UTEP junior point guard Kelli Willingham has been tabbed to the 2013 Conference USA Women’s Basketball All-Academic Team, the league office revealed Thursday morning.
It marks the second straight year that Willingham, who sports a 3.78 cumulative GPA while pursuing a degree in kinesiology, has been so honored. In order to be eligible for the distinction nominees must hold a minimum 3.2 cumulative grade point average, be a starter or key reserve for their team and be a sophomore of academic standing.
“Kelli is an outstanding student-athlete who works very hard both in the classroom and on the court!” UTEP head coach Keitha Adams said. “We’re very proud of her today!”
A three-year starter, Willingham has started every game this season while leading the team in three-pointers made (54), assist-to-turnover ratio (1.3) and minutes per game (33.0). The native of DeSoto, Texas, is second on the team in assists per game (2.9) and total steals (30), in addition to being one of four Miners with at least 9.0 points per game (9.2).
Willingham has enjoyed a stellar career with the Orange and Blue, recently becoming just the third player in program history with at least 700 career points (789) and 300 career assists (300).
She is a two-time recipient of the C-USA Academic Medal (2011 & 2012), which requires a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.75.
UTEP will wrap up its regular season when it plays host to Tulane at 7:05 p.m. MST Friday. Senior Anete Steinberga will be honored before the game. The 2011-12 C-USA Championship team will be recognized in a special post-game ceremony, in addition to a senior video for Steinberga.