March 7, 2011 7:34:00 AM
JACKSON -- The recipients of the Howell and Gillom trophies for the best men''s and women''s college basketball players in the state of Mississippi will be announced today at a luncheon beginning at 11:15 a.m. at the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame.
Five of the six finalists are first-time honorees. University of Mississippi senior guard Chris Warren the only returning finalist.
Mississippi State junior guard Dee Bost is the only non-senior among the three men''s finalists.
Southern Mississippi senior Gary Flowers is the other men''s finalist.
Bost has started all 16 games he has played in for MSU (17-13). He is second on the team in scoring (15.3 points per game) and leads the team with 95 assists.
Warren leads the Rebels (19-12) in scoring (18.9 ppg.), assists 119, 3-pointers (83) and free-throw percentage (93.5 percent).
Flowers paces the Golden Eagles (21-9) in scoring (19 ppg.), rebounding (7.8), and blocked shots (44).
MSU senior guard Mary Kathryn Govero, Ole Miss senior guard Kayla Melson, and Delta State junior Veronica Walker are the women''s finalists.
Govero and Melson were named earlier this week second-team All-Southeastern Conference performers.
Govero was second on the Lady Bulldogs (13-17) in scoring (12.7 ppg.) and steals (46). She also averaged 4.1 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game.
Melson, who missed six games with a concussion, led the Rebels (10-19) in scoring (15.1 ppg.). She also averaged 5.3 rebounds and had 95 assists and 36 steals.
Walker leads the Lady Statesmen in scoring (18.4 ppg.), rebounding (9.8 rpg.), and blocked shots (63). She will lead Delta State (26-3) against North Alabama in the South Regional of the Division II tournament on Friday in Russellville, Ark.
On the men''s side, Ole Miss'' Reginald Buckner and Zach Graham, Jackson State''s Jenirro Bush, a former East Oktibbeha County High School standout, MSU''s Ravern Johnson and Renardo Sidney (MSU), and Delta State''s Phil Turner, a transfer from MSU, also received votes.
MSU''s Diamber Johnson and Ole Miss'' Courtney Marbra and Valencia McFarland also received votes.
MSU''s Jarvis Varnado and Alexis Rack won the awards last year.