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03/30/05 - Chris Gilliam Named Independent Freshman of the Year; Paul Byer Earns Second Team All-Independent Honors

ATH04_BIO_012_gilliam_TChris Gilliam Named Independent Basketball Freshman of the Year;
Paul Byer Earns Second Team All-Independent Honors
03/30/05...Pitt-Johnstown freshman forward Chris Gilliam (Baltimore, MD/Lansdowne H.S.) was named 2004-05 NCAA Division II Men's Basketball Freshman of the Year, and senior forward Paul Byer (Johnstown, Pa./Conemaugh Township H.S.) earned a spot on the Second Team when this year's All-Independent Teams were released on Tuesday. In addition, senior center Carlos Cogsdell (Homestead, Pa./Central Catholic H.S.) and junior guard Joey Tutchstone (Vandergrift, Pa./Kiski Area H.S.) were Honorable Mention selections. Head Coach Bob Rukavina's Pitt-Johnstown team finished the season with a 12-13 overall record. This year's teams were made up of players from the eight Independent schools across the nation.
     Gilliam played in all 25 of the Mountain Cats' games during the 2004-05 season and averaged 6.4 points and 3.2 rebounds per game. He finished his freshman season with a team-best 64.8% (68-105) field goal percentage. Gilliam, who shot 64.9% (24-37) from the free-throw line, also blocked 11 shots, made 22 steals and had nine assists.
     Byer, a First Team All-Independent selection a year ago, led the Mountain Cats in scoring (14.8 ppg.) and was tied with Cogsdell for the team lead in rebounding (5.9 rpg.). He also led Pitt Johnstown in field goals made (137), three-point field goals made (58) and three-point field goal percentage (45.3%). Byer ended his Pitt-Johnstown career ranked 10th on the Mountain Cat All-Time Scoring List with 1,110 points.
     Joining Byer on the Second Team All-Independent Team are: Ryan Hopkins (Florida Gulf Coast University), Zach Weir (Oakland City (IN) University), Brian Crislip (Florida Gulf Coast) and Jonathan Maples (Palm Beach Atlantic (FL) University.
     Cogsdell and Tutchstone were also recognized as Honorable Mention selections. Cogsdell, a Second Team All-Independent selection in 2003-04, was tied with Byer for the team-lead in rebounding (5.9 rpg.) and was the third leading scorer (12.5 ppg.). Cogsdell also led the team with 19 blocks. He was second in field goals made (136) and third in field goal percentage at 50.6% (136-269). Cogsdell finished his Mountain Cat career ranked seventh on the All-Time Rebounding List with 556 rebounds and 12th on the All-Time Scoring List with 1,049 points. Tutchstone wrapped up his junior season ranked 25th in the country in assists per game at 5.4. Tutchstone was Pitt-Johnstown's third leading rebounder (4.2 rpg.) and fifth leading scorer (7.8 ppg.). His 244 career assists have him ranked seventh on the Mountain Cat All-Time Assist List.
     The eight schools making up the Division II Independents include: Cal State Monterey Bay, Columbia Union (MD) College, Florida Gulf Coast, Grand Canyon (AZ) University, Oakland City, Palm Beach Atlantic, Pitt-Johnstown and Tiffin (OH) University..... (Press Release)
Last Reviewed: March 30, 2005