Ohio Wesleyan University junior Nate Axelrod (Dublin/Coffman) and head coach Mike DeWitt received special awards as part of the All-North Coast Athletic Conference men’s basketball teams, it was announced Wednesday.
Axelrod, a point guard, was named NCAC Offensive Player of the Year and was a first-team All-NCAC selection.
DeWitt was named NCAC Coach of the Year.
Senior post Ben Simpson (Lake Bluff, Ill./Lake Forest) was a first-team All-NCAC selection and junior guard Seth Clark (Lewis Center/Olentangy) was a second-team All-NCAC pick.
Axelrod ranks fourth in the NCAC in scoring and leads the league in assists with averages of 17.6 points and 4.7 assists per game. He leads the NCAC in assist/turnover ratio (2.4:1) and ranks fourth in 3-point field goals (2.0/game), ninth in free throw percentage (.767), 10th in steals (1.2/game), and 15th in field goal percentage (.459). Axelrod is the first Ohio Wesleyan men’s basketball player to repeat as NCAC Player of the Year since 1987, when Scott Tedder won the second of his 2 straight NCAC Player of the Year citations.
Axelrod was selected as the conference’s Player of the Year in 2016 and was named NCAC Newcomer of the Year in 2015. He was a first-team All-NCAC selection for the third straight season.
Simpson ranks sixth in the NCAC in scoring and third in rebounding with averages of 16.9 points and 9.3 rebounds per game. He ranks fifth in steals (1.4/game), sixth in field goal percentage (.522) and blocked shots (0.9/game), and 12th in assists (2.6/game) and free throw percentage (.746). He was a first-team All-NCAC selection in 2016 and a second-team choice in 2015.
Clark ranks ninth in the NCAC in scoring with an average of 14.8 points per game. He ranks third in 3-point field goals (2.4/game), sixth in steals (1.4/game), eighth in free throw percentage (.776), and is tied for 16th in rebounding (4.8/game). Clark was a first-team All-NCAC pick in 2016.
DeWitt was named NCAC Coach of the Year for the fourth time. He previously was selected during the 2005-06, 2010-11, and 2014-15 seasons.
Ohio Wesleyan finished the season with a 21-7 record. The Bishops won the NCAC championship for the third consecutive season and advanced to the championship game of the NCAC tournament.
OWU Sports Information contributed to this report.
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