BOSTON — UMBC men’s basketball picked up a pair of major awards, with four other Retrievers earning all-conference honors, the conference announced Feb. 25. Head coach Ryan Odom was named Coach of the Year while junior Keondre Kennedy (Atlanta, Ga.) was named Sixth Man of the Year, the first in program history.
Odom was named Coach of the Year after guiding the Retrievers to a share of the America East Regular Season title, the first since the 2007-08 season when then coach Randy Monroe was also named coach of the year. The Retrievers finished the regular season at 14-5, 10-4 AE winning double digit conference games for the third time during his tenure.
Kennedy earned Sixth Man of the Year honors for the role he played for UMBC coming off the bench. The Atlanta native played in all 19 games making just two starts. He averaged 24.7 mpg, 8.4 ppg and 4.4 rpg. Kennedy shot 42 percent from the floor and is top ten in the nation at 93.3 percent from the foul line.
Brandon Horvath (West River, Md./Southern) and R.J. Eytle-Rock (London, England) earned a spot on the All-Conference First Team. For Eytle-Rock, it is his second all-conference honor after being named to the All-Rookie Team in 2019, and for Horvath, his first all-conference honor. Eytle-Rock had a career year for the Retrievers averaging 14.1 ppg and 4.8 rpg shooting a career-best 47 percent from the floor and 41 percent from three. Horvath had a breakout season averaging 13.3 ppg and was tops in the league at 8.7 rpg shooting a shade under 50 percent from the floor.
Darnell Rogers (Baltimore, Md./Indian Land (SC)/New Mexico JC) earned a spot on the All-Defensive Team after finishing the season near the top of the league in steals. Rogers had 24 thefts, scoring at 9.6 ppg clip starting in every game this year. Dimitrije Spasojevic (Vrsac, Serbia) rounded out the honorees earning a spot on the All-Academic Team. Spasojevic holds a 3.84 GPA majoring in Sociology. He started 14 games down the stretch averaging 5.5 ppg and 4.2 rpg in just under 19 minutes per game.
UMBC will await their semifinal opponent in the #AEPlayoffs after this weekend’s pods. The Retrievers will host the lowest remaining seed on Saturday, March 6 at 2 p.m. The game will be broadcasted on either ESPN3 or ESPN+.
— UMBC Athletics press release
Photo Credit: Courtesy of UMBC Athletics