May 21, 2003
SANTA CLARA, Calif. - Senior All-WCC forward Kendra Rhea was named the team's most valuable player, one of many awards handed out at the Santa Clara University women's basketball annual banquet Sunday evening at Mondo Burrito Restaurant.
First-year head coach Michelle Bento hosted the affair, set to honor the team's graduating seniors and to thank the Bronco fans and supporters for a memorable season, in which SCU advanced to its sixth straight postseason appearance and finished with a 20-11 record.
Rhea, the West Coast Conference Tournament MVP, received the honor as voted by her teammates. The Lakeside native earned honorable mention All-WCC honors while starting all 31 contests for the Broncos. She finished the season ranked fourth in the WCC in rebounds (7.8), sixth in assists (3.29), 12th in blocked shots (0.71) and 25th in scoring (8.5).
Sophomore guard Kayla Huss was named the team's Most Improved Player. The Everett, Wash., native earned first team All-WCC honors while starting at point for the Broncos. A back injury slowed her down toward the end of the season, but she finished as a leader, ranking 10th nationally in three-point field goal percentage. She was atop the conference standings in assists (5.62), while ranking second in three-point field goal percentage (.432), third in three-point field goals made (1.97), fourth in assist/turnover ratio (1.23) and 12th in scoring (11.0). She was named to the WCC Championship All-Tournament Team to close the season.
Senior Jennifer Bradley was awarded the Christine Silvernail Award, a recognition given to the athlete that "best embodies what it means to be a Bronco." The award was established three seasons ago, in honor of Silvernail, the 1994 West Coast Conference Player of the Year, after she passed away as a result of a car accident. Katie Pursley, Annie Garrison and Caroline Gruening are past award recipients.
Rhea repeated her honor as the squad's Best Defensive Player, and shared that award with sophomore guard Megan Nelson. Rhea was also the recipient of the Coaches Award, while fellow senior Tammy Annas was presented with the Everything Award. Senior Julie Butler received a Special Recognition Award.
Bento also took a moment to thank a few very supportive fans: Nick Livak, Gary Hong, Steve Dutra, Bob Sorrells and the George Fota family.
Achievement awards for statistical category leaders were also presented, and the evening ended with three highlight videos that captured the team's season. The team's graduating seniors are Annas, Bradley, Butler, Courtney Cushing and Rhea.
2002-03 Santa Clara Basketball AwardsMost Outstanding Player Kendra Rhea
Most Improved Player Kayla Huss
Best Defensive Player Kendra Rhea, Megan Nelson
Coaches Award Kendra Rhea
Everything Award Tammy Annas
Christine Silvernail Award Jennifer Bradley
Special Recognition Award Julie Butler