UAlbany head coach Katie Abrahamson-Henderson was named the America East Conference Women’s Basketball Coach of the Year, announced at the 2012 awards reception held on the University of Hartford campus on Thursday. Junior guard/forward Ebone Henry was also named the league’s Defensive Player of the Year, for the second straight season. Junior forward Julie Forster was also an All-Conference Second Team selection.

Abrahamson-Henderson, in just her second year at the helm of the UAlbany program, led the Great Danes to a 20-9 record and the second seed in the conference tournament. It is the first time in Division I history, and the first time since the 1991-92 season, that UAlbany has reached the 20-win plateau. Abrahamson-Henderson took over a squad that went 11-19 in 2009-10, and guided them to the program’s first winning season in 2010-11 with a 16-14 record. Under her guidance, the Great Danes continued to show a remarkable improvement this season, going undefeated on the road during the league slate to post a 14-2 conference record.

Henry, an All-Conference First Team and All-Defensive Team selection, has blossomed under Abrahamson-Henderson’s tutelage, and was named the conference’s Defensive Player of the Year for the second consecutive season. Henry, the first player to earn the award for UAlbany, was also an All-Conference First Team selection this year, after leading the team in scoring with 14.1 points per game. She was also first in the league in steals, recording 2.7 thefts per game. Henry, a native of San Diego, Calif., scored her 1,000th career point this season. She has reached double-figure scoring totals in 22 games, including the last six straight, and has also recorded seven double-doubles on the season while averaging 7.2 rebounds per game.

Forster moves up to the All-Conference Second Team after a third-team appearance last year, and was also named to the All-Defensive Team for the second consecutive season. Forster, who is currently second on UAlbany’s all-time career rebound chart with 836 caroms in three seasons, led the conference in rebounding for the third straight season. A native of Huntington, N.Y., Forster averaged 9.8 boards per game during the regular season, pulling down double-figure totals in 16 games. She is also averaging 8.8 points per game and leads the Great Danes with 30 blocks.

Forster, who holds a 3.97 cumulative grade point average in business administration, was also named to the All-Academic Team, for the second year in a row.

UAlbany will kick off the conference tournament on Friday evening, taking on the seventh-seeded Vermont Catamounts at 6:05 p.m.

The preceding information was provided by Brianna LaBrecque, Interim Director of Athletic Communications for the University at Albany.