JMU’s Kirby Burkholder, Kenny Brooks claim state honors

jmu logoJMU senior guard Kirby Burkhoder (Bridgewater, Va./Turner Ashby) was named the Richmond Times-Dispatch State Player of the Year on Wednesday, March 26, to highlight six honors collected by the Dukes from the state capital’s paper.

Coach Kenny Brooks took home Coach of the Year honors to join Burkholder in a JMU sweep of the major honors. Junior forward Toia Giggetts (Norfolk, Va./Lake Taylor) and sophomore guard Precious Hall (Tallahassee, Fla./Maclay School) earned Second Team All-State accolades while redshirt senior forward Nikki Newman (Harrisonburg, Va./Turner Ashby) was an Honorable Mention.

Burkholder made the Times-Dispatch All-State team for the second year in a row, after averaging 18. Points and 8.7 rebounds in 35 games played. She was named the Colonial Athletic Association Player of the Year and led the Dukes to a 29-6 record and a berth in the NCAA Tournament. Madison notched its first NCAA win since 1991 behind Burkholder’s 28 points and 18 rebounds when it beat Gonzaga last Sunday.

Brooks adds Richmond Times-Dispatch State Coach of the Year honors to his CAA Coach of the Year accolade. He led his team to the postseason for the ninth straight time after winning his third league title.

Joining Burkholder on the First Team was VCU’s Robyn Parks, Old Dominion’s Shae Kelley, George Mason’s Taylor Brown and Hampton’s Alyssa Bennett. Hall and Giggetts shared Second Team accolades with Hampton’s Malia Tate-DeFreitas, Virginia Tech’s Uju Ugoka and Liberty’s Ashley Rininger.

The 2014 women’s all-state team is selected by Times-Dispatch staff writer Vic Dorr.

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