WICKLIFFE, Ohio (AStateRedWolves.com) – Arkansas State's Sarah Lokker
took home the National Tenpin Coaches Association Division I Player of
the Year award Wednesday night at the annual NCAA Tournament Banquet.
Additionally, Lokker and Ashley Rucker were named NTCA First Team All-Americans, while Amanda Labossiere earned Honorable Mention All-American Honors. A-State women's bowling head coach Justin Kostick earned the NTCA Division I Coach of the Year award for the second time in his career.
Lokker set a school record with six all-tournament selections this season, including four MVP honors, also a school record. She is the first Arkansas State player to win the NTCA Player of the Year and also earned her first All-American First Team selection after being named to the All-American Third Team as a freshman and the All-American Second Team a season ago.
"Sarah's a tremendous player and I've always known she's had the potential to accomplish this," Kostick said. "I'm extremely proud of her and I think she was clearly the best player in the country this year."
Rucker registered four all-tournament honors this season and earned her second All-American selection of her career after earning All-American Third Team honors a season ago. She also stole the show as she presented the team's skit video and earned the most laughs for her performance during the video.
"I'm so proud of Ashley because she's such a hard worker," Kostick said. "She's gotten better every year she's been here and this year has been her best season. She's been vital to our success this season."
Labossiere claims her second All-American honor after being named to Second-Team All-American in 2012. She made one all-tournament team this season and has been named to the NCAA Tournament All-Tournament team in back-to-back seasons.
"Amanda is such a solid and steady player," Kostick added. "You can count on her and obviously she's been there before since she won a second-team award a couple of years ago. I'm very proud of her and she's very deserving."
Kostick claimed his second NTCA Coach of the Year award after leading the Red Wolves to a 91-29 record this season. The 91 wins are a school record for regular-season wins and tied the overall record for wins during a season. He also claimed the 2012 NTCA Coach of the Year award.
"Winning this award is great, but I don't win this award without great players," Kostick said. "We've got a great team and this award is more for them than it is for me, but I do it for the players and I'm honored to win this award for them."
Arkansas State begins its quest for a national championship Thursday when the seeding rounds get underway at 10:50 a.m. (CT) from Game of Wickliffe in Wickliffe, Ohio. Tomorrow's action can be seen on www.NCAA.com.