Four Mountain Hawks Pick Up Patriot League Postseason Awards

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  • Complete Patriot League Release

BETHLEHEM, Pa. – Following a strong regular season, four members of the Lehigh men’s basketball team were recognized with postseason awards, as announced by the Patriot League on Monday. Senior Nic Lynch and junior Evan Taylor were named third team All-League while Keith Higgins Jr. and Tyler Whitney-Sidney were named to the All-Rookie team. The honors mark the first in each of their respective careers.

The honors mark the first postseason awards for all four Mountain Hawks. It’s the first time in three seasons that multiple Lehigh players were named All-League, while it’s the first time since 2013-14 that multiple Mountain Hawks were named to the All-Rookie team (Tim Kempton and Austin Price).

Lynch has been playing his best as the season’s progressed, averaging 16.9 points and 7.1 rebounds over his last eight games. In the last week of the regular season, the Seattle native scored a career-high 30 points on Senior Night vs. American before posting his third double-double of the season at Lafayette Saturday. Overall, Lynch is averaging 10.0 points and 4.6 rebounds, 12.5 points and 5.8 boards in Patriot League play. Eight games ago, Lynch knocked down a pair of huge 3-pointers in the final five minutes of Lehigh’s improbable comeback win over Navy. He finished with 18 points in that game, and went on to score 24 points the following contest vs. Boston University. In league games, Lynch is second in the Patriot League in 3-point percentage, knocking down 25-of-50 (50.0 percent) from behind the arc.

Taylor is Lehigh’s leading scorer overall (13.1) and in Patriot League play (13.6). He’s the only player in the top 11 in the league in scoring, rebounding (5.4) and blocks (1.1). In league games, Taylor is fifth in 3-point percentage (45.2 percent, 33-of-73). Taylor has six games with 20+ points in the Patriot League (after none in his career entering league play). He began with a then-career high 25 points at American. He also had 21 vs Bucknell, 20 against Loyola, 21 vs Navy, 26 against Boston University and 23 at Lafayette. Taylor had the game-winning steal and layup in the final seconds of the big comeback over Navy, while Saturday, he finished 10-of-11 from the floor at Lafayette. It marked the highest shooting percentage for a Lehigh player with at least 10 makes in Brett Reed’s 15 seasons as Mountain Hawks’ head coach.

Higgins and Whitney-Sidney are Lehigh’s first members of the All-Rookie Team since current junior Reed Fenton in 2019-10.

Higgins came on strong in Patriot League play, averaging 11.5 points and 3.1 rebounds in league games, while dishing a team-high 54 assists. Overall, he’s averaging 8.7 points while posting a team-leading 66 assists. In league games, Higgins is ninth in 3-point percentage, knocking down 39.3 percent (35-of-89). Higgins began league play with five straight double-figure point games, which extended to nine of the first 10. In that run was a career-high 26 points at Bucknell in a game that saw him score 13 points in the game’s first 5:24 and 16 in the first 6:51. Higgins was named Patriot League Rookie of the Week in three consecutive weeks in January, becoming the first player across the league to win Rookie of the Week three consecutive weeks since Joe Pridgen of Holy Cross in 2019-20. Higgins became the first Mountain Hawk to win the award three straight weeks since Tim Kempton in 2013-14.

Like Higgins, Whitney-Sidney played his best in Patriot League play. In league games, Whitney-Sidney averaged 7.9 points and 3.1 boards with 39 assists to increase his season totals to 5.9, 2.4 and 47, respectively. Whitney-Sidney was named Patriot League Rookie of the Week in late January following a career-high 19 points vs. Army, followed by 11 points at Holy Cross. He was also named Rookie of the Week earlier Monday for his efforts vs. American and at Lafayette. Whitney-Sidney also scored 11 points at Bucknell on Jan. 13 while scoring 12 in last Wednesday’s Senior Night win over American.

The Mountain Hawks will host Army West Point Thursday night in a Patriot League Quarterfinal at Stabler Arena with game time set for 7 pm Tickets are on sale now at LehighTickets.com and can also be purchased at 610-7LU-GAME during business hours.

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2021-22 PenFed Credit Union Patriot League Men’s Basketball Major Awards and All-League Teams

Player of the Year – Sukhmail Mathon, Boston University, Gr., F
Defensive Player of the Year – Josh Caldwell, Army West Point, Sr., G
Rookie of the Year – Kyrell Luc, Holy Cross, Fr., G
Coach of the Year—Ed DeChellis, Navy

First-Team All-Patriot League

Sukhmail Mathon, Boston University, Gr., F
Javante McCoy, Boston University, Gr., G
Nelly Cummings, Colgate, Sr., G
Tucker Richardson, Colgate, Sr., G
Cam Spencer, Loyola Maryland, Jr., G

Second-Team All-Patriot League

Jalen Rucker, Army West Point, So., G
Andrew Funk, Bucknell, Sr., G
Gerrale Gates, Holy Cross, Sr., F
Neal Quinn, Lafayette, Jr., C
John Carter Jr., Navy, Sr., G

Third-Team All-Patriot League

Stacy Beckton Jr., American, Sr., G
Walter Whyte, Boston University, Sr., F
Keegan Records, Colgate, Jr., F
Nic Lynch, Lehigh, Sr., C
Evan Taylor, Lehigh, Jr., G

Patriot League All-Defensive Team

Josh Caldwell, Army West Point, Sr., G
Sukhmail Mathon, Boston University, Gr., F
Tucker Richardson, Colgate, Sr., G
Richard Njoku, Navy, Sr., C
Greg Summers, Navy, Sr., G

Patriot League All Rookie Team

Elijah Stephens, American, Fr., G
Kyrell Luc, Holy Cross, Fr., G
CJ Fulton, Lafayette, Fr., G
Keith Higgins Jr., Lehigh, Fr., G
Tyler Whitney-Sidney, Lehigh, Fr., G

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