Saint Joseph's Cloud Named to Nancy Lieberman Award Watch List

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. - Saint Joseph's junior guard Natasha Cloud has been named to the watch list of 20 candidates for the 2014 Nancy Lieberman Award, officials from Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame announced on Wednesday.


The award recognizes the top point guard in women’s NCAA Division I college basketball. Candidates exhibit the floor leadership, play-making and ball-handling skills of Hall of Famer Nancy Lieberman.


Helping the Hawks to a 12-4 start this season, Cloud has proven to be one of the top guards both in the Atlantic 10 and in the nation on a daily basis. The 6-foot-guard currently leads the conference and is second nationally in assists per game (8.1), ranks second in the A-10 in assists-to-turnover ratio (2.1), sixth in minutes per game (34.4) and is averaging a career-high 10.9 points per contest.


Voted to the A-10 Preseason All-Defensive Team and All-Conference Third Team, Cloud has continually filled the stat sheet for the Hawks, leading the team in assists 13 times, steals seven times, rebounding five times, and scoring once. Named the 2013 Most Oustanding Player of the Atlantic 10 Championship after leading Saint Joseph's to its first conference title since 1999, Cloud has averaged 9.9 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.6 assists per game since suiting up as a Hawk to start the 2012-13 season. A transfer from Maryland, the Broomall, Pa., native has helped guide SJU to a 35-13 record since suiting up in Crimson and Gray.


The Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame became the new host of the Nancy Lieberman Award in October 2013 after the Rotary Club of Detroit managed it for several years.


“We are honored to have the opportunity to award a young athlete that shows the same sort of dedication to the game of basketball as the legendary Nancy Lieberman,” said John L. Doleva, President and CEO of the Basketball Hall of Fame. “This award is our chance to recognize some truly extraordinary point guards in women’s college basketball.”


The Hall of Fame appointed a premier Selection Committee made up of top college basketball personnel including media members, head coaches, sports information directors and Hall of Famers to review the candidates. The list will be narrowed down to a final 20 in February, then final five by March. The Lieberman Award winner will be announced during Final Four weekend activities.


“It’s amazing to be able to have my name associated with some of the best point guards and most well-rounded female athletes at the college level,” Lieberman said. “This is the first year the award is hosted by the Hall of Fame and I think candidates will be even more aware of how prestigious this honor is.”


Previous winners of the Nancy Lieberman Award include last year’s recipient Skylar Diggins (Notre Dame), Sue Bird (Connecticut), Renee Montgomery (Connecticut), Diana Taurasi (Connecticut), Lindsey Harding (Duke), Courtney Vandersloot (Gonzaga), Temeka Johnson (LSU), Kristi Toliver (Maryland), Ivory Latta (North Carolina), and Andrea Riley (Oklahoma State).


About the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame Located in Springfield, Massachusetts, the Birthplace of Basketball, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame promotes and preserves the game of basketball at every level – professional, collegiate, men and women.

- SJU -

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