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Dwight Hardy, All-Big East 1st team

St. John's Dwight Hardy (12) takes a shot

St. John's Dwight Hardy (12) takes a shot as he collides with Seton Hall's Jordan Theodore (10) during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game. (March 3, 2011) Credit: AP

Dwight Hardy to day became the first St. John's player since Leonard Hamilton in 2007 to be named to the first team All-Big East Conference basketball team. The senior guard led a renaissance in Queens this season with a 17.9 scoring average on .452 shooting, including .355 accuracy from three-point range.

Hardy was at his best in the biggest games, pouring in 26 points in a win over Duke, 32 in a loss at UCLA, 33 in a win over Connecticut, 28 in a win at Marquette, 19, including the winning basket, against Pittsburgh and 34 in a win at Villanova. He lifted his game to lead the Red Storm to a 9-2 finish of the regular season, averaging 23.9 points during that span.

"Dwight Hardy is as deserving of the All-Big East Conference recognition as any player I've coached," St. John's coach Steve Lavin said. "The dominating performance and leadership Dwight has provided over the course of his senior year has been a catalyst in St. John's success."

Hardy is joined on the six-man first team by Notre Dame guard Ben Hansbrough, who was a unanimous selection, Connecticut guard Kemba Walker, Goegetown guard Austin Freeman, who was the preseason pick as player of the year, Providence swing man Marshon Brooks and Pittsburgh guard Ashton Gibbs. The unanimous vote for Hansbrough might be an indicator of what to expect on Tuesday when the player of the year is announced, but Hardy certainly is in the running after the part he played in St. John's revival.

New York Sports