PHILADELPHIA – USciences Head Women's Basketball Coach Jackie Hartzell has been named the Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) East Region Coach of the Year, therefore qualifying as one of the eight finalist for National Coach of the Year, while senior Alex Thomas and sophomore Irisa Ye were two of the 40 student-athletes honored as WBCA All-America on Monday night.
University of the Sciences was one of just four programs in all of Division II to have multiple WBCA All-Americans.
A year after joining former Holy Family coach Mike McLaughlin as the only coach in the history of the league to win Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (CACC) Coach of the Year multiple times, Hartzell joined McLaughlin as the only coach to win it at least three times in 2018-19.
She led USciences (30-3, 18-1 CACC) to its second consecutive 30-win season, with the Devils setting or tying program records for overall victories, regular season wins (26), CACC victories for a 19-game league schedule, national ranking (No. 4), regional ranking (No. 1) and win streak (18).
The season culminated with University of the Sciences hosting the NCAA East Regional, the first home NCAA postseason contest in the history of the University.
The Devils went on to win an NCAA Tournament game for the third year in a row, the only team in the East Region to do so.
Ye's honor adds to a growing list of accolades she has earned this season, which includes First Team All-CACC and D2CCA All-Region, CACC Championship All-Tournament Team, NCAA East Regional All-Tournament Team, USBWA Division II National Player of the Week, CACC Student-Athlete of the Month, CoSIDA Academic All-District Team and CACC Player of the Week.
Ye finished this season atop the CACC with a 55.6 field goal percentage, which currently ranks 21st nationally and puts her sixth in the program's single-season history.
She was also second in the league in both points per game (17.0) and 3-point percentage (43.7), the latter of which ranks seventh in the program's single-season annals, and fourth with an 83.1 free throw percentage.
Ye's 561 points this year were the second-most in a single-season in USciences history, breaking the program's NCAA Era record, while her 195 field goals and 133 free throws ranked fifth and seventh, respectively.
After becoming just the second Devil in program history to earn All-CACC accolades in all four of her years, Thomas also earned All-Region honors and now ends her career as an All-American.
She ended the season atop the CACC with an 84.6 free throw percentage, and ends her career as the Division II active leader in free throw percentage at 88.7.
Thomas' 68 3-pointers this season ranked fifth in the conference and third in USciences' single-season history. She was also 10th in the CACC in both 3-pointers per game (2.1) and points per game (14.0), as well as 12th in 3-point percentage (35.4)
Thomas led University of the Sciences with 5.9 rebounds and 32.4 minutes per contest.