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Neighbors, Ramirez on SEC Tournament plus what she’s meant to Hogs

Arkansas coach Mike Neighbors on tournament, All-SEC guard Amber Ramirez previewing tournament in Nashville, plus what she’s meant to team.



FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — Three Razorbacks were honored by the Southeastern Conference today, as Amber Ramirez, Samara Spencer and Jersey Wolfenbarger all picked up their first postseason honors from the league office.

Ramirez was named Second Team All-SEC, Samara Spencer was named the league’s freshman of the year, and Wolfenbarger was named to the All-Freshman team.

Ramirez put together an excellent final season, earning second team honors after deciding to run it back at Arkansas.

She has been on an absolute tear since the calendar turned to 2022, finishing with an average 18.9 points per game, the fourth-highest mark in the league.

Ramirez also led the league in three-point makes during conference play (52) and finished second in three-point percentage (44.8).

Ramirez did more than score though, and her presence on the defensive glass was a big reason for the Hogs’ success this season with a younger team.

She finished seventh in the league in defensive rebounds per game (5.3) during conference games, tops in the league among players under six feet tall.

Ramirez put several great performances to the hardwood during her final season on the Hill, including a 25-point outburst in Arkansas’ win over then-No. 12 LSU, a 25-point nine-rebound outing in Arkansas’ massive road win at Mizzou, and a 30-point performance against Auburn, which was capped by a game-winning floater with 0.3 seconds left to play.

Spencer, meanwhile, became the Hogs’ first freshman of the year honoree since C’eira Ricketts, who won the award all the way back in 2009.

In a class loaded with five-star players and McDonald’s All-Americans, Spencer stood out from the jump, and finished the season averaging 12.1 points per game, good for third on the team, and 3.2 assists per game, best on the squad.

Though she had a slow start to SEC play, Spencer came alive following the Hogs’ loss to No. 1 South Carolina.

Since January 20 on, Spencer averaged 16.6 points, 4.4 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game, all while shooting 45 percent from the field. Because of that, Spencer won the SEC’s freshman of the week award four times, the second-most in a single season ever by a Hog.

In SEC play, the Fort Lauderdale, Florida native finished 20th in the league in scoring average (13.5 PPG) and 12th in the league in assists per game (3.5).

There were several memorable moments for Spencer this season, including a 19-point game against Mississippi State in Bud Walton Arena, a 22-point, seven-rebound, six-assist showing at Mizzou, and a 20-point performance against then-No. 12 LSU.

A member of the SEC’s 2022 all-freshman team, Jersey Wolfenbarger came on strong to close out her first regular season on the Hill.

Wolfenbarger finished the season averaging 8.1 points and 4.3 rebounds per game. Wolfenbarger did most of her damage playing out of position, as she was thrust into a starting role down low after Erynn Barnum went down against Cal on Dec. 5.

Since then, Wolfenbarger has started 19 games, averaging 8.7 points and 4.7 rebounds per game. As she got more comfortable down low, the numbers followed recording back-to-back double-doubles at Texas A&M (12 points, 10 rebounds) and at Missouri (12 points, 11 rebounds).

In February, she reached double figures in four of the Hogs’ eight games, while shooting 50 percent or better in four of those games.

Wolfenbarger finished the regular season strong, going for 13 points and six rebounds at Mississippi State.

She averaged 11.5 points and 8.0 rebounds against Missouri this season.

Information from Arkansas Communications is included in this story.


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