It’s been an exciting season, with this league nearly doubling in size since it’s innaugural season and I hope it continues to grow. There is so much talent in this league it’s hard to recognize it all, and if I didn’t you can simply blame Tibbs. All award recipients will be receiving a towelette moistened with a facial imprint of my sweaty mugg on it. Best of luck to the remaining teams in the playoffs…. Meet me on the court, it’s goin down…
Most Valuable Player ñ Kellie Fournier, Ladies First. Kellie, baby, this oneís all yours. Leading the league in rebounds, blocks, offense and defense itís hard to make a case otherwise. Without you, Ladies First is good but with you they are hands down unstoppable. Kellieís unassuming and carefree demeanor is what makes her so deadly. Her height is nearly impossible to guard underneath and her sniper-like range makes her lethal from the outside as well. Itís just too bad this was her last season with us, but what better way to send her off than with the most boastful honor we can give. Her value and contribution to this league cannot be measured and she will be greatly missed. Best of luck with everything, kick some bball ass down in DC!!!
Runners Up: Nicole Warder, Caitlin Vestal, Jess Morgan, Callie Dubrow
Rookie of the Year ñ Nicole Warder, Bayside Tigers. This is one Tiger that had just a lil bit more bite than all the others. Warder rocked this league as hard as she rocked her opponents. On a team of all rookies, she shined. Camping out at the peak of the player-rater throughout the season, Warder showed up weekly and performed consistently, scoring the majority of her teams points, leading the league in steals and in the top 5 of the assists and points categories this girl is LEGIT. Most deadly is her 3 point range which she can fire off with the pressure of a defender in her face. Speaking on behalf of CAC Women, we can only hope that she will stick around one way or another because she helps to raise the bar and the level of play to new heights, and I hope to covertly draft her onto my 4v4 teamóso donít pay too much attention to her name, but expect the marketability of it to increase 10 fold in upcoming seasons.
Runners Up: Nicole LaRoque, Jess Powers
Defensive Player of the Year ñ Nicole LaRoque, CAC Blockers. Being the best defensive player doesnít necessarily mean grabbing the most rebounds, blocking the most shot attempts or even coming up with the most snags, itís about hustle & heart. Iíve watched and played against The Rock and she is a defensive menace. Her strength and athleticism give her an advantage over most, but sheís also very quick and possesses an exceeding level of determination to shut her player downóIíve seen it gleaming in her eyes, and Iíve personally felt it in her aggression on the court. Physical, but in control Nicole is difficult to get by, practically impossible to grab rebounds around and is solid as a, well, ROCK. Adding some depth to the CAC Blockers, sheís been an invaluable asset to their team, particularly in the occasional absence of Conroy and Vestal
Runners Up: Jess Hurt, Jess Morgan, Miriam Godfrey
Unsung Hero ñ Jess Hurt, Pink Ninja Assassins. A lot of players might not notice Jess because sheís quiet. She gets the job done with her nose to the grindstone, no complaints, nothing flashy just straight up hard work. Being her teammate I feel confident in her both defensively and offensively to stop opposing teamís toughest players or to pull up for the perfect baseline jay after she busts it to get open. She hustles more than anyone on the court, always sprinting after fast breaks, offensively AND defensively. Most of all, she has no fear and remains un-intimidated while goin about her business, she will take anyone on and guard anyone and does not get enough credit for it. So, hereís to you Jess! Thanks for being the quiet hero of the Pink Ninjas.
Runners Up: Kristin Fountain, Erin Johson, Lauren Fico
6th Woman of the Year ñ Kristen Hurov, Pink Ninja Assassins. In this league, most teams didnít even have the same 5 people to put on the court every week, never mind a sub, but the Pink Ninjaís always found strength in numbers, and more so strength in Kristen. A bit soft spoken, and one of the kindest people I know, Kristen often sits the start of games to let Lu and J-Mo dominate. But, when she takes the court she integrates seamlessly into the Ninjaís offense, and hits the defensive boards hard. Her swat is dangerous and so is that reverse lay-up she so fondly uses to abuse her opponents. She could easily start no doubt, but her humility and maturity make her one of the best relievers in the game. Kristen Hurov, youíre aight, girl!!
Runner Up: April Harrington
Most Improved ñ Kristin Fountain, CAC Blockers. Dude, I donít know if yaíll have noticed or what but this girl is siiiiick. Often overshadowed by her all-star teammates, Moonboots has some fantastic moves under the hoop and is another one of those players who quietly gets the job done. She can turn left, spin right, pull up while youíre in her face and hit that close range more often than I can hit the underside of the backboard (which sadly, in my case, is a LOT). It was really in Vestalís absence that Boots has been able to showcase her talents, being the tall girl on the inside. Her play is probably the most telling of whether or not the CAC Blockers will get the win, if she is ON then itís lights out for opponents, and given their 1st place seat in this league, itís safe to say that Boots has been on this season.
Runners up: Irene McSweeney, Melissa Roller
GM of the Year: Erin Johnson, Ladies First. There is no doubt in my mind that player for player this Ladies First team is by far the best in the league. Sure, teams have been able to beat them, as on any given Thursday this is possible, but I think itís going to be a long road to the finals for anyone who has the task of beating these girls. Erin made the magic happen finding a solid group of once college ballers who could all consistently be available to play on Thursdays. Ladies First have had problems with attendance in the past, but this season, no longer. It will be interesting to see how they fair without league MVP Kellie Fournier, but they made it through round #1 no problem. Next they face the Pink Ninjaís who have beat them before and it will probably be one of the best games of the season. Congrats, Erin, for keeping the competitive edge of this league sharp and organizing such a talented group of lady ballers!!
Runners Up: Kristen Hurov, Caitlin Vestal, Valley Bulldogs Rep.
1st Team: Caitlin Vestal, Nicole LaRoque, Kellie Fournier, Erin Jonshon, Jess Warder
2nd Team: Cat Brady, Callie Dubrow, Luana Bothelo, Ashley Britton, Jess Morgan
3rd Team: Kristin Fountain, Jen Lawless, Laura Jasinski, Glenda Cancel, Erin Conroy
All Defensive Team: Kellie Fournier, Nicole LaRoque, Nicole Warder, Miriam Godfrey, Caitlin Vestal
All Sniper Team: ëCause these girls can shoot the lights outóAshley Britton, Cat Brady, Nicole Warder, Candi Oshodi, Laura Shine
All Hustle Team: The girls that make the heart of this league beatóLauren Fico, Jess Hurt, Caitlin Casey, Nikkie Leckie
Honorable Mentionsó Jess Powers, Danielle Fitzpatrick, Allison Love, Sarah Dickens, Nikki Velez
JBerr Award: Lauren Fico, Valley Bulldogs. Since Iím giving this award out, itís an award that captures my essence on the basketball court. An integral asset to the team not for her skills but for her heart and hustle. Lauren Fico can best be described as a hustler. Sheís not afraid to get her nose dirty on D, she drives hard to the hoop with incredible speed and busts her ass in general on both ends of the court. Iíve watched her play and she is a motivational and inspirational leader on her team, her players look to her when they need a push. Without her on the Bulldogs a certain Spark would be missing. Thanks for playing so hard Lauren, it really made a difference.