WILMINGTON, N.C. (UNCW press release) - Junior guard Jaylen Sims turned in a spectacular opening week for UNCW and was rewarded early Monday by being tabbed the Colonial Athletic Association’s initial Men’s Basketball Player of the Week.
Sims, a six foot six inch tall, 195-pound junior guard from Charlotte, put up some eye-popping numbers as the Seahawks went 2-1 and captured the championship of the Mako Medical Asheville Classic at UNC Asheville’s Kimmel Arena. It marks the first CAA weekly honor of Sims’ career.
In three contests, the versatile Sims averaged 26.7 points and 6.7 rebounds, while shooting 62.9 percent from the floor and 66.7 percent behind the arc. He also converted 75.0 percent at the free throw line and contributed on the defensive end of the floor as well.
“Jaylen was tremendous throughout the whole week,” said UNCW Head Coach Takayo Siddle. “I thought he was completely locked in all three games and did a great job leading our team. Offensively, he was red hot, but made great strides defensively as well. I’m very proud of Jaylen. Now the challenge for him will be can he continue to make his teammates better?”
Sims leads the CAA in scoring (26.7 ppg) and minutes played (38.9 mpg). He also ranks ninth in rebounding (6.7 rpg), fourth in field goal percentage (.629) and second in three-point field goal percentage (.667).
In the season opening loss against Western Carolina, a neutral site game kicking off the new campaign, Sims led the team with 27 points, canning 5-of-12 from the floor and 4-of-6 from three-point range. He also dropped in 13-of-18 free throws.
Sims followed up his season debut with another solid performance in Friday’s opener of the Mako Medical Asheville Classic. He drained 7-of-9 field goal attempts, including 2-of-4 from deep, and made 8-of-9 free throws as the Seahawks handed the hosts a 76-68 defeat.
In the tournament finale vs. Troy, Sims set another career high with 29 points on 10-of-14 shooting and connected on 6-of-8 from long distance as the Seahawks blew past the Trojans, 73-50.
Sims is UNCW’s first CAA Player of the Week since all-time great, Devontae Cacok, received the same honor on Jan. 14, 2019.