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2019-20 Annual Pac-12 Women’s Basketball Conference Honors Announced

Mar 3, 2020

2019-20 PAC-12 WOMEN’S BASKETBALL HONORS
OREGON'S IONESCU NAMED PAC-12 PLAYER OF THE YEAR
ARIZONA'S MCDONALD NAMED PAC-12 DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
USC'S PILI NAMED PAC-12 FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR
OREGON'S CHAVEZ NAMED PAC-12 SIXTH PLAYER OF THE YEAR
OREGON'S GRAVES VOTED JOHN R. WOODEN PAC-12 COACH OF THE YEAR

SAN FRANCISCO - In a vote of the league’s 12 women’s basketball head coaches, OREGON's Sabrina Ionescu was voted the Pac-12 Player of the Year for the third-straight year, while USC’a Alissa Pili was tabbed the Pac-12 Freshman of the Year, ARIZONA’s Aari McDonald was named the Pac-12 Defensive Player of the Year and the Ducks’ Taylor Chavez won the Pac-12 Sixth Player of the Year award, the Conference office announced on Tuesday. Additionally, OREGON head coach Kelly Graves was voted the John R. Wooden Coach of the Year by his colleagues for the second-straight year. In addition to the major conference awards that were announced today, the 15-member All-Pac-12 team, All-Freshman Team and All-Defensive Team were announced today. Oregon’s Ruthy Hebard and Sabrina Ionescu earned a spot on the all-Conference team for the fourth-consecutive year, while WASHINGTON STATE’s Borislava Hristova is all-Conference for the third time. The Conference Coach of the Year award was renamed in honor of the late John R. Wooden, former legendary UCLA coach, during the 2010-11 campaign. The Pac-12 Women’s Basketball Tournament takes place this week, March 5-8, at Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. Tickets are available for purchase at pac-12.com/tickets. The complete list of honors is listed below:

PAC-12 PLAYER OF THE YEAR
SABRINA IONESCU, SR., G, OREGON

Carving her name into the NCAA, Pac-12 and school record books, Ionescu is the first student-athlete in league history to win Pac-12 Player of the Year three-consecutive years and is the second to win the honor three times since Stanford’s Candice Wiggins (2005, 2006, 2008). A guard from Walnut Creek, Calif., Ionescu became the first player in NCAA women’s or men’s history to amass 2,000 points, 1,000 rebounds and 1,000 assists. One of five players in NCAA Division I women’s basketball history to collect 1,000 assists, she ranks fifth in the category with 1,064, shattering the Pac-12 mark which was broken two seasons ago by former UCLA Bruin Jordin Canada. Ionescu leads the country with a 9.1 assists per game average, over an assist per game more than the next-closest player. She boasts the second-best free throw shooting percentage in the country at 92.6 percent and is fourth with a 3.09 assist-to-turnover ratio. Her eight triple-doubles on the season ties a NCAA single-season record which she set last season. Her 26-career triple-doubles are more than double that of the next closest in NCAA men’s or women’s history (12, Kyle Collinsworth, BYU). Winner of the Wade Trophy and John R. Wooden Award after her junior campaign and leading the team to the NCAA Final Four for the first time in problem history last year, she is a national player of the year candidate for all the major honors, as well as the Nancy Lieberman Award, presented to the nation’s top point guard, an honor she has won the last two seasons. In addition to her 9.1 assists per game, Ionescu is second on the team and fourth in the Pac-12 in scoring at 16.9 points per game, while grabbing 8.5 rebounds per game, third-most in the Pac-12. The ESPN.com National Player of the Week twice this season and was the Pac-12 Player of the Week three times, she has led the Ducks to capture their third-straight Pac-12 regular-season title and No. 1 seed in the Pac-12 Tournament for the third year in a row. Projected to be a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament, the Ducks have been ranked in the top-five in the country for 17 weeks this season.

 

PAC-12 FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR
ALISSA PILI, F, USC

Pili, a forward from Anchorage, Alaska, locks up the Pac-12 Freshman of the Year honors after being named Pac-12 Freshman of the Week four times this season, including the final week of the season. She becomes the first Trojan to win the honor since Briana Gilbreath in 2009. She is the fifth Trojan to win the honor, joining the likes of Lisa Leslie (1991) and Tina Thompson (1994). Pili has scored 20+ points in 21 games, posting a double-double 10 times so far. Her 16.2 points and 8.1 rebounds per game rank her eight and fifth, respectively, in the Pac-12. She has an efficient scoring touch, knocking down 50.9 percent of her shot attempts. Heading into the Pac-12 Tournament as the No. 7 seed, Pili has helped the Trojans close out the regular season with an 8-5 record after starting the season at 0-5. Pili was the only freshman to be named to the All-Pac-12 team and was one of just three underclassmen to earn a spot.

 

 

PAC-12 DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR
AARI MCDONALD, JR., G, ARIZONA

Though known for her prolific offense and considered one of the fastest players in NCAA women’s basketball, McDonald (Fresno, Calif.) is the second Wildcat to earn the Conference’s top defensive honor and first since Ify Ibekwe won it in 2011. She leads the Pac-12 with 2.5 steals per game, helping Arizona to limit its opponents to just 55.0 points per game, which ranks as the 14th-best defensive scoring average in the country. McDonald leads the Pac-12 and ranks 13th in the country at 20.3 ppg. She has helped to revive an Arizona program that won the WNIT last season before posting the most league wins and overall wins in program history since 2004. McDonald has twice been named Pac-12 Player of the Week this year and was the ESPN.com National Player of the Week on Nov. 18.

 

PAC-12 SIXTH PLAYER OF THE YEAR
TAYLOR CHAVEZ, SO, G, OREGON

Chavez is a sophomore from Surprise, Ariz., and is the second-ever student-athlete to earn the Pac-12 Sixth Player of the Year honor. She has played in 17 Conference games for the Ducks, averaging 21.2 minutes per game off the bench. She contributes 6.6 points per game and 1.6 rebounds per game, and is the top three-point threat for the team, shooting a team-best 47.8 percent from long range. In a win over Utah Sate early in the season, Chavez knocked down six threes for a total of 25 points.

 

JOHN R. WOODEN PAC-12 COACH OF THE YEAR
KELLY GRAVES, OREGON

After taking the Ducks to their first-ever NCAA Final Four last year, Kelly Graves is named Pac-12 Coach of the Year for the second-straight year. Graves has led the Ducks to a top-five national ranking in 17 weeks this season with the team earning top billing for the first four weeks of the season. Under his tutelage, three Ducks have been named to the All-Pac-12 team with Sabrina Ionescu and Ruthy Hebard earning the nod for the fourth time each. He has led Oregon to its fifth 20-win campaign, winning at least 28 games in each of the last three years. In a league featuring six ranked teams most of the season, Oregon has clinched the Pac-12 regular-season crown and the No. 1 seed in the Pac-12 Tournament for the third year in a row. The Ducks are also projected to be a No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.

 

ALL-PAC-12 (15 members)
Name School Pos. Yr. Hometown
Japreece Dean
UCLA
G
Sr.
Austin, Texas
Ruthy Hebard****
Oregon
F
Sr.
Fairbanks, Alaska
Borislava Hristova***
Washington State
F
Sr.
Varna, Bulgaria
Lexie Hull
Stanford
G
So.
Spokane, Wash.
Sabrina Ionescu****
Oregon
G
Sr.
Walnut Creek, Calif.
Aari McDonald**
Arizona
G
Jr.
Fresno, Calif.
Amber Melgoza**
Washington
G
Sr.
Santa Barbara, Calif.
Michaela Onyenwere**
UCLA
F
Jr.
Aurora, Calif.
Alissa Pili
USC
F
Fr.
Anchorage, Alaska
Mikayla Pivec**
Oregon State
G
Sr.
Lynnwood, Wash.
Cate Reese
Arizona
F
So.
Cypress, Texas
Robbi Ryan
Arizona State
G
Sr.
Sheridan, Wyo.
Satou Sabally**
Oregon
F
Jr.
Berlin, Germany
Destiny Slocum**
Oregon State
G
Jr.
Meridian, Idaho
Kiana Williams**
Stanford
G
Jr.
San Antonio, Texas
 HONORABLE MENTION (receiving at least one point): Jaelyn Brown, CAL (Sr., G/F); Mya Hollingshed, COLO (Jr., G/F); Taylor Jones, OSU (Fr., F); Brynna Maxwell, UTAH (Fr., G); Chanelle Molina, WSU (Sr., G); Reili Richardson, ASU (Sr., G); Ja'Tavia Tapley, ASU (Sr., F); Sam Thomas, ARIZ (Jr., F).
 
ALL-DEFENSIVE (5 members)
Name School  Pos.   Yr.   Hometown
Lexie Hull
Stanford
G
So.
Spokane, Wash.
Aari McDonald**
Arizona
G
Jr.
Fresno, Calif.
Minyon Moore***
Oregon
G
Sr.
Hercules, Calif.
Mikayla Pivec
Oregon State
G
Sr.
Lynnwood, Wash.
Sam Thomas
Arizona
F
Jr.
Las Vegas, Nev.
HONORABLE MENTION (receiving at least one point): Quinessa Caylao-Do, COLO (Sr., G); Nadia Fingall, STAN (Sr., F); Aleah Goodman, OSU (Jr., G); Lacie Hull, STAN (So., G); Taylor Jones, OSU (Fr., F); Chanelle Molina, WSU (Sr., G); Charisma Osborne, UCLA (Fr., G); Kayla Overbeck, USC (Sr., F); Kiara Russell, ASU (Sr., G); Evelien Lutje Schipholt, CAL (Fr., F); Kiana Williams, STAN (Jr., G).
 
ALL-FRESHMAN TEAM
Name School Pos. Hometown
Taylor Jones
Oregon State
F
Forney, Texas
Brynna Maxwell
Utah
G
Gig Harbor, Wash.
Charisma Osborne
UCLA
G
Moreno Valley, Calif.
Alissa Pili
USC
F
Anchorage, Alaska
Jaylyn Sherrod
Colorado
G
Birmingham, Ala.
HONORABLE MENTION (receiving at least one point): Francesca Belibi, STAN (Fr., F); Jazlen Green, CAL (Fr., G); Lola Pendande, UTAH (Fr., F); Ashten Prechtel, STAN (Fr., F); Helena Pueyo, ARIZ (Fr., G); Endyia Rogers, (Fr. G); Jaz Shelley, ORE (Fr., F).