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Breana Bacon | | February 26, 2018

Naismith Watch List narrowed to 10 semifinalists

Samuelson vs. Durr shootout

The Atlanta Tipoff Club announced the 10 semifinalists in consideration for the 2018 Naismith Women’s College Player of the Year on Monday. 

The list of players that remain from the previous watch list includes UCLA point guard Jordin Canada, who earlier this season became the first Pac-12 women's basketball player to score 1,800 points and dish out 700 assists in her career and is the  No. 10 Bruins' all-time leader in assists. Joining Canada is Oregon guard Sabrina Ionescu, who broke a Division I record with her eighth triple-double back in December. 

Also making the list is Baylor’s dominant center Kalani Brown. Brown leads No. 3 Baylor to a 26-1 record, losing only to UCLA on the road, and to the top of the Big 12 standings. Brown is second in the nation in field-goal percentage at 66.9 percent, right behind Oregon's Ruthy Hebard's 67 percent. 

Victoria Vivians of No. 2 Mississippi State remains on the list, leading the Bulldogs in scoring this season as her team remains undefeated and at the top of the SEC.

UConn has two players in the final 10 in Katie Lou Samuelson and Gabby Williams.

Named in honor of Dr. James Naismith, the creator of the game of basketball, the first Naismith trophy was awarded in 1969 to UCLA’s Lew Alcindor, later known as Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. The Citizen Naismith Women’s Player of the Year Award was first given to Anne Donovan of Old Dominion University in 1983. Former all-time leading scorer and Washington guard Kelsey Plum is the 2017 Citizen Naismith Trophy winner. 

Name School Class Position Conference
Kalani Brown Baylor Junior Center Big 12
Jordin Canada UCLA Senior Guard Pac-12
Asia Durr Louisville Junior Guard ACC
Sabrina Ionescu Oregon Sophomore Guard Pac-12
Kelsey Mitchell Ohio State Senior Guard Big Ten
Arike Ogunbowale Notre Dame Junior Guard ACC
Katie Lou Samuelson UConn Junior Guard/Forward AAC
Victoria Vivians Mississippi State Senior Guard SEC
Gabby Williams UConn Senior Forward AAC
A'ja Wilson South Carolina Senior Forward SEC

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