University of Tennessee freshman forward Angie Bjorklund was named the 2008 Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Year in an announcement made by the SEC on Mar. 4, 2008. Junior Candace Parker, the leading candidate for all of the 2008 national player of the year awards, was beat out by LSU's Sylvia Fowles for SEC Player of the Year honors. Last season, Parker was the 2007 SEC Player of the Year and in 2006 was the SEC Rookie of the Year. She was a unanimous selection to the 2008 All-SEC First Team - the third time she has earned that distinction. Joining Parker on the 2008 All-SEC Coaches First Team was senior Alexis Hornbuckle who earned First Team honors last year, Second Team honors in 2006 and was named to the All-SEC Rookie Team in 2005. Senior Shannon Bobbitt was voted to the All-SEC Second Team by the league coaches.
The multi-dimensional Parker, a junior from Naperville, Ill., plays all five positions and averaged 20.8 ppg, 8.6 rpg, 2.7 apg, 2.3 bpg and 2.37 spg for the number three-ranked Lady Vols. Recently, she broke the 19-year old school record for career blocked shots - she now has 250 in three seasons.
Bjorklund, a freshman forward from Spokane Valley, Wash., is the sixth Lady Vol all-time to be named as the SEC Rookie of the Year. She joins UT standouts Bridgette Gordon (1986), Dena Head (1989), Chamique Holdsclaw (1996), Tamika Catchings (1998) and Candace Parker (2006) as Tennessee players to earn the distinction from the SEC. As a rookie this year, Bjorklund was named as the SEC Freshman of the Week five times tying her with teammate Candace Parker (2006) for the most all-time SEC Freshman of the Week awards. With four treys vs. the Florida Gators last week, she moved into sixth place in the Lady Vol record books for single-season three-pointers made (62).
Hornbuckle, a Charleston, W. Va., native, was also named as a member of the All-SEC Defensive team. Hornbuckle has a team leading 2.68 steals per game and recently broke the 19-year old school record for career steals - she now has 344 in four seasons.
Lady Vols have earned 69 spots on the All-SEC first and second teams since 1982, including 49 first-team accolades.
First Team All-SEC
Sylvia Fowles, LSU*, Candace Parker, Tennessee*, , Tasha Humphrey, Georgia, Christina Wirth, Vanderbilt, DeWanna Bonner, Auburn, Quianna Chaney, LSU, Alexis Hornbuckle, Tennessee, Marshae Dotson, Florida
Second Team All-SEC
Samantha Mahoney, Kentucky, Shannon Bobbitt, Tennessee, Sarah Elliott, Kentucky, Shawn Goff, Ole Miss, Ashley Houts, Georgia, Jennifer Risper, Vanderbilt, Erica White, LSU and Demetress Adams, South Carolina.
Angie Bjorklund, Tennessee*, Vicki Dunlap, Kentucky, Angela Puleo, Georgia, Amber Smith, Kentucky, Alli Smalley, Auburn, Jence Rhoads, Vanderbilt, Mary Kathryn Govero, Mississippi State, Hannah Tuomi, Vanderbilt.
All-SEC Defensive Team
Sylvia Fowles, LSU*, Alexis Hornbuckle, Tennessee, Brittney Vaughn, Arkansas, Jennifer Risper, Vanderbilt, Demetress Adams, South Carolina
Coach of the Year
Van Chancellor, LSU
Player of the Year
Sylvia Fowles, LSU
Freshman of the Year
Angie Bjorklund, Tennessee
Defensive Player of the Year
Sylvia Fowles, LSU
6th Woman of the Year
Jessica Mooney, Vanderbilt and Allison Hightower, LSU
Scholar-Athlete of the Year
Chelsea Chowning, Kentucky