Four ACC Student-Athletes Garner AP All-America Accolades
March 27, 2012
GREENSBORO, N.C. – Maryland’s Alyssa Thomas (1st team), Duke’s Elizabeth Williams (3rd), and Miami’s Shenise Johnson (2nd) and Riquna Williams (3rd) were named to The Associated Press’ Women’s Basketball All-America team, announced Tuesday. The four student-athletes recognized were the most for any conference, ahead of the two players that were honored in the Big 12, Big East, Pac-12, and SEC.
Thomas, who is only the second underclassman to claim ACC Player of the Year honors, leads the Terrapins in scoring (17.2 ppg) and steals (56) and is second on the team in rebounds (8.0 rpg) and assists (110). The Harrisburg, Pa., native led the Terrapins to a conference championship and was named the Tournament MVP. She becomes the fourth Terrapin to earn AP All-America honors and the second to be named to the first team.
"This is such an honor to be named an AP All-American as a sophomore because there are so many great players in the country," said Thomas.
Johnson improved on her third team showing from last year with second team honors in 2012. The native of Henrietta, N.Y., became only the second player in Division I history to record 2,000 career points, 1,000 rebounds, 500 assists, and 400 steals, and finishes her career ranked in the top 20 all-time in the ACC in eight different categories.
“I am really excited to be recognized along with this fine group of young ladies,” said Johnson. “This is a team sport and I consider this honor a reflection of all the hard work that my teammates, coaches and I have put into being the best team we could possibly be.”
The ACC Rookie of the Year and a nine-time ACC Rookie of the Week, Duke’s Elizabeth Williams is just the third freshman in league history to be named to the All-ACC first team. She ranks fourth nationally with 3.5 blocks per game and owns the ACC freshman record for blocks in a season with 116. Williams also became the first league freshman to be named ACC Defensive Player of the Year. Her 116 blocked shots are more than 217 Division I women’s basketball teams. Offensively, she led the Blue Devils in scoring at 14 points per game while pulling down 7.8 rebounds per contest.
"It’s truly an honor and a blessing to be named third team Associated Press All America, especially as a freshman," commented Williams. "Our team did some great things this season, and I could not have received any of my honors without them, my coaches, and the great leadership of our seniors Shay [Selby] and Kathleen [Sheer]."
Miami’s Riquna Williams reached the 2,000-point plateau for her career while scoring over 30 points on two occasions this season. She dropped a career-best 36 in a win over No. 11 Rutgers and later in the season, tied a career-high with eight three-pointers on her way to 34 points in a win over No. 5 Maryland. Those performances were the top two scoring outings among any ACC player this season. The Pahokee, Fla., native ranked second behind Johnson on the team in scoring at 16.6 points per game.