CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Along with Art Parakhouski grabbing the fourth Big South Choice Hotels Player of the Week honor of his brief career, Radford’s Blake Smith repeated as The Crons Brand Freshman of the Week for games played Nov. 16-22, as announced by the league office this week.
Parakhouski, the league’s preseason player of the year, finished the two-game week averaging 27 points and 15.5 rebounds per outing. To go along with shooting better than 56 percent (23-41) from the floor, the 6-11 center pulled down 19 offensive rebounds and blocked seven shots.
Against Lynchburg College, Parakhouski charted 17 rebounds (12 offensive) and connected on 15-of-22 attempts from the floor en route to the second 30-point effort of his career. Four days later, Parakhouski had his 20th career double-double, and third straight to begin 2009-10 with 23 points and 14 rebounds at No. 8/9 Duke.
Through three contests, Parakhouski is ranked nationally in scoring (9th) and rebounding (3rd).
“Art has rebounded the ball very well so far this season and he is shooting a strong percentage from the field,” said Radford head coach Brad Greenberg. “He worked hard over the summer to be even stronger this season and it is paying off. He keeps getting better and better.”
For the week, Smith averaged 10.5 points, 4.5 rebounds, 3.0 assists, 2.0 steals and 1.0 blocks per contest, while shooting 50 percent (4-8) from behind the three-point arc.
In Radford’s 24-point win over Lynchburg, the two-time Big South Freshman of the Week recorded 10 points and dished out a season-high four assists. Smith backed his performance against the Hornets with 11 points, six rebounds, two assists and three of the Highlanders’ five 3-point field goals against the nationally-ranked Blue Devils.
“Blake has been versatile and effective so far this year. He is shooting a good percentage, helping out on the boards, taking care of the ball and making some instinctive defensive plays as well.”
Smith is the first Highlander since Amir Johnson to repeat as Big South Freshman of the Week.
Radford will enjoy an eight-day break before continuing its longest road trip (five games) of the 2009-10 season at Duquesne on Sunday afternoon.