IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa women’s basketball sophomore Caitlin Clark was named a Nancy Lieberman Finalist, the Basketball Hall of Fame and Women’s Basketball Coaches Association announced Monday.
The Nancy Lieberman Award, in its 23rd year, recognizes the top point guard in women’s NCAA Division I college basketball. The award is given annually to a player who exhibits the floor leadership, playmaking and ball-handling skills of Class of 1996 Hall-of-Famer Nancy Lieberman. Clark is one of five athletes on the list and is joined by Northwestern’s Veronica Burton.
The Des Moines, Iowa, registered five triple-doubles this season, leading the country in most career triple-doubles by an active player with six. Clark’s six career triple-doubles ties former Hawkeye Sam Logic’s Big Ten record (2011-15) for most in a career and ties for the fifth most single season (5) and career (6) triple-doubles in NCAA Division I history.
In January, Clark joined the likes of Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Russell Westbrook, James Hardin, Luka Dončić and Giannis Antetokounmpo as the only NBA, WNBA, Division I men’s and women’s basketball to record back-to-back 30-point triple doubles since 2000. She is one of 10 women’s basketball players (15 times) to register back-to-back triple doubles in their careers — the only NCAA player (male or female) to do so with 30-plus points in the pair.
Clark broke the 1,000-career point barrier against Evansville in early January and became the fastest Division I player (men’s or women’s) to reach 1,500 career points over the last 20 seasons, reaching the feat in 56 games.
Against Penn State, Clark broke the Iowa single-game assist record, tallying 18 and tying the Big Ten record against a conference opponent in a regular season or Big Ten Tournament game. Clark is tied with Nebraska’s Rachel Theriot who had 18 assists against Minnesota on March 7, 2014 in the B1G Tournament.
Clark set a career-high 46 points against No. 6 Michigan, registering her 12th double-double of the season with 10 assists and breaking her third women’s basketball arena scoring record. She now holds the scoring records at Iowa’s Carver-Hawkeye Arena (44), Michigan’s Crisler Center (46) and Nebraska’s Pinnacle Bank Arena (39).
This season, the sophomore is averaging 27.4 points, 8.1 rebounds and 7.9 assists per game. She was named Big Ten Player of the Year and Big Ten Tournament MVP.