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Thursday, March 30, 2017

Four UB women’s basketball players earn Academic All-MAC Honors

All WNY News     Thursday, March 30, 2017    

STAFF REPORTS
news@allwnynews.com



BUFFALO -- A program record four University at Buffalo women's basketball student-athletes were named to the Academic All-MAC squads, as announced by the conference office on Thursday afternoon. A total of 52 Mid-American Conference student-athletes earned the recognition on Thursday.

Juniors Katherine Ups, Liisa Ups and Mariah Suchan were all honored for the second straight season while sophomore Ayoleka Sodade earned the recognition for the first time in her UB career.

A biomedical sciences major with a 3.922 GPA, Katherine Ups earned Academic All-MAC honors for the second straight season. The junior closed out her successful campaign appearing in all 32 games while earning the start in 22. She was able to average 3.4 points, 3.2 rebounds and 1.7 assists while being a valuable glue player and leader for the Bulls all season long.

Liisa Ups, a biomedical sciences major with a 3.890 GPA, was named to the Academic All-MAC squad for the second straight season after appearing in 20 games as a junior. Ups turned into a bench player and vocal leader for the 22-win Bulls as she was able to average 1.0 points, 1.3 rebounds and 1.1 assists during her third season.

Suchan, a biomedical sciences major with a 3.643 GPA, just closed out her most successful season as a Bull during her junior campaign. The Witchita, KS native was able to average a career-best 4.3 points and 4.6 rebounds while appearing in all 32 games and making a career-best 22 starts at forward. The aggressive defender turned into one of the best post defenders in the conference and produced at a high rate during the MAC Tournament as she averaged 6.7 points and a team-best 7.7 rebounds.

An exercise science major with a 3.320 GPA, Sodade earned a spot on the Academic All-MAC team for the first time in her Buffalo career. As a sophomore, Sodade grew into her bench role as she appeared in 20 games and averaged 1.7 points and 1.4 rebounds. The high energy player was effective on the defensive end of the court as well as she averaged a career-best 7.2 minutes/game last season.

The Bulls just wrapped up their most successful season since joining the MAC in 1998-99 as they were able to produce a 22-10 overall record. UB has now produced back-to-back 20 wins seasons for the first time since joining the MAC.

Buffalo was dominant at home during the 2016-17 campaign as they notched a program division I record for home victories with 13. Under the tutelage of fifth-year head coach Felisha Legette-Jack, the Bulls have now collected at least 17 wins in four consecutive seasons for the first time in 20 years.

The Academic All-MAC honor is for student-athletes who have excelled in athletics and academics. To qualify, student-athletes must have at least a 3.20 cumulative GPA and have participated in at least 50 percent of the contests for that particular sport.

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