OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (goleathernecks.com) — Western Illinois senior guard Emily Clemens was named a top-10 finalist for the 2017-18 Senior CLASS Award.
The finalists were chosen by national media from the list of 30 men's candidates and 30 women's candidates announced in January. Nationwide fan voting begins immediately to help select the winner, and fans are encouraged to submit votes online at the Senior CLASS Award website through March 19. Fan votes will be combined with those of the media and Division I head coaches to determine the winners. The Senior CLASS Award recipients will be announced during the 2018 NCAA Men's Final Four ® and NCAA Women's Final Four ® .
"Emily has received a ton of recognition this year, but being a finalist for the Senior CLASS Award is probably the biggest one," said head coach JD Gravina. "Making this list just shows how much more there is to Emily Clemens than just being a basketball player."
An acronym for Celebrating Loyalty and Achievement for Staying in School, the Senior CLASS Award honors the attributes of senior student-athletes in four areas: community, classroom, character and competition. The award program is designed exclusively for college seniors who are utilizing their complete athletic eligibility, remaining committed to their university and pursuing the many rewards a senior season can bring. Kansas City-based Premier Sports Management manages the award.
Clemens' achievements this season include the following: The Summit League Preseason Player of the Year, Summit League Player of the Week (four times), espnW National Player of the Week (Dec. 26), preseason watch list candidate for the Nancy Lieberman Award, The Summit League all-time record holder for career assists and free throws made, the program's all-time leading scorer and Summit League Female Athlete of the Month for December. She was also the HERO Sports Hero of the Week (Feb. 3), and named to the NCAA Women's Basketball Starting Five weekly honor once this season. She was also named as an attendee to the NCAA Career in Sports Forum, which is held in Indianapolis this year.
She recently earned her bachelor's degree in marketing and is currently in her first semester of graduate school at Western Illinois studying sport management.
For more information on each of the finalists, visit seniorCLASSaward.com.
Women's Basketball Finalists:
Ariel Atkins, Texas
Lexie Brown, Duke
Tyra Buss, Indiana
Emily Clemens, Western Illinois
Rebecca Greenwell, Duke
Delaney Hodgins, Eastern Washington
Kaylee Jensen, Oklahoma State
Jackie Kemph, Saint Louis
Victoria Vivians, Mississippi State
Gabby Williams, UConn
ABOUT THE SUMMIT LEAGUE
Through 35 years of Division I athletics, The Summit League features men's basketball teams from eight member institutions: Denver, Fort Wayne, North Dakota State, Omaha, Oral Roberts, South Dakota, South Dakota State and Western Illinois with North Dakota becoming an official member for the 2018-19 season. In 2016-17, The Summit League raised its RPI for the third consecutive year, finishing with an all-time best No. 11 ranking. The Summit League has sent at least three teams to the postseason nine straight years with three postseason tournament semifinal appearances the last four years, while recording the nation's best Division I winning percentage improvement since 2009-10. Called "March's Best-Kept Secret" by USA Today, The Summit League Basketball Championships annually ranks as one of the most attended Division I conference tournaments. This season's event returns to the Denny Sanford PREMIER Center in Sioux Falls, S.D., March 3-6, 2018. For more information about the league, "See The Summit" by visiting www.thesummitleague.org and following Summit League Basketball on Twitter @summithoops.