Nov. 18, 2013
WEST POINT, N.Y. – Army women’s basketball picked up where it left off last season, collecting a pair of weekly awards following its first set of games. Sophomore point guard Kelsey Minato was voted the Army Athletic Association Athlete of the Week while freshman forward/center Danielle Failor was tabbed the Patriot League Anaconda Sports Rookie of the Week. The Black Knights went 2-1 during their opening week of play, defeating opponents by an average of 15 points.
Minato, the reigning Patriot League Player and Rookie of the Year, is Army’s leading scorer this season. Through three games, the sophomore play caller is averaging 19.3 points per game which included a career-high 25 against Fairleigh Dickinson on Thursday night. During the game against the Knights, Minato matched the Army record for three-pointers in one game with six, going six-for-nine from beyond the arc and making 7-of-12 overall. The Huntington Beach, Calif., native followed that performance with a 21-point, four-assist showing against Weber State which included a 10-for-10 clip from the free-throw line.
Including her 12-point game in the season opener at St. Francis (N.Y.), Minato carries a Patriot League-best 19-game double-digit scoring streak into Wednesday night’s game against Manhattan. With 10 threes last week, she jumped to ninth all-time on Army’s career three-pointers list with 65 through her first 34 collegiate contests. Her .837 career free-throw percentage ranks atop the Army ledger.
Failor made an impact immediately, registering a double-double in her first collegiate contest with 10 points and 11 rebounds. She shot an efficient 4-of-7 from the field in her first game before going 5-for-10 in Game 2 against Fairleigh Dickinson en route to an 11-point showing. She averaged 10.5 points, 9.5 rebounds in two starts before coming off the bench against Weber State on Sunday, scoring three points and adding two assists for the second consecutive game.
Failor, out of Post Falls, Idaho, is the No. 2 freshman scorer in the Patriot League, while her 4.3 offensive rebounds per game rank third among all conference players.
Army had a virtual monopoly on the Patriot League Rookie of the Week citation in 2012-13 as Minato and Aimee Oertner snagged 11 of 16 certificates the Black Knights were eligible for. In addition, Minato and Anna Simmers combined for five Player of the Week awards, as Army set records for total weekly awards, claiming 16 of the possible 34. Minato’s eight Rookie of the Week honors set an Army record and tied the Patriot League standard.
The Black Knights will host Manhattan on Wednesday evening at 7 p.m., before wrapping up their four-game home stretch against Brown on Saturday at 1 p.m.