OVERLAND PARK, Kan. – Seniors Kia Nurse (Hamilton, Ontario) and Gabby Williams (Sparks, Nev.) are one of 60 student-athletes selected as candidates for the Division I Men’s and Women’s 2017-18 Senior CLASS Award, as announced on Thursday. To be eligible for the award, a student-athlete must be qualified as an NCAA DI senior and have notable achievements in four areas of excellence: community, classroom, character and competition.
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Senior CLASS Award focuses on the total student-athlete and encourages students to use their platform in athletics to make a positive impact as leaders in their communities.
Nurse, a four-year starter for the Huskies, is averaging a career-high 15.8 points so far this season. The Hamilton, Ontario native has recorded 10 double-figure games this year including a team-best four 20-point performances. In early November, the senior was tabbed to the Nancy Lieberman Award watch list which recognizes the top point guard in women’s NCAA Division I college basketball that exhibits the floor leadership, play-making and ball-handling skills of Hall of Famer Nancy Lieberman. Throughout her four years in Storrs, Nurse has started 119 of 122 games played and accumulated 1,362 points in an UConn uniform.
Williams is one of six Huskies averaging double-figures as the forward is chipping in 11.6 points per game. Named to the 2018 Cheryl Miller Award watch list for the top small forward in DI women’s basketball, Nurse is leading the conference with a .616 field goal percentage on 61-99 shooting from the floor. Her team-best 31 steals are a third best in the American, while her 52 assists rank fifth. Williams has played in 128 career games and owns 1,319 career points as a Husky.
Among the 60 candidates, all are in excellent academic standing with 14 having grade-point averages of 3.5 or higher. Each of the candidates also volunteers his or her time with charitable organizations and causes while upholding a reputation for positive character on campus and in the community.
Each of the 30 candidate classes will be narrowed to fields of 10 finalists in February, and those 10 names will be placed on the official ballot. Ballots will be distributed through a nationwide voting system to media, coaches and fans, who will select one male candidate and one female candidate who best exemplifies excellence in the four Cs of community, classroom, character and competition.
The Senior CLASS Award winners will be announced during the 2018 NCAA Men’s Final Four® and NCAA Women’s Final Four® this spring. For more information on each of the candidates, visit seniorCLASSaward.com.
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