For the second time in as many Mondays, Posh Alexander and Julian Champagnie have been recognized by the BIG EAST for their efforts in an undefeated week for the Red Storm. Alexander has been named the league’s Freshman of the Week for the second time in as many tries and the third time overall this season while Champagnie also earned an honor roll nod for the third time.
In a pair of Midwest road wins against DePaul and Marquette, Alexander averaged 15.0 points, 4.0 rebounds, 4.0 assists and 4.5 steals. The freshman guard shot 50.0 percent from the floor and 37.5 percent from beyond the arc. Champagnie, the BIG EAST’s leading scorer at 19.8 points per game, averaged 19.0 points and 6.5 rebounds this week, shooting 44.8 percent from the floor and a blistering 58.3 percent (7-of-12) from three-point range.
On Wednesday at Wintrust Arena, Alexander scored 15 points on 6-of-10 shooting while tallying six boards, five assists and three steals in a game that the Johnnies led comfortably for the final 35 minutes. Four days later in Milwaukee, Alexander posted another 15-point effort but stole the show with his defense, tallying a season-high six steals. His six thefts, including a midcourt pocket-pick of D.J. Carton with a minute and a half remaining in a one-point game, tied for the highest single-game total by a BIG EAST player this season.
Champagnie went 3-for-5 from three-point range in the Red Storm’s win over DePaul en route to a 16-point, six-rebound finish. A few days later against the Golden Eagles, Champagnie led all scorers with 22 points on 7-of-14 shooting, including a 4-for-7 showing from beyond the arc. The Bishop Loughlin product also grabbed seven boards.
On the season, Alexander ranks second on the team averaging 11.0 points per game while leading the team in assists (4.4 per game) and steals (2.7 per game). Alexander currently sits sixth in the league overall, first among freshmen, in assists while leading the BIG EAST and ranking seventh nationally in steals. Alexander is one of only two players to be named the BIG EAST Freshman of the Week more than once this season, as Marquette’s Dawson Garcia has also won the award on three separate occasions.
Following his 22-point effort on Sunday, Champagnie has now reached double figures in all 16 of his appearances this season with seven efforts of 20-plus points. Champagnie, who was also named the BIG EAST Player of the Week on Jan. 18 in addition to his three honor roll nods, is far from just a scorer, ranking among the top 10 in the conference in rebounds per game (6.8-9th), steals (1.5-5th), and blocked shots (1.2-8th). Champagnie’s 43.0 percent success rate from beyond the arc is also good enough for fifth in the BIG EAST and leads the league among players with at least 40 makes.
The Johnnies, who have won four straight and five of their last six, return to Queens on Wednesday to host No. 3/3 Villanova at Carnesecca Arena. Tip-off is set for 9 p.m. on CBS Sports Network.
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