Jan. 11, 2022
For Immediate Release
Contact: Jeff Bernstein
212-998-2031
Association continues to honor Div. III standouts
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SOBEL, GRUNDAHL ARE USBWA
DIV. III NATIONAL PLAYERS OF THE WEEK

INDIANAPOLIS (USBWA)Alex Sobel of Middlebury College (Middlebury, Vt.) and Aleah Grundahl of The University of Wisconsin-Whitewater (Whitewater, Wis.) were named the U.S. Basketball Writers Association Division III National Players of the Week for the week ending January 9.

Sobel, a 6-8 junior forward from Setauket, N.Y., averaged a double-double in leading Middlebury (receiving votes D3hoops.com) to three victories last week. On Tuesday, he scored 15 points (6-of-8 FG, 3-of-7 FT), collected nine rebounds, and added three assists and three blocks in a 78-74 win over Skidmore. Sobel then totaled 24 points (8-of-15 FG, 8-of-10 FT), 15 rebounds and three blocks in the Panthers' (11-2, 2-0) 78-64 victory over Amherst (receiving votes). Then, on Saturday, he finished with 28 points (8-of-19 FG, 12-of-18 FT), a career-high 21 rebounds, three assists, two steals, and two blocks in a 67-59 win against Hamilton. Over the three games, Sobel averaged 22.3 points, 15.0 rebounds, 2.0 assists, 0.6 steals, and 2.3 blocks while shooting 52.3 percent (22-of-42) from the field and 65.7 percent (23-of-35) from the from the foul line. For his efforts, Sobel, who currently ranks third in NCAA Division III in total blocks (47), fourth in double-doubles (9) and fifth in blocks per game (3.62), was also named New England Small College Athletic Conference (NESCAC) Player of the Week.

Grundahl, a 6-0 junior forward from DeForest, Wis., helped lead No. 8 (D3hoops.com) UW-Whitewater to a pair of conference victories against ranked opponents. Her three-pointer with five seconds left in the fourth quarter on Wednesday sent the game into overtime and the Warhawks (13-1, 4-0) went on to defeat then-No. 18 UW-Oshkosh 67-63. Grundahl finished the contest with 14 points (5-of-12 FG, 2-of-4 FT, 2-of-2 3FG), seven rebounds, three assists, and a steal. On Saturday, against then-No. 10 UW-Eau Claire, she scored a career-high 28 points (12-of-19 FG, 1-of-2 FT, 3-of-5 3FG) and added five rebounds, two assists, three steals, and a block in the 73-64 victory. For the week, Grundahl averaged 21.0 points, 6.0 rebounds, 2.5 assists, 2.0 steals, and 0.5 blocks while shooting 54.8 percent from the field (17-of-31), 50 percent from the foul line (3-of-6) and 71.4 percent (5-of-7) from three-point range. For her efforts, Grundahl was also named Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) Player of the Week.

Each Tuesday, the USBWA is selecting men's and women's Division III National Players of the Week. The program has resumed after a one-season hiatus and this is the seventh season that the USBWA will recognize national players of the week from Division III.

The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. With some 900 members worldwide, it is one of the most influential organizations in college basketball. It has selected an All-America team since the 1956-57 season. For more information on the USBWA and its award programs, contact executive director Malcolm Moran at 814-574-1485.

2021-22 USBWA Division III National Players of the Week
Week ending Nov. 21: Buzz Anthony, Randolph-Macon College and Abbey Lawrence, Case Western Reserve University
Week ending Nov. 28: Ryan Turell, Yeshiva University and Claudia Cooke, Kenyon College
Week ending Dec. 5: Lyle Tipton, Geneva College and Meg Carroll, Lasell University
Week ending Dec. 12: Ryan Turell, Yeshiva University and Hanna Geistfeld, Bethany Lutheran College
Week ending Dec. 19: Luke Feely, University of Mary Hardin-Baylor and Cayla Sharkey, Gwynedd Mercy University
Week ending Jan. 2: Jack Davidson, Wabash College and Jenna Taylor, Simpson College
Week ending Jan. 9: Alex Sobel, Middlebury College and Aleah Grundahl, University of Wisconsin-Whitewater