INDIANAPOLIS (USBWA) – For the season’s third weekly women’s awards from the U.S.Basketball Writers Association, for games ending Sunday, Dec. 25, Villanova senior forward Maddy Siegrist is the Ann Meyers Drysdale National Player of the Week, Oregon forward Grace VanSlooten is the Tamika Catchings national freshman recipient and Ohio State is the team of the week.
The awards, organized under Mel Greenberg, the USBWA Vice President for women’s basketball, are drawn from the weekly conference citations as well as at-large additions.
Each week awards go to the Ann Meyers Drysdale Women’s national player, the organization’s Tamika Catchings freshman player, and the USBWA’s women’s team of the week.
Siegrist, a 6-1 senior forward from Poughkeepsie, N.Y., scored 31 points and grabbed 11 rebounds in an 81-55 win over visiting La Salle that gave Villanova its eighth straight Philadelphia Big Five title. On Monday, the reigning Big East Player of the Year and past USBWA recipient, joined past greats Rebecca Lobo (UConn) and Angel McCoughtry) with a career record 12th weekly conference honor. Second in the nation in scoring with a 28.0 points per game average, she has reached the 30-point mark five times this season. In the win over the Explorers, Siegrist collectedher sixth double-double.
VanSlooten, a 6-3 freshman forward from Toledo, Ohio, averaged 27.5 points on 60.0 percent shooting with 7.5 rebounds and 2.5 blocks against then-No. 17 Arkansas and No. 3 Ohio State at the San Diego Invitational. She equaled a career high 26 points in Oregon’s win over the Razorbacks in the tourney opener and then scored 29, shooting 11-of-19 against the Buckeyes. On Monday she joined former UCLA star Nina Fields, and former Ducks star Sabrina Ionescu as the third player to sweep both Pac-12 weekly player and frosh honors dating to the first year of frosh honors in 2012-13.
Ohio State has been third in the weekly Associated Press Women’s Poll for several weeks behind South Carolina and Stanford and last week in claiming the San Diego Invitational title the Buckeyes rallied late in overtime to down American Athletic Conference favorite South Florida and then topped Oregon. On Monday, OSU coach Kevin McGuff made his 150th appearance overall and 100th with his current team in the AP rankings, previously doing so at Xavier.
Since the 1987-88 season, the USBWA has named a women’s National Player of the Year. For the 2012-13 season, the national and weekly player award became named for Hall of Famer and former UCLA All-American Ann Meyers Drysdale while the national and weekly freshman award is being given in the name of former Tennessee all-American Tamika Catchings, which was applied at the start of the 2019-20 season.
At the conclusion of the regular season, the USBWA will name finalists for both individual awards, which is voted on by the entire membership of the USBWA.
The winners of the 2023 Ann Meyers Drysdale National Player of the Year and Tamika Catchings National Freshman of the Year will be announced and presented at the USBWA’s annual awards event on site at the 2023 NCAA Women's Final Four in Dallas.
The U.S. Basketball Writers Association was formed in 1956 at the urging of then-NCAA Executive Director Walter Byers. With some 900 members worldwide, it is one of the most influential organizations in college basketball. It has selected a women's All-America team since the 1996-97 season. For more information on the USBWA and its award programs, contact executive director Malcolm Moran at 814-574-1485.