NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – The Hampton Roads Sports Commission (HRSC) recognized Hampton University senior forward Keiara Avant as the top offensive player in women’s basketball in Hampton Roads on Wednesday night during the Celebration of College Athletics Awards Dinner.
Avant (Chesapeake, Va.) was named the MEAC Player of the Year, becoming the first Lady Pirate ever to win that honor. She averaged 16.2 points and 10.1 rebounds per game in leading the Lady Pirates to a 28-6 record and their fourth straight MEAC Tournament championship this past season.
She was 10th in the NCAA with 20 double-doubles on the season, and Avant led the MEAC in rebounding. Avant was also third in the conference in field goal percentage at .478 and fifth in the MEAC in scoring.
Avant scored in double figures 30 times, including in Hampton’s last 23 games – and she poured in a career-high 32 points at Morgan State on Feb. 2. She averaged 14.3 points and 10.0 rebounds per game in the MEAC Tournament, earning the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player honor.
The four-time MEAC Player of the Week and two-time MEAC Defensive Player of the Week also grabbed double-digit rebounds 20 times this past season.
She was also named First Team All-State by the Richmond Times-Dispatch.
The HRSC hosted the Celebration of College Athletics Awards Dinner for the second straight year, to recognize and celebrate the football, men’s basketball, and women’s basketball programs at The Apprentice School, Christopher Newport, Hampton, Norfolk State, Old Dominion, Virginia Wesleyan, and William & Mary.
The Player of the Year awards were presented by Vandeventer Black LLP and given to the top offensive and defensive players in each of the three sports. After the schools submitted nominees, a panel of local sports experts chose the different winners.
Jim Ducibella, former sports writer for The Virginian-Pilot, was the keynote speaker.
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