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March 28, 2012
DURHAM, N.C.-- For the first time in Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) history, a rookie from the league has been selected National Freshman of the Year by a vote of the United States Basketball Writers Association (USBWA) as Duke University freshman Elizabeth Williams received the award on Wednesday.
It marks the third day in a row the 6-3 center has received accolades as she was named to the Fresno Regional All-Tournament team on Monday and received Associated Press Third Team All-America on Tuesday.
Coming off a standout 2011-12 campaign where she averaged 14.0 points, 7.8 rebounds, 3.5 blocks, 1.6 assists and 1.5 steals, Williams has now received two National Freshman of the Year awards as ESPN.com also voted her the top rookie.
A native of Virginia Beach, Va., Williams posted one of the top freshman campaigns in league history as she notched a freshman record 116 blocked shots and ranked fourth nationally with a 3.5 per game average. She also became the first league freshman to be named ACC Defensive Player of the Year and only the third freshman to be voted to the All-ACC First Team.
Other honors the freshman received were ACC Defensive Player of the Year, ACC Rookie of the Year, All-ACC First Team, All-ACC Defensive Team, All-ACC Freshman Team, John R. Wooden Award finalist, WBCA Region II Nominee for WBCA All-America, All-ACC Academic Team and a Naismith Midseason Candidate for Player of the Year. Williams' nine ACC Rookie of the Week selections matched the league record set back in 1992-93. Her 259 rebounds on the season was one shy of matching the Duke single-season freshman record held by Chante Black. On Tuesday, Williams became the first Blue Devil rookie to be named Associated Press All-America.