MARSHFIELD, Mass. – Three members of the Mitchell College men's basketball team were honored by the New England Collegiate Conference on Tuesday afternoon as the league announced its annual awards.
Senior center Domenico Santiago was named NECC Player of the Year and earned one of five spots on the all-conference first team. He becomes just the second Mitchell player to win the conference's top honor, joining two-time winner Joshua Ford (2013, 2014).
Senior guard Steffen Brunson was an all-conference selection for the first time in his career, earning one of five spots on the second team. Junior guard Matt Finke was also named to the all-sportsmanship team. All awards were determined by a vote of the conference's head coaches.
Santiago, who earned all-conference honors for the third straight season, is a repeat first-team pick. The NECC Rookie of the Year in 2016, he also becomes just the third player in conference history to claim both rookie and player of the year accolades in a career (joining Ford and Becker's Terrance Favors).
Santiago averaged a double-double in league play during the regular season, recording 16.1 points and an NECC-best 12.2 rebounds per game. His overall average of 12.7 rebounds per game ranks fifth in NCAA Division III, and he is one of only two active Division III players with over 1,000 career rebounds. His 15 double-doubles also led the conference.
Brunson started all 25 games and averaged a career-high 16.8 points per contest during the regular season. His 120 assists led the Mariners and ranked second in the NECC. He also ranked among the conference leaders in field goals (154), free throws (79), free throw percentage (.806), steals (36) and points (419).
Finke started all 25 games and averaged a career-best 8.6 points per game during the regular season. As one of the top long-range shooters in the NECC, his 50 three-pointers led the Mariners. He also ranked sixth in the league in three-point field goal percentage (.417).
Mitchell (16-9 overall, 10-6 NECC) is the fourth seed in the 2019 NECC Championship and will host fifth-seeded Southern Vermont College in the first round on Tuesday, February 19 at 8 p.m.