Less than a week after being nominated for NCAA Woman of the Year by the Southern Utah University athletic department, former Thunderbird Rebecca Cardenas has now been nominated as one of two conference nominees by the Big Sky Conference.
Sacramento State’s Lauren Wong is the other nominee from the conference.
Rooted in Title IX, the NCAA Woman of the Year Award was established in 1991 to recognize graduating female student-athletes who have exhausted their eligibility and distinguished themselves in academics, athletics, service and leadership throughout their collegiate careers.
Conference offices select up to two nominees each from their pool of member school nominees. The Woman of the Year selection committee, made up of representatives from the NCAA membership, will choose the top 30 honorees — 10 from each division.
From the top 30, the Woman of the Year selection committee will determine the top three honorees in each division and announce nine finalists.
The NCAA Committee on Women’s Athletics then will choose the 2020 NCAA Woman of the Year, who will be named this fall.
Wrapping up her basketball career last March, Cardenas will go down as one of the best players in the history of the women’s program at Southern Utah.
After earning All-Conference Honorable Mention honors following her junior season, Cardenas made a massive statement to the Big Sky Conference during her senior campaign.
Cardenas ended the season as the Big Sky’s Defensive Player of the Year, along with being the league’s leading scorer, and earned First Team honors in the process.
During her senior season she became Southern Utah’s all-time leader in steals with 301 during her career. She also finished with 494 career assists, which was enough to put her second all-time in that category.
Along with those career accolades, she also finished fifth all-time in scoring (1,296 points) and seventh all-time in games played (116).
In the classroom, Cardenas was a member of the Big Sky All-Academic Team all four years she was eligible, and completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Communication this past spring.
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To read the original article published on July 20, click here.
Story by: Kyle Birnbrauer
Photos courtesy of: suutbirds.com