UND’s Lexi Klabo Named to Cheryl Miller Award Watch List

Klabo is one of three players from a mid-major school represented on the list

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (UND Athletics) —  University of North Dakota senior forward Lexi Klabo was named to the 2019 Cheryl Miller Award Watch List, announced Wednesday by the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) and the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame. The preseason list is comprised of 20 players that are among the best at their position in all of NCAA Division I women’s basketball.

The Cheryl Miller Award is in its infancy with last year’s inaugural winner coming from UConn and Gabby Williams. This season, Klabo is one of just three mid-major schools included on the list with players from power conferences making up the bulk of the nominees.

“It’s an exciting honor for Lexi to be recognized for the Cheryl Miller Award by the Naismith Memorial Hall of Fame and WBCA,” UND head coach Travis Brewster said. “Here at the University of North Dakota, we work hard to attract blue collar players like Lexi, that grow and work for success, embracing and wanting to honor our fans as well as the players of the past while inspiring those of the future. It shows she’s a culture solidifier that is down to Earth, selfless and hard-working. Lexi is poised to have continued mindful performances this season alongside her teammates.”

Klabo, a 2018 Preseason All-Summit League First Teamer, goes into her senior season already armed with over 1,000 career points and approaching the top 10 in several statistical categories among the all-time greats at North Dakota. Last season, Klabo averaged 19.0 points and 9.3 rebounds, both ranking in the top 60 of all Division I players. Her 189 free throws makes destroyed the school record by 45 while her 14 double-doubles paced the Big Sky Conference.

She is a two-time all-conference selection, earning first team accolades last year and a second team nod as a sophomore.

The 20 nominees for the Cheryl Miller Award include Syracuse’s Miranda Drummond and Iowa State’s Bridget Carleton, both of whom Klabo and the Fighting Hawks will play this season. Others named come from schools such as Duke, Maryland, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Oregon, Tennessee, Texas and Washington State, among others.

The Selection Committee for the Cheryl Miller Award is composed of top women’s college basketball personnel including media members, head coaches, sports information directors and Hall of Famers. By mid-February, the watch list of 20 players for the 2019 Cheryl Miller Award will be narrowed to just 10. In March, five finalists will be presented to Ms. Miller and the Hall of Fame’s selection committee. Fans will also have the opportunity to vote for their favorite finalist at www.hoophallawards.com.

The winner of the 2019 Cheryl Miller Small Forward Award will be revealed on an ESPN platform during the 2019 Women’s Final Four in Tampa, Florida. Additional awards being presented and recognized at the WBCA Convention include the Nancy Lieberman Point Guard Award, the Ann Meyers Drysdale Shooting Guard Award, the Katrina McClain Power Forward Award, and the Lisa Leslie Center Award. Also being awarded is the Wade Trophy, the sport’s oldest and most prestigious national player of the year award which is presented annually by the WBCA’s community of coaches to the best player in college women’s basketball.

North Dakota opens its 2018-19 schedule Sunday with the first of two exhibition games. UND will host Bemidji State for a 2:00 p.m. tip and will have Minnesota Crookston Tuesday for the final tuneup. The Fighting Hawks officially open the regular season Nov. 6 at Syracuse.

2019 Cheryl Miller Award Candidates
Mart’e Grays    DePaul
Leaonna Odom     Duke
Francesca Pan     Georgia Tech
Bridget Carleton    Iowa St
Erika Davenport    Marquette
Kaila Charles    Maryland
Sophie Cunningham    Missouri
Lexi Klabo     North Dakota
Courtney Woods    Northern Illinois
Jackie Young     Notre Dame
Ashanti Abshaw    Ohio St
Satou Sabally    Oregon
Miranda Drummond    Syracuse
Rennia Davis     Tennessee
Tia Wooten     Tennessee St.
Joyner Holmes    Texas
Jocelyn Willoughby    Virginia
Elisa Penna     Wake Forest
Borislava Hristova    Washington St.
Naomi Davenport    West Virginia

*Players can play their way onto and off of the list at any point in the 2018-19 season*

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