Jan. 15, 2014
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (seminoles.com) – Florida State women’s basketball player Yashira “Cheetah” Delgado is one of 29 NCAA Division I players named to the Nancy Lieberman Award Watch List, announced today by the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. The award recognizes the nation’s top point guard who exhibits 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.”
Delgado, a senior, has built a reputation as a speedy and durable floor general who is also an excellent distributor. In just her second season at Florida State, the Kissimmee, Fla., native is already in the Top 20 in school history with 246 career assists. This season, Delgado has a chance to break the single-season FSU record of 198 assists held by Courtney Ward (2009-10). Through her first 16 games, Delgado has totaled 98 assists while Ward posted 81 assists through the same time frame.
The 5-foot-2 guard has made her mark in the Atlantic Coast Conference this season. Delgado is first in the conference averaging 36.5 minutes per game, second in assists with 6.1 per game and tied for fifth with teammate Brittany Brown in steals with 2.4 per game.
Delgado has produced two double-doubles this season, opening her year with 12 points and 10 assists vs. UNC Greensboro and also recording 10 points and 10 assists at Miami on Jan. 9. As a shooter, she has played big roles in several FSU wins including its ACC game at Miami where she delivered a baseline floater with one minute left to extend FSU’s lead to 64-59. At Cincinnati, she also hit a few clutch free throws late in the game to seal the win.
The quick point guard joined teammate Natasha Howard on the Long Beach Classic All-Tournament Team, helping Florida State earn the tournament title over Long Beach State in December. To begin the season, she was the only FSU player to score in double figures in the team’s first five games.
The Hall of Fame appointed a premier Selection Committee made up of top college basketball personnel including media members, head coaches, sports information directors and Hall of Famers to review the candidates. The list will be narrowed down to a final 20 in February, then 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), Renee Montgomery (Connecticut), Diana Taurasi (Connecticut), Lindsey Harding (Duke), Courtney Vandersloot (Gonzaga), Temeka Johnson (LSU), Kristi Toliver(Maryland), Ivory Latta (North Carolina), and Andrea Riley (Oklahoma State).
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