W&M scorer Marcus Thornton named CAA-second team

W&M scorer Marcus Thornton named CAA-second team
March 8, 2013, 10:30 pm
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RICHMOND, Va. - For the fourth time since joining the Colonial Athletic Association, the William and Mary men's basketball team had two players named all-conference at the league's annual awards banquet on Friday night as sophomore Marcus Thornton and junior Tim Rusthoven were chosen among the top players in the CAA. Along with the two All-CAA honorees, the Tribe once again led the CAA in All-Academic Team selections with eight players earning the distinction along with three of the Tribe's five starters.

Thornton became only the second Tribe sophomore to earn All-CAA Second Team honors, while Rusthoven was named to the third team. It marked the first time since 2010 and joined 1998 and 2004 as years in which W&M had two All-CAA choices. For the second straight season and third in the last four years, W&M placed three of its five starters on the top two CAA All-Academic Teams. Rusthoven became the sixth Tribe player named to the CAA All-Academic First Team on two occasions, earning his second honor this season, while junior Kyle Gaillard, a finance major, joined him on the top squad.

Junior guard Brandon Britt was a CAA All-Academic Second Team honoree for the second straight season. W&M placed five players on the honorable mention CAA All-Academic Team, including seniors Doug Howard and Andrew Pavloff, who earned the accolade for the third straight season. Junior Fred Heldring was selected to the CAA All-Academic Team for the second straight season, while senior Brett Goodloe and sophomore Tom Schalk earned the honor for the first time in their careers. In total, eight of the 19 players honored as CAA All-Academic Team members were William and Mary student-athletes. Under head coach Tony Shaver, W&M produced 33 CAA All-Academic Team selections, the most in the CAA in 2004.

Thornton became just the fourth Tribe sophomore to receive All-CAA honors and just the second to earn Second-Team All-CAA honors, joining Thomas Roberts who earned the distinction in 1991. Thornton, who was a CAA All-Rookie Team selection in 2012, ranked second in the CAA in scoring at 18.6 points per game, registering double digits in all 29 games. A three-time CAA Player of the Week, he leads the CAA and ranks among the top 20 nationally in 3-pointers made and 3-point percentage. Thornton scored 20-plus points on 13 occasions, the second best total in the CAA, including a career-high 32 points on seven 3-pointers in the Tribe's 74-62 win at Old Dominion. He also leads W&M and ranks 13th in the CAA in assists at 2.8 per game.

Rusthoven received the first CAA honor of his career with a spot on the third team. He was one of only three players in the CAA to rank among the top 11 in the league in both scoring (14.4) and rebounding (7.2), joining CAA Player of the Year Jerrelle Benimon of Towson and First-Team All-CAA choice Keith Rendleman of UNCW. One of the most efficient players in the CAA, Rusthoven scored in double figures on 25 occasions in 2012-13, including five 20-plus point games, and added five double-doubles. He recorded a career-high 25 points at Northeastern on Jan. 23, while pulling down the most rebounds for a Tribe player since 1997 with 16 against Hofstra on Feb. 2.

After earning honorable mention CAA All-Academic team honors last season as a redshirt, Gaillard moved up to the first team this season. He finished the season averaging 8.7 points and 5.4 rebounds per game, while starting 28 of 29 games. He ranks 18th in the CAA in rebounding and earlier this season tied the W&M school record for shooting percentage in a game, going a perfect 7-of-7 from the floor at Richmond. Gaillard scored in double figures on 15 occasions, including a season-high 16 at Richmond, to go along with his first career double-double at Radford on 13 points and 10 rebounds.

Britt, a business major, garnered a spot on the All-Academic Team for the second straight season. The Tribe's third-leading scoring at 13.8 point per game, he ranks among the top 15 in the CAA in scoring (13th), field goal percentage (fifth at 49.1 percent) and 3-pointers made per game (15th at 1.3). Britt scored 20 or more points in a game on five occasions in 2012-13, including a career-high 26 in W&M's win over Howard. As of late, Britt has been on a tear, averaging nearly 16 points per game over the last seven contests, shooting 53 percent from the floor and 59.4 percent from 3-point range.

Howard and Pavloff both earned the All-Academic Team distinction for the third straight season. A former walk-on, Howard was awarded a scholarship prior to his senior campaign and was named a team captain. A double major in English and marketing, he made his second career start on Senior Night vs. James Madison and scored on a driving lay-up. Pavloff, a finance major, served as a team captain in 2013 as well. He appeared in eight games for the Tribe this season, including his first career start against James Madison on Senior Night.

Goodloe joined the W&M program for his senior campaign after spending the first three years of his career as a pitcher on the Tribe baseball team. A four-time W&M Provost Award winner, Goodloe will earn his degree in neuroscience. He scored a career-high five points in the W&M's win over Salisbury and started on Senior Night against James Madison.

Heldring was named to CAA All-Academic for the second straight season. A business major, he made 28 appearances off the bench, averaging a point and 1.6 rebounds per game in 10 minutes of action per contest. Heldring scored a season-high six points at High Point and pulled down four rebounds at both Delaware and Wake Forest. Schalk received the first CAA All-Academic honor of his career and is a two-time W&M Provost Award selection. He averaged a point and 1.3 rebounds per game, appearing in 22 games with one start.

The Tribe faces James Madison for a third time this season in the quarterfinals of the 2013 CAA Championship, presented by Jani-King, on Saturday, March 9. Game time is slated for 8:30 p.m. at the Richmond Coliseum. The contest will be televised on Comcast SportsNet Mid-Atlantic Plus,