Epps, O'Neill Earn AP All-SEC Honors
LEXINGTON, Ky. – University of Kentucky women’s basketball players Makayla Epps and Jennifer O’Neill were honored by The Associated Press on Tuesday afternoon as Epps was named to the All-SEC First Team, while O’Neill was Honorable Mention. Epps becomes the first UK player to be named to the first team by the AP since A’dia Mathies in 2013.
Epps, a sophomore from Lebanon, Ky., assumed the starting point guard role midway through the season after junior Janee Thompson (Chicago) suffered a season-ending leg injury at South Carolina on Jan. 11. In her 15 games as the floor general, Epps has averaged a team-high 16.5 points per game to go along with 4.5 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game. She is also shooting .447 percent from the field, including a team-best .359 from beyond the arc during that stretch. Overall this season, her 14.5 points per game leads the team and ranks fourth in the SEC. The Nancy Lieberman Award watch list member, also was a First-Team All-SEC selection by the coaches this season.
O’Neill, a senior from the Bronx, N.Y., was named Honorable Mention All-SEC by the AP for the second year in a row. The SEC Sixth Woman of the Year is second on the team in scoring with 14.4 points per game which ranks ninth in the SEC. She has scored in double figures 27 times in 31 games this season, including eight in a row. She has hit a team-leading 51 3-pointers and is in position to end her career as one of the most prolific 3-point shooters in school history. In 131 career games, O’Neill ranks second on UK’s career 3-point field goals made list with 194 and 10th on the 3-point field goal percentage list, netting .348 percent (194-of-558).
The Wildcats begin NCAA Tournament play as a No. 2 seed Friday, March 20 at approximately 2:30 p.m. ET on ESPN2 and UK Radio Network. UK will face off against Ohio Valley Conference Tournament champions and No. 15 seed Tennessee State in Memorial Coliseum. Tickets are on sale now at the UK Ticket Office, and through ukhoopstix.com.
Additional information on the tournament, including game times and online ticket links, can be found at ukathletics.com
First Team All-SEC
- Tia Faleru, Mississippi
- Tiffany Mitchell, South Carolina
- Makayla Epps, Kentucky
- A'ja Wilson, South Carolina
- Courtney Walker, Texas A&M
Second Team All-SEC
- Isabelle Harrison, Tennessee
- Victoria Vivians, Mississippi State
- Danielle Ballard, LSU
- Cierra Burdick, Tennessee
- Alaina Coates, South Carolina
- Jessica Jackson, Arkansas
- Aleighsa Welch, South Carolina
- Jordan Frericks, Missouri
- Jennifer O'Neill, Kentucky
- Courtney Williams, Texas A&M
- Player of the Year: Tiffany Mitchell, South Carolina
- Coach of the Year: Vic Schaefer, Mississippi State
- Freshman of the Year: A'ja Wilson, South Carolina