In a previous
article, we revealed our thirty Honor Roll finalists for this
last school year of 2011-2012. The criteria for selecting each
year’s 10 Honor Roll awardees are as follow:
“Each academic year, The Bootleg's Honor Roll will recognize
the top ten Stanford student- athletes who have performed at an
exceptional level, with athletic accomplishments that are both
extraordinary and inspirational. While achieving athletic
success, these athletes should also have displayed uncommon
leadership, sportsmanship and respect towards their fellow
teammates and opponents. Finally, these honorees' performances
and actions should also demonstrate their love for their
particular sport as well as their school pride, the famed
“Spirit of Stanford.”
We now announce our five female winners.
• Nnemkadi Ogwumike, basketball
Nneka averaged a double-double in her senior year at
Stanford with 22.5 points and 10.2 rebounds per game. With the
senior Ogwumike the team’s unquestioned leader, Stanford went
35-2, won its 12th straight Pac-12 title and made its fifth
straight Final Four. Ogwumike was the consensus No. 2 player in
the country to Britney Griner, and fans voted her Stanford’s
female athlete of the year for the second straight season. The No.
1 overall pick of the WNBA Draft (L.A. Sparks), Nneka leaves the
Farm on the strength of an 809-point season. That’s a school
record which becomes all the more impressive when you think about
the names Nneka displaced in one of women’s college basketball’s
most storied programs.
• Nicole Gibbs, tennis
What’s better than one national title? Well, of course, two.
Though Gibbs couldn’t lead the women’s tennis program, a former
dynasty that has taken a step back in recent years, to a team
title, you can’t exactly blame the rising senior. She became the
third-ever player to win the NCAA singles and doubles tournaments
in the same season, becoming Stanford’s first singles champion
since 2004. (Honorable mention goes to Mallory Burdette, Gibbs’
doubles teammate and, after losing to Gibbs in the first
all-Stanford final in 11 years, singles national runner-up.) Gibbs
went 21-2 in duals single matches, and 18-2 in doubles, and looks
primed for a similarly dominant senior year.
• Kiley Neushul, water polo
No Annika Dries? No Melissa Seidemann? No Maggie Steffens? No
problem. Stanford water polo’s biggest names were busy training
with the U.S. national team this past season, en route to bringing
home the gold in a spirited London tournament. Only problem was
that John Tanner and the Cardinal had a national title to defend,
but Neushul, a true freshman, ensured that wooden plaque would
stay in Palo Alto with relatively little drama. On the strength of
her team-best 58 goals, the Cardinal went 26-2 overall and 7-0 in
league play. She shone when the spotlight was brightest too,
scoring a decisive hat trick in the Cardinal’s 6-4 national title
win over %%MATCH_2%%. For her efforts, Neushul was the coaches’
association’s national player of the year, and won the Peter J.
Cutino Award, the sport’s Heisman.
• and 5. Teresa Noyola and Lindsay Taylor, soccer
How can you mention one of these 2012 graduates without the other?
What’s undisputed is that Stanford won its first-ever national
title (and made three straight NCAA Finals) on the strength of its
two stars, both products of the Peninsula. What’s unanswerable is
who deserves more of the credit.
The Women’s Pro Soccer league couldn’t distinguish between the
two, taking Taylor No. 6 and Noyola No. 7 in its 2012 draft
(though the league has since folded). Neither could awards
committees, as Noyola won the Hermann Award, the sport’s Heisman,
while Taylor was Soccer America’s Player of the Year.
Taylor was the Athletic Department’s Conference Female Athlete of
the Year, while Noyola was the Department’s Most Outstanding
Female Senior and the sport’s national scholar-athlete of the
Noyola, a 5-foot-3 midfielder, connected on a header in the 53rd
minute for the only goal in this past year’s national title game,
a 1-0 win over %%MATCH_3%%, in what the Athletic Department would later
deem the most defining moment of the year. She leaves the Farm a
three-time first-team All-American and second in school history
with 40 assists and ninth with 102 points. Meanwhile, a 5-foot-7
forward, Taylor’s 53 goals, 27 assists, 133 points and 349 shots
rank fourth, seventh, fifth and first, respectively in school
Poetically, both players are tied for first in appearances on the
Farm (102 games). Most importantly, both helped bring home the
Cardinal’s first-ever women’s soccer national title. The Bootleg
wishes them and our other female Honor Roll winners all the best
in the years to come, and thanks them heartily for the wonderful
memories of the past months and years.
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