HOUGHTON – Michigan Tech’s Ali Haidar officially joined some rare company Friday.
The senior from Windsor, Ontario was named to the Daktronics All-America First Team. The only other Husky basketball player to receive such an honor was current assistant coach Josh Buettner, who was selected to the NABC and Daktronics First Team in both 2003-04 and 2004-05.
Matt Cameron was a NABC and Basketball Times All-America Second Team selection in 2002-03 and a Daktronics Second Team and Division II Bulletin Fourth Team pick in 2001-02. J.T. Luginski was picked for the Daktronics Third Team in 2002-03.
Haidar himself was picked to the Basketball Times All-America Third Team last season.
The Daktronics All-America First Team is selected by members of the NCAA Division II Sports Information Directors Association.
Haidar makes the first team after leading the Huskies to their finest season since 2003-04. The 6-foot-7 forward helped Tech reach the Midwest Regional semifinals before being eliminated by Drury and ending with a 21-9 record.
He averaged 24.8 points per game, third in Division II, and 9.5 rebounds per game, 18th in Division II, while shooting 60.6 percent from the floor (271 of 447) and 74.2 percent from the line (187 of 252), adding 60 assists and 20 blocked shots. He finished his career with 1,940 points, good for fifth all-time in school history.
He set numerous records for the Huskies including career rebounds (887) and season scoring (711) Haidar was named the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Player of the Year for the second straight season. He set four GLIAC and seven school records this season.
He is joined on the All-America First Team by National Player of the Year Alex Falk of West Liberty, Clayton Vette of Winona State, Tyshawn Good of Belmont Abbey and Kevin Kotzur of St. Mary’s (Texas).
On the women’s side, Ashland’s Kari Daugherty was named National Player of the Year. Sam Hoyt of Michigan Tech received Second Team All-Region honors for a second consecutive season.