1993 NCAA Div. III champions
PELLA—Recently named Central College women’s basketball head coach Chelsea Petersen received more good news Wednesday as junior Kenzie Vander Molen (Pella) was named to the Iowa Conference first team following a career campaign.
Vander Molen, a 5-foot-7 guard, helped lead the Dutch to their winningest campaign since 2003-04 (11-14) after opening the season a program-best 6-0. She ended the regular season as the league’s second-leading scorer with 16.2 points, was second in assists with 3.2 and fourth in steals with 1.7 per game. She also grabbed 3.1 rebounds from the point guard position, all while playing a league-leading 36.76 minutes per game.
It’s Central’s first first-team all-league honoree since Laura Porter in 2007.
“This caps off a great season for Kenzie,” said Petersen. “Being named first team all-conference is not an easy thing to do, but she separated herself as one of the elite players in the league. She played really high-caliber basketball in January and February, which is always the goal from a coaching perspective.”
Vander Molen was named to the D3hoops.com Team of the Week and was named league female athlete of the week after averaging 24.0 points per game on 15-of-32 shooting in the team’s conference-opening weekend.
Vander Molen scored a career-high 30 points at Loras Jan. 18 and hauled in a career-high seven rebounds on two occasions. She also tallied career bests with seven assists against Nebraska Wesleyan Nov. 26 and four steals at Martin Luther (Minn.) Dec. 7.
Vander Molen’s 36 3-point field goals tie for ninth on the school season leaderboard, while her league-leading 119 free throws rank fifth all-time at Central.
“Kenzie did an outstanding job controlling the pace of the game and creating opportunities for herself and her teammates,” Petersen said. “Off the court she is a great representative of Central College and Dutch women’s basketball. For the program it’s a step in the right direction and a sign of things to come.
“I’m extremely proud of her.”