On the eve of the Ontario Colleges Athletic Association (OCAA) men's basketball championship, one Durham Lord managed to reel in some hardware early.
Eric Smith, of Ajax, was named the OCAA 2010-2011 player of the year. Smith was the OCAA East region scoring champion, averaging 21.6 points per game. The third-year forward was also the only OCAA player to collect more than 200 rebounds, finishing with 206 on the year. This made Smith the only player in the OCAA to average a double-double as well.
Smith, along with Njuguna Waiganjo of the Algonquin Thunder, were named as Canadian Colleges Athletic Association (CCAA) all-Canadians, the only players from the OCAA to earn the honour.
Other award winners included: Sault Cougars forward Randy Frimpong was named OCAA West rookie of the year after averaging 17 points a game and recording a team-high 17 blocks. His Eastern counterpart was Derrek Mooney of Algonquin, who won the award after averaging 8 points and swiping 12 steals.
Landry Ndayitwyeko of the Algonquin Thunder and Kern Lewis of the Humber Hawks were crowned defensive player of the year for both the East and West regions, respectively.
Trevor Costello, head coach of the 19-1 Algonquin Thunder, won OCAA East coach of the year honours. After guiding his team to nearly undefeated season and spending several weeks ranked first nationally, Costello is also a nominee for the CCAA coach of the year award.
Humber Hawks head coach Shawn Collins lead his squad to a 17-1 finish and earned himself OCAA West coach of the year honours. The Hawks won their division, outscoring their opponents by 314 points.
Also named were the OCAA East and West all-star teams.
For the East, Smith, Waiganjo, Fleming's Maxim Clarkson, Seneca's Vadim Halimov and St. Lawrence's Mathieu Riendeau were announced as first team all-stars.
For the West, Lambton's Rob Pierce, Algoma's Dele Oworu, Ahumber's Michael Acheampong, Mohawk's Aminu Bello and Sheridan's Khalid Abdel-Gabar all made the all-star cut.