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Frink, Hermannsson Earn All-NEC First Team Recognition

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BROOKLYN, N.Y. - Junior Jerome Frink and sophomore Martin Hermannsson were both named to the All-Northeast Conference First Team, it was announced by the league on Tuesday. Frink, who was named NEC Player of the Week twice during the regular season, earns his first all-conference honor while Hermannsson was named to the first team after being named to the All-Rookie Team in 2014-15.

In his first season with the Blackbirds, the 6-7 Frink was a force from the start as he registered double figures in scoring in 25 of the 29 games this season. In the opening game of the year, his blocked shot with less than five seconds remaining led to the game-winning, buzzer-beating three that defeated Loyola (Md.), 71-68. The following contest, Frink scored 25 points in an 84-79 win over Maine and continued his fine play through the non-conference season.

In LIU's overtime loss at Atlantic 10 opponent Fordham, Frink carried the Blackbirds throughout the second half, connecting on a game-tying three that forced overtime and finishing with a career-high 30 points on 12-of-18 shooting. The Jersey City, N.J. native finished the non-league campaign with another double-double, a 21-point, 13-rebound performance in another narrow loss to another A10 school, UMass.

Frink began the NEC season with 14 straight double-figure scoring outings, including 24 points and 14 rebounds in a win against Sacred Heart. The versatile forward had 26 points and 14 rebounds in LIU's second victory of the season over top-seeded Wagner on Feb. 11, and finished the regular season with 23 points and 11 boards in a home contest against Bryant.

Through 29 games, Frink ranked third in the league in scoring at 16.9 points per game, tied for second in rebounding at 9.1 per game and also ranked among the league leaders in field goal percentage, blocked shots and steals.

Hermannsson, who was named to the NEC's All-Rookie Team after a standout as a freshman with LIU Brooklyn, used a summer in which he played for the Icelandic National Team to propel him to new heights this year. The 6-3 guard improved in all major categories including a 63 percent jump in scoring production (10.1 ppg in 2014-15; 16.5 ppg in 2015-16).

In the second contest of the year against Maine, Hermannsson set a new career high with 23 points to help the Blackbirds to an 84-79 victory. In a road win over Niagara, the Reykjavik, Iceland product tallied 17 points and seven assists and then posted back-to-back 18-point performances against Incarnate Word and UMass.

Northeast Conference play, however, is when Hermannsson stepped up his game. Through the 18-game schedule, the combo guard averaged 17.3 points, 5.0 rebounds and 5.2 assists per game and shot 47.7 percent from the field and 91.1 percent from the free-throw line. Hermannsson had an impressive 2.5-to-1 assist-to-turnover ratio in conference play and also averaged 1.9 steals per outing.

In LIU's 92-84 win over Sacred Heart on Jan. 27, Hermannsson had one of the best lines of any college basketball player this season with 22 points, eight rebounds, seven assists, five steals and no turnovers. He became the first NCAA Division I player in the last six years to have a game with similar production levels.

Just over two weeks later, Hermannsson had a similar game with 19 points, seven rebounds, five assists, five steals and no turnovers in a win over St. Francis Brooklyn. And over the final two games, the crafty guard was at his best, averaging 20.0 points, 7.0 rebounds, 7.0 assists and once again not turning the ball over in 73 minutes of game action.

Frink, Hermannsson and the rest of the Blackbirds finished the regular season with a 15-14 record and are the No. 6 seed in the upcoming NEC Tournament. LIU will take on Sacred Heart on Wednesday, March 2 in the quarterfinal round. Tipoff is set for 7:00 p.m. The game will be televised by MSG Network and Fox College Sports, and will also be available online on NEC Front Row.

Posted 03/03/2016

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