For Immediate Release: February 28, 2005
Contact: David O'Brian (
Phone: 607-777-6800

Kurpniece named America East Conference Women's Basketball Rookie of the Week
Binghamton earns third Rookie of the Week honor this season

America East Release

VESTAL, N.Y.-- Freshman center Laine Kurpniece (Riga, Latvia) has been named America East Conference Rookie of the Week for Feb. 21-27. It is the first collegiate honor for the 6-2 post player and the third time this season that a member of the Bearcats has been tabbed Rookie of the Week.

In a week dominated by stellar defensive efforts, Kurpniece averaged 9.0 points and 6.0 rebounds as Binghamton swept Hartford (51-37) and Boston (47-33) in its final two home games of the season. She had eight points and a team-high seven rebounds in the win over the Hawks as well as a team-high 11 points and five rebounds in the win over the Terriers. For the season, Kurpniece had reached double figures in scoring six times, led the Bearcats in scoring four times and in rebounding five times.

"Laine has continued to improve this season," head coach Rich Conover said. "She played a very important role in both of our wins last week."

The three Rookie of the Week awards for Binghamton this season is the most that the squad has earned since it joined the conference prior to the 2001-02 season. Earlier in the year, freshman guard Laura Sario (Espoo, Finland) was named the Co-Rookie of the Week for Jan. 10-16 and Jan. 24-30. The Bearcats had two weekly winners during the 2002-03 season.

In addition, Binghamton now has earned five overall weekly award winners this season. Earlier in the year, junior forward Rachel Laws (Wyncote, Pa.) was the America East Co-Player of the Week for Dec. 6-12 and Jan. 24-30. Until this season, the most weekly award winners Binghamton has had since joining the America East Conference was four, during the 2001-02 campaign.

Binghamton (10-15, 9-7 AE) travels to Northeastern for a 7 p.m. game on Wednesday. The Bearcats have already clinched a top-six seed for next week's America East Conference Tournament and can finish as high as No. 3.

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