The Gophers women’s basketball team had a top-four finish in the Big Ten this season because of their stars: Kenisha Bell, Carlie Wagner and Destiny Pitts.
For their accomplishments, Bell and Wagner were named All-Big Ten first team Monday by both media and coaches, and Pitts was selected as the Big Ten Freshman of the Year.
Bell, a 5-foot-9 junior, earned an all-conference defensive team honor as well. The former Bloomington Kennedy star leads the Gophers in points (19.6), assists (6.6) and steals (2.8). Her 80 steals also led the Big Ten.
Wagner, a senior guard from New Richland, Minn., averaged 18.3 points and 4.7 rebounds per game. Pitts, a Detroit native, averaged 13.1 points and 7.4 rebounds, and she was named all-conference second team.
The Gophers (22-7, 11-5) are the fourth seed in the Big Ten tournament and play Friday after a double bye in Indianapolis.
The media selected Iowa’s Megan Gustafson as Player of the Year, while the coaches went with Ohio State’s Kelsey Mitchell. Gustafson, a 6-3 forward, is the nation’s leading scorer at 25.3 points per game, is second in field-goal percentage (66.7) and double-doubles (26) and fifth in rebounds (12.8). Mitchell was named Big Ten Player of the Year for the third time in four years after the 5-8 guard averaged 24.4 points and 4.1 assists for the Big Ten champion Buckeyes.
Amy Williams earned Coach of the Year honors in her second year at Nebraska after coming over from South Dakota. The Cornhuskers (20-9, 11-5) earned the league’s No. 3 seed.