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Fazekas first team ESPN All-American

DARRELL MOODY
Appeal Sports Writer

LAS CRUCES, N.M. – Nick Fazekas was named a first-team All-American by ESPN.

“It’s something which I worked for since the start of the season and even since last season,” Fazekas said. “It’s definitely something I set out to do as an individual, and it’s something that I accomplished.”

Fazekas was a third-team AP All-American last season, and is expected to get either first or second-team this season.

Fazekas was joined on the team by Player of the Year Kevin Durant of Texas, Texas A &M’s Acie Law, UCLA’s Aaron Aflalo and Wisconsin’s Rolando Tucker.

Besides winning WAC Player of the Year for three straight times, he is under consideration for the national Player of the Year as well as the Lowe’s Senior CLASS Award.

CHARTERING HOME

Seven of the eight teams that flew commercial to the tournament will be going home via a charter.

The only team that won’t fly charter is Hawai’i.

“New Mexico State brought the idea forward,” WAC commissioner Karl Benson said. “They were trying to make it convenient. In the past, we’ve had difficulty getting teams out in a timely manner.”

Benson said that Short’s Travel is handling the travel. They are the same people that the NCAA uses for the tournament. There are two 30-passenger planes being used.

“It’s a great service,” Benson said. “We get to fly out of here (Las Cruces) and don’t have to fly out of El Paso.”

BRACKETOLOGY REPORT

The latest Joe Lunardi Bracketology report has Nevada a No.4 seed and playing No. 13 Wright State in a first-round game in Spokane.

It would be part of the San Antonio Regional.

The Wolf Pack is still in ESPN’s Power 16 at No. 13.

RICHARD IS THROUGH

Janice Richard, who stepped away from the San Jose State women’s basketball program after discovering she had breast cancer, apparently won’t return to the program.

Lawrence Fan, the Spartans’ sports information director, said the university started actively searching for a new head coach.

San Jose State had a troubled season. After Richard’s illness, the Spartans hired an interim coach, who was later suspended after a women’s player accused a men’s player of sexual misconduct, according to published reports.

The school put men’s coach George Nessman in charge of both programs, and he appointed men’s assistant Derrick Allen to be the women’s head coach.

NO STRANGER TO UPSETS

For the second straight year, and the second time in tournament history, a seventh-seeded team beat a second-seeded team, and the New Mexico State women were part of both wins.

New Mexico State knocked off Fresno State, last year’s No. 2 seed, in the quarterfinals a year ago in Reno.

•Contact Darrell Moody at dmoody@nevadaappeal.com or881-1281