With the Horizon League season-ending awards coming out today, a couple of Panthers collected high honors. Head Coach Kyle Rechlicz was named Horizon League Coach of the Year and sophomore forward Steph Kostowicz was named First Team All-Conference. For both Rechlicz and Kostowicz, the postseason recognition is well deserved as they both had excellent seasons.
Coach Rechlicz earned Coach of the Year honors by taking a Panther team that finished eighth in conference last year to a second place finish this season. Coach Rechlicz’s Panthers exceeded all expectations people around the conference had for them. Milwaukee was predicted to finish ninth in the Horizon this season. Under Rechlicz, the Panthers have steadily improved each season culminating in their 18-12 (12-6 Horizon) record this season. Most impressively, the Panthers excellent season came with one of the youngest rosters in the conference. Milwaukee is set to return eight of their nine leading scorers including three who average double-digits next season.
Kostowicz was also a very deserving pick for the all-conference first team. The sophmore forward averaged 13.8 points and 8.9 rebounds a game. Kostowicz finished in the top-10 in the conference in field goal percentage, rebounding and blocks. She also finished 11th in points per game. Kostowicz showcased the ability to take over games throughout the season as well. She scored 20 points or more in six games this season including three in her last six games.
The Panthers return to the floor in the conference tournament Saturday evening in Green Bay. The second-seed Panthers play at 5:30 p.m. Milwaukee received a double-bye so their opponent Saturday will have already played twice in the conference tournament prior to facing the Panthers. You can catch the game on ESPN 3 or The Big 920.