has seen her play knows that there really is only one word to describe her and that’s phenomenal,” Felderman said.
Vedvei earned the DAC MVP award the previous two years and was also a NAIA first team selection last year and a second team honoree for the 2005-06 campaign.
Senior Jennie Malone earned third team honors for the second consecutive year. Malone ended the year with 267 points, 107 assists and 75 steals.
“Jennie was always at a disadvantage because she came into the season late (each year because of volleyball),” Felderman said. “She always had some catching up to do, but it was easy to notice her arrival each year.”
Malone is an Industrial Engineering major from Rapid City, S.D., that finished her Hardrocker career with 1,003 points on the season and No. 21 all time for the SD Mines women’s basketball program. “She probably missed the equivalent of an entire season so for Jennie to get over 1,000 points is wonderful,” Felderman added.
Freshman Jerika Ihnen was award the DAC Freshman of the Year honor. Ihnen is a 5-11 forward from Tea, S.D., majoring in Interdisciplinary Sciences. Ihnen finished her first season as a Hardrocker with 279 points, 31 steals and 16 blocked shots.
“Jerika doesn’t know how good she can be but obviously the conference coaches do,” Felderman said.
On the men’s side, freshman A.J. Trennepohl received accolades from the DAC as a third team selection. The shooting guard from Lubbock, Texas, who redshirted last season, finished the year with 348 points.
“We had about five guys on our team that averaged in double figures this year that could have gotten on the list,” said Hardrocker men’s head coach Jason Henry. AJ did very well during the DAC games. He led in scoring and he was very tough to handle for other teams in conference play.”
At the time of the selection process, Trennepohl led the Hardrockers in scoring, free throws made, three-pointer made, field goal percentage, free throw percentage, was second in minutes played and was fourth in rebounding. He averaged 13.5 points a game, had an 89 percentage for free throws, 54 percentage for field goals and a 49 percentage for three-point goals.
Trennepohl established himself as a perimeter shooter. Against Dana College on Nov.24, the 6-2 Mining Engineering major cashed in on 7-7 from behind the arc and finished the contest with a 10-10 showing from the field giving him 100 shooting percent.
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