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ATLANTA – Virginia senior guard Monica Wright (Woodbridge, Va.) is one of the top 30 midseason candidates for the Naismith Trophy presented by AT&T. The Naismith Trophy is one of the most prestigious national basketball awards and is given annually to the women’s college basketball player of the year. This year, the award will be presented at the NCAA Women’s Final Four in San Antonio, Texas.

The list was voted on by the Atlanta Tipoff Club’s Board of Selectors, comprised of leading basketball journalists from around the country. The board based its criteria on player performances this season.

Wright leads UVa and the Atlantic Coast Conference by averaging 22.7 points per game. The Preseason Player of the Year in the ACC, she was also named an Associated Press Preseason All-American. Her 3.6 steals per game also lead the ACC, and she has totaled a league-best six 30-point games. Her 39 points at Boston College (Jan. 21) is the highest scoring total of an ACC player this year, and her 10 steals vs. Liberty (Dec. 29) is also a league-best.

In 27 games this year, Wright has scored in double digits in 26 contests and scored at least 20 points on 18 occasions.

Wright is one of three ACC players on the top 30 list. Jasmine Thomas of Duke and Shenise Johnson of Miami are the others.

Beginning March 22, AT&T wireless customers – and sports fans on other wireless networks – will be able to text their votes for the player of their choice. Fans will be eligible to cast their vote for the winner until 11:59 p.m. EDT on Saturday, April 3, 2010. AT&T is making the voting open to other wireless carriers, allowing even more fans to participate. Other wireless carriers must opt-in for their subscribers to participate. Standard messaging rates apply.

2010 Naismith Women’s Midseason Candidates

Name, School, Pos., Cl.
Jayne Appel, Stanford, C, Sr.
Ashley Barlow, Notre Dame, G, Sr.
Tina Charles, Connecticut, C, Sr.
Alysha Clark, Middle Tennessee, F, Sr.
Elena Delle Donne, Delaware, F/G, Fr.
Dawn Evans, James Madison, G, Jr.
Tyra Grant, Penn State, G, Sr.
Alexis Gray-Lawson, California, G, Sr.
Kelsey Griffin, Nebraska, F, Sr.
Brittney Griner, Baylor, F/C, Fr.
Amber Harris, Xavier, F, Jr.
Allison Hightower, LSU, G, Sr.
Ashley Houts, Georgia, G, Sr.
Shenise Johnson, Miami, F, So.
Jantel Lavender, Ohio State, C, Jr.
Gabriela Marginean, Drexel, F, Sr.
Danielle McCray, Kansas, F/G, Sr.
Maya Moore, Connecticut, F, Jr.
Kayla Pedersen, Stanford, F, Jr.
Ta’Shia Phillips, Xavier, C, Jr.
Samantha Prahalis, Ohio State, G, So.
Andrea Riley, Oklahoma State, G, Sr.
Danielle Robinson, Oklahoma, G, Jr.
Jenna Smith, Illinois, C, Sr.
Da’Shena Stevens, St. John’s, F, So.
Shekinna Stricklen, Tennessee, F/G, So.
Jasmine Thomas, Duke, G, Jr.
Bianca Thomas, Ole Miss, G, Sr.
Courtney Vandersloot, Gonzaga, G, Jr.
Monica Wright, Virginia, G, Sr.

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