USF rookie guard Elena Tsineke, an offensive catalyst for the Bulls since gaining her eligibility in mid-November, was named American Athletic Conference Freshman of the Year on Friday.
Tsineke, a 5-foot-8 native of Thessaloniki, Greece, also was a third-team pick on the coaches All-AAC team, where she was joined by sophomore teammate Elisa Pinzan. Tsineke is the third Bull to earn freshman-of-the-year honors in the last five seasons.
The fourth-seeded Bulls (18-12, 10-6) open play Saturday at noon in the American Athletic Conference tournament against the winner of today’s Tulane/Tulsa contest.
Tsineke, a member of Greece’s under-20 national team, leads USF with 12.4 points, and leads the AAC in free-throw efficiency at 87.5 percent (56-for-64). She has scored in double figures in 17 of her 24 contests.
Pinzan, the AAC leader in assists (4.8 per game), ranks second on the team with 9.7 points per game. Since returning from an ankle injury in early January, she has averaged 10.8 points and 5.2 assists, and has played all 40 minutes in five of USF’s last 13 games.