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Tuesday, March 8, 2005
Buffalo's Turner tabbed top frosh

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Ball State's Kate Endress and Bowling Green's Curt Miller have earned the Mid-American Conference's top honors for the 2004-05 women's basketball season, the league announced Tuesday at the conference's annual Tournament Banque

Endress was named the league's Player of the Year, while Miller has garnered the league's Coach of the Year award for the first time in his career. In addition, Buffalo's Heather Turner was tabbed MAC Freshman of the Year. The league's 13 head coaches and members of the MAC News Media Association conducted the voting.

The conference's other two specialty awards, the Defensive Player of the Year and the Sixth Man of the Year awards, are voted on by the league's head coaches. Kent State's Malika Willoughby took home defensive honors, Ohio's Simone Redd was the Sixth Man of the Year.

Endress is the third Cardinal to garner the league's top honor, joining Jenny Eckert (1990) and Tamara Bowie (2001 and 2003). The two-time first-team all-MAC selection averaged a league-high 18.2 points per game during the regular season and was also 13th in rebounds (6.5). The Evansville, Ind., native also tops the chart in 3-point field goal percentage and is second with 68 3-pointers.

Bowling Green's Miller earns his first Coach of the Year honor after directing the Falcons to their first divisional crown and the program's first MAC Championship since 1993-94. The fourth-year head coach guided BGSU to a 13-3 league mark and a 20-7 overall record during the regular season, giving the school back-to-back 20-win seasons for the first time since the 1992-93 and 93-94 campaigns. Picked to finish third in the league's preseason MAC News Media Association Poll, Bowling Green won the program's sixth MAC regular season title -- the second most in conference history.

A look at the top three finishers in each award category, with total points:

Player of the Year
Kate Endress, Ball State 25
Ryan Coleman, Eastern Michigan 20
Sikeetha Shepard-Hall, Marshall 5

Coach of the Year
Curt Miller, Bowling Green 39
Royce Chadwick, Marshall 14
Suzy Merchant, Eastern Michigan 4

Freshman of the Year
Heather Turner, Buffalo 26
Kate Achter, Bowling Green 20
Julie DeMuth, Ball State 7
Simone Redd, Ohio 7

Defensive Player of the Year
(voted on by the MAC head coaches)
Malika Willoughby, Kent State

Sixth Man of the Year
(voted on by the MAC head coaches)
Simone Redd, Ohio

A total of 61 ballots were received from members of the MAC News Media Association and the MAC's head coaches.