Jan. 3, 2012
NEW ORLEANS - After helping the Green Wave claim their fourth consecutive Tulane/DoubleTree Classic title, Tulane women's basketball standouts Olivia Grayson and Danielle Blagg were named Conference USA Player and Freshman of the Week, respectively.
For the week, Grayson and Blagg combined to score 54 points and pull down 19 rebounds as Tulane defeated College of Charleston 57-42 on Wednesday before downing Hampton in the title game 66-53 on Thursday in Fogelman Arena. The honors are the second of each student-athletes' career after earning the distinctions back on Nov. 21.
A junior from Metairie, La., Grayson averaged 18.5 points, 5.0 rebounds, 5.0 assists and 3.0 steals in the games during the Tulane/DoubleTree Classic and was named the tournament's MVP. She shot 44.4 percent from the field (12-of-27) and 75.0 from the free throw line (12-of-16).
In the tournament-opening victory over College of Charleston, Grayson shared team-high scoring honors with Blagg at 11 points each while also contributing six rebounds, five assists and four steals. In Thursday's title game against Hampton, Grayson was even better with 26 points, five assists, four rebounds and a pair of steals. She was forced to watch most of the first half with foul trouble, and 24 of her 26 points came after halftime.
Grayson becomes the sixth Tulane student-athlete to earn C-USA Player of the Week honors twice in the season, joining Janell Burse (Jan. 3/Feb. 21, 2000), Grace Daley (Dec. 13/Dec. 20, 1999), Teana McKiver (Dec. 31 2001/Feb. 25, 2002), Gwen Slaughter (Dec. 16, 2002/Feb. 3, 2003) and Tiffany Aidoo (Jan. 3/Jan. 10, 2011).
Against College of Charleston, Blagg had 11 points and pulled down a team-leading seven rebounds. In that game, she hit 44.4 percent of her shots from the field (4-of-9) and had one assist in 21 minutes of work. In the title game against Hampton, she scored six points and had a pair of rebounds in 17 minutes off the bench.
Blagg is one of four Green Wave rookies to earn C-USA Freshman of the Week honors so far during the 2011-12 season and the only one to repeat to date. In addition to her weekly title on Nov. 21, Adesuwa Ebomwonyi did so on Nov. 28, Jamie Kaplan claimed the honor on Dec. 12, and Tiffany Dale followed suit on Dec. 23. With four different Freshmen of the Week, Tulane is the only school in league history to have more than two players earn the honor in a single season.
Grayson, Blagg and the Green Wave return to action on Thursday, Jan. 5, when they open the Conference USA portion of their schedule at Memphis. Tipoff for that game is scheduled for 7 p.m. From there, Tulane will play host to league foe UCF on Sunday, Jan. 8, at 2 p.m. in Fogelman Arena.
For tickets to that game and future Green Wave home events, contact the Tulane Athletics Ticket Office either in person, over the phone at 504-861-WAVE (9283) or via the Internet at www.TulaneGreenWave.com. The Ticket Office located on the first floor of the James W. Wilson, Jr. Center on Ben Weiner Drive, is open weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.