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01/15/2014

McClanahan Named To Lieberman Award Watch List For Nation's Top Point Guard

Quick Facts

 McClanahan is a two-time Big South Conference Player of the Year.
 She is also Winthrop's all-time leading scorer in both men's and women's basketball.

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Dequesha McClanahan
ROCK HILL, S.C. — Winthrop senior basketball standout Dequesha McClanahan is among 29 players who are included on the watch list of candidates for the 2014 Nancy Lieberman Award, which recognizes the top point guard in women’s NCAA Division I college basketball. The awards were announced today by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame.

McClanahan along with the other candidates exhibit the floor leadership, play-making and ball-handling skills of Hall of Famer Nancy Lieberman.

“We are honored to have the opportunity to award a young athlete that shows the same sort of dedication to the game of basketball as the legendary Nancy Lieberman,” said John L. Doleva, president and CEO of the Basketball Hall of Fame. “This award is our chance to recognize some truly extraordinary point guards in women’s college basketball.”

McClanahan is a two-time Big South Conference Player of the Year and was voted the 2014 Preseason Player of the Year by the league’s head coaches and media panel. She is averaging 17.5 points and a league-leading 7.8 assists per game.  Her assist total ranks her among the nation’s top five assist leaders. She is closing in on 2,000 points in her career, and she has already broken the Winthrop all-time scoring record for both the women’s and men’s programs.

McClanahan, an exercise science major from Oakridge, Tenn., said the award recognizes women for their leadership ability as point guards. "I grasped that role after I began playing on the collegiate level," said McClanahan. "This honor shows how much my leadership has improved both on the court and off the court as a point guard in helping my team. I am very proud and blessed to be among girls from different universities who are being considered for the Lieberman Award."

A Selection Committee made up of top college basketball personnel including media members, head coaches, sports information directors and Hall of Famers has been appointed to review the candidates. The list will be narrowed down to a final 20 in February, and then the final five by March. The Lieberman Award winner will be announced during Final Four weekend activities.

“It’s amazing to be able to have my name associated with some of the best point guards and most well-rounded female athletes at the college level,” Lieberman said. “This is the first year the award is hosted by the Hall of Fame and I think candidates will be even more aware of how prestigious this honor is.”

Previous winners of the Nancy Lieberman Award include last year’s recipient Skylar Diggins (Notre Dame), Sue Bird (Connecticut), Lindsey Harding (Duke), Temeka Johnson (LSU), Kristi Toliver (Maryland) and Andrea Riley (Oklahoma State).

For more information, contact Jack Frost, assistant athletics director for media relations, at 803/323-2129 ext. 6245 or e-mail him at frostj@winthrop.edu.

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