BUTLER AND NEWSOME NAMED TENNESSEE SPORTS HALL OF FAME FEMALE AMATEUR ATHLETE OF THE YEAR
April 14, 2014
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee at Martin women’s basketball guards Heather Butler and Jasmine Newsome have been named two of the Tennessee Female Amateur Athletes of the Year, as announced by the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame. The seniors join Middle Tennessee’s Ebony Rowe and Tennessee’s Ivy Renfroe as this year’s Female Amateur Athlete of the Year award winners.
Butler, a native of Medina, Tenn., has certainly left her mark on not only the UT Martin record books, but those of the Ohio Valley Conference and the NCAA in her illustrious four year career. Butler began her career by passing UT Martin alum Pat Summitt as the fastest player to reach 1,000 points as a sophomore before ending her career as the school and conference’s all-time leader in points with 2,865 which ranks 16th in NCAA history. Named the 2014 OVC Player of the Year, Butler ranked ninth in the country in scoring with 23.6 points per game along with setting her third NCAA three-point record with 392 career three-pointers made. Included in her high scoring output was true consistency. Butler scored in double figures in 129 consecutive games - every game of her career - ranking as the second longest streak in NCAA history. Her mark of 129 games in double figures ranks fifth on the all-time NCAA list.
Along with her numerous accomplishments on the court - including four All-OVC first team honors, two outright OVC season championships, four OVC Tournament championships and four consecutive NCAA Tournament berths – Butler was tabbed a Senior CLASS Award All-American first team selection. Her individual recognitions continue to grow as she has been named a Final Five finalist for the Nancy Lieberman Award, nominee for the AllState WBCA Good Works team, CoSIDA Capital One Academic All-America second team and OVC Scholar-Athlete.
A Millington, Tenn. native, Newsome will go down as one of the best players in school and conference history. Newsome is a two-time OVC Player of the Year, three-time OVC Defensive Player of the Year and four-time member of both the All-OVC first team and OVC All-Tournament team. Throughout her career, Newsome has tallied 2,566 points which ranks both second in school and conference history. The program’s first Associated Press All-American, Newsome has started every game of her 130 game career while setting program single game records in points and assists. Newsome tallied 44 points in a victory over Quinnipiac before setting a new assist record on senior night with 14 assists against Austin Peay.
Newsome averaged 19 points, 5.7 assists, 3.6 rebounds and 2.7 steals per game this season en route to being named a finalist for the Nancy Lieberman Award and member of Naismith Trophy Watch List. She was also named All Mid-Major Player of the Year, OVC Player of the Year and Mid-Major All-American by College Sports Madness after scoring double figures in 27 of 32 games, including 20 or more points on 12 occasions. She was named OVC Tournament Most Valuable Player on three occasions, scoring 20 points or more in every OVC Tournament game of her career.
Butler and Newsome leaves UT Martin as the OVC’s top two career scorers, ranking as the first pair of teammates to ever rank first and second on the conference’s scoring list. The pair led the team to 87 wins in four years, the program’s first two outright OVC season championships, four OVC Tournament championships and four NCAA Tournament berths.
This year’s honorees will be recognized at the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame Celebration on Saturday, May 17 at the Renaissance Hotel in downtown Nashville. The 2014 Hall of Fame Class includes: Eddie George, Popeye Jones and Hope Hines.