CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (UI Release) - University of Illinois senior forward Karisma Penn was named to the list of top 30 candidates for the Naismith Women's College Player of the Year Award, announced Wednesday by the Atlanta Tipoff Club. Penn has had a remarkable season to this point, as she is the only player to rank in the top five in the Big Ten in scoring, rebounding, steals, blocked shots and field-goal percentage. She is one of six Big Ten players on the list. The list will be narrowed to four in late March, with the winner being announced on April 8.
Penn is averaging 19.1 points, 9.8 rebounds, 2.9 steals and 2.2 blocks per game, and has started all of Illinois' 26 games. She has led the Illini to a 16-10 record with a 9-5 mark in the Big Ten that currently stands tied for third in the conference standings. Illinois has won six of its last eight games and is in pursuit of its first NCAA Tournament berth since 2003.
Penn is the only post player in the top 10 in the Big Ten in scoring (fourth), steals (second) and minutes played (35.8, ninth), and she ranks in the top 35 in the nation in scoring (34th), blocks (28th), steals (31st) and field-goal percentage (33rd).
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