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Grow and Gillespie named All-MIAC; Hanson and Kalland also honored

February 28, 2017 at 8:57 pm
(L to R) Kevin Grow, Freddie Gillespie, Kent Hanson, and Guy Kalland
(L to R) Kevin Grow, Freddie Gillespie, Kent Hanson, and Guy Kalland

MIAC Press Release

NORTHFIELD, Minn. – Carleton College forwards Kevin Grow (Jr./Circle Pines, Minn./Centennial), Freddie Gillespie (So./Saint Paul, Minn./East Ridge), and Kent Hanson (Fy./Saint Paul, Minn./Saint Paul Academy) collected a half-dozen awards as the MIAC men’s basketball coaches handed out their postseason honors on Tuesday.

Grow is one of six players selected to the 2016-17 All-MIAC First Team and was joined on the five-player All-Defensive Team by Gillespie, who was also tabbed to the All-MIAC Second Team. Hanson not only is one of five players on the All-Rookie Team but was also selected for the MIAC’s Sixth Man-of-the-Year Award. Additionally, for the third time in his career Guy Kalland was voted by his peers as the MIAC Coach-of-the-Year.

Unlike in years past, the MIAC coaches elected to break up their all-conference squads into a first, second, and third team for men’s basketball. Grow averaged 14.4 points, 9.6 rebounds, 1.8 assists, and 1.7 blocks. He led the MIAC and ranked third in the West Region with 10 double-doubles during the regular season. He paced the conference and was fourth in the region at 9.6 rebounds while ranking second in the MIAC and seventh in the West Region for blocked shots. Despite regular double teams, Grow still finished 11th in the MIAC in scoring.

Grow is the 16th Knight overall—and the first since Tom Sawatzke in 2012 and 2013—to be named All-MIAC in consecutive seasons. Grow is one of just eight Division III players—and the only one from the West Region—to average at least 14.0 points, 9.0 rebounds, 1.5 blocks, and 1.5 assists during the regular season.

Gillespie played only 16 total minutes during his rookie campaign in 2015-16 but burst onto the scene in 2016-17. He ends up as one of only three underclassmen named to either the All-MIAC First, Second, or Third Team. During the regular season, Gillespie averaged 10.3 points and 8.2 rebounds while leading the MIAC and the West Region with 2.56 blocks per game, a figure that ranked 15th in NCAA Division III. His rebounding total was second to Grow among MIAC players and slotted Gillespie ninth in the region.

Opponents that were able to penetrate the perimeter of Carleton’s staunch defense still had to contend with the Knights “Twin Towers” of Grow and Gillespie, who were both voted to the MIAC’s five-player All-Defensive team. Over the last 16 seasons, Carleton has seen players recognized for their defensive work a total of 15 occasions, but this is the first time that two Knights have been honored at the same time. Grow was also an All-Defensive Team pick for 2015-16, becoming the fifth Knight to earn multiple defensive awards.

Gillespie finished the year with 69 blocks, the second-highest recorded single-season total in team history and the most in the MIAC since 2009-10. He blocked multiple shots in 21 of his 27 games this season, including six rejections on two occasions. Grow, meanwhile, is the Knights’ leader in career blocked shots, closing his junior year with 157 rejections to tie for 18th among active Division III players.

Hanson’s season got off to slow start due to a wrist injury that limited his playing time the first month-plus of the season. Once healthy, he became a key cog for the Knights and finished second on the team in scoring at 12.1 points per game. He reached double figures in scoring only once in his first 10 games but crossed that threshold in 13 of his final 14 games, averaging 15.8 points over that span. Hanson was third in the MIAC overall and sixth in the region with a .582 field-goal percentage. He was also fourth in the MIAC and 16th in the region with 1.73 steals per game.

With Grow and Gillespie ahead of him on the depth chart, Hanson started only one game on the year, yet he was an obvious choice for the All-Rookie team as Hanson was second among first-years in scoring; paced his classmates in field-goal percentage, steals, and rebounds (5.3); and ranked fifth among that group in assists (1.1 per game).

Hanson becomes the 16th Knight since 2000 to be named to the All-Rookie Team. He is also the third Carleton player to take home the Sixth Man-of-the-Year Award over the last seven seasons and the first MIAC rookie to do so since 1998-99. Among conference players to start five or fewer games in 2016-17, Hanson ranked first in rebounding and second in scoring.

Kalland took home his third career MIAC Coach-of-the-Year award, having also earned the honor in 2006 and 2011. After a 1-6 start to the conference slate, Kalland engineered a turnaround that returned the Knights to the postseason for the first time since 2012-13. Beginning with a 79-60 victory over Gustavus Adolphus on Jan. 14, Carleton ran off 13 consecutive victories to close the regular season, moving the Knights from 10th in the standings all the up to third place. The Knights added another triumph to the win streak with a 66-63 victory over Augsburg in the opening round of the MIAC Playoffs before the Knights’ longest win streak in more than a decade was eventually snapped in the MIAC Playoffs semifinal.

Carleton went 18-9 overall and 14-6 in conference action. In the middle of the win streak, Kalland notched his 450th career win, becoming only the fifth coach to collect that many victories at a MIAC school.

Defense was once again the hallmark of Kalland’s program as the Knights yielded a conference low 61.8 points during the regular season, the fourth-lowest figure in Division III. With Gillespie and Grow leading the way, Carleton ranked 12th among NCAA Division III squads in blocked shots (5.3) per game. Opponents shot only .399 against Carleton, as the Knight ranked first in the West Region and 21st in the nation.

As part of a conference-wide sportsmanship initiative, the conference announced the 11th annual All-MIAC Sportsmanship team for men's basketball. Members of the sportsmanship team are selected by their coaches and teammates as individuals who demonstrate ideals of positive sportsmanship both on and off the field of competition. Carleton’s representative on the squad was Peter Bakker-Arkema (Sr./Ann Arbor, Mich./Skyline), who appeared in all 27 games and ranked fourth among MIAC players with his 2.5 assist-to-turnover ratio.

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