Staley honored for second straight year

PHILADELPHIA -- Temple's Candice Dupree was a double-winner in this week's Atlantic 10 awards, as league coaches voted the junior center the conference Player of the Year and Defensive Player of the Year.

Dupree led the conference in rebounds (9.2 rpg) and blocks (2.12 bpg), and was the league's fourth-leading scorer with 16.0 points per game. The Tampa, Fla., native tied as the league leader with 12 double-doubles on the season en route to scoring her 1,000th career point and earning three A-10 Player of the Week honors.

Dupree scored a career-high 31 points in her only national-television appearance of the regular season and is shooting an impressive 54.1 percent from the floor, which ranks third in the conference.

Dupree also earned Defensive Player of the Year honors and garnered First-Team All-Conference honors for the first time in her career. She leads the league in blocks (2.12 bpg) and leads her team in steals (2.3 spg) while helping Temple lead the Conference in scoring defense allowing just 54.6 points per game.

Dupree's coach, Dawn Staley was named A-10 coach of the year for the second season in a row. A 1992 graduate of Virginia, Staley boasts a five-year career coaching record of 98-50 (.662). She has led the Owls to their first-ever A-10 tournament titles (2002, 2004) and just their third NCAA appearance since 1989.

The Owls have earned the East Division Championship three times under her tutelage, including this season, and enter the 2005 Atlantic 10 Championship as a top seed with a perfect 16-0 conference mark and a 23-3 overall record. The 23 wins are a program single-season record, and the Owls are currently riding a 20-game winning streak into the championship, which ranks second in NCAA Division I ranks.

A look at the A-10 awards:

Atlantic 10 regular-season awards
Player of Year: Candice Dupree, Temple
Rookie of Year: Kimberly Beck, George Washington
Defensive Player of Year: Candice Dupree, Temple
Most Improved Player Kamesha Hairston, Temple
Sixth Player of Year Michele Miller, Xavier
Student Athlete of the Year: Nicole Sinclair, Duquesne
Coach of Year: Dawn Staley, Temple

First Team
Tara Boothe, Xavier, Jr., F, 6-1
Candice Dupree, Temple, Jr., F/C, 6-2
Kate Flavin, Richmond, Sr., F, 6-1
Cynthia Jordan, Temple, Sr., G, 5-7
Anna Montanana, George Washington, Sr., F, 6-1

Second Team
Saona Chapman, Richmond, Jr., G, 5-8
Kamesha Hairston, Temple, So, F, 6-0
Crista Ricketts, La Salle, So, G/F, 6-1
Jessica Simmonds, George Washington, Sr., F/C, 6-2
Cara Wright, Dayton, Jr., F, 6-0

Rookie Team
Kimberly Beck, George Washington
Kate Mills, Massachusetts
Safi Mojidi, Rhode Island
Erica Pollock, Saint Joseph's
Pam Rosanio, Massachusetts

Defensive Team
Brooke Campbell, Massachusetts
Candice Dupree, Temple
Kate Flavin, Richmond
Kamesha Hairston, Temple
Tanya Rhodes, Rhode Island