USC's Virginia Powell Named Honda Award Winner For Track And Field

June 12, 2006

USC senior Virginia Powell was selected as the 2005-06 Honda Award winner as the nation's top women's track and field athlete, it was announced on Sunday, June 11 by the College Women Sports Award program.

Powell was selected based on national balloting among 1,000 NCAA member schools as part of the Collegiate Women's Sports Awards program, now in its 30th year. The Honda Awards are given annually to the top women athletes in 12 NCAA-sanctioned sports and includes an automatic nomination for the Collegiate Women Athlete of The Year, the Honda-Broderick Cup. The other track and field Honda Award finalists were Chelsea Johnson (UCLA), Marshevet Hooker (Texas) and Melaine Walker (Texas).

It has been a big week for Powell as she won the 2006 NCAA Championship in the 100m hurdles in Sacramento, Calif. on June 9 and helped lead her USC team to a second-place finish in the team competition, also running the first leg of the Trojans' 4x100m relay team that set a school record with a time of 42.96 and placed third in Friday's finals.

In the semi-finals of the NCAA Championships, Powell set the collegiate 100m hurdles all-time record with a time of 12.55, a record she had co-held with Gail Devers (1988) at 12.61. Then in Friday's finals, Powell broke the record again in winning the 100m title in a time of 12.48. The eight-time All-American now has the two fastest times in the 100m HH recorded in the world this year and the fifth-fastest ever by a U.S. female.

Her win in this year's NCAA Outdoor Championships completed her second consecutive season of sweeping the sprint hurdles titles, winning the 60m indoor hurdles and 100m outdoor hurdles championship in both 2005 and 2006. Her winning time in the 60m hurdles at the 2006 NCAA Indoor Championships of 7.84 also established a collegiate record.

Angela Williams is USC's only other track and field Honda Award recipient, winning the award for her 2001-02 season. Williams then went on to win the Honda-Broderick Cup.

Previously announced 2005-2006 Honda Award recipients include Irene Cho of USC for golf, Ashley Miles of Alabama for gymnastics, Seimone Augustus of LSU for basketball, Mary DeScenza of Georgia for swimming, Christine Sinclair of Portland for soccer, Courtney Thompson of Washington for volleyball, Caroline Bierbaum of Columbia for cross-country, Kristen Kjellman of Northwestern for lacrosse, Kristi Miller of Georgia Tech for tennis and Paula Infante of Maryland for field hockey. The 12th and final Honda Award winner is from softball and will be announced today.

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