MILWAUKEE (BIG EAST CONFERENCE) - Marquette University women's basketball senior guard Natisha Hiedeman has been unanimously selected as BIG EAST Player of the Year, the second straight season that a Marquette player has earned the accolade, the league office announced on Wednesday. Major awards and all-conference teams were selected by a vote of the BIG EAST head coaches who were not allowed to vote for their own players.
As well as garnering the league's top honor, Hiedeman was the lone unanimous selection on the All-BIG EAST First Team. Senior guard Allazia Blockton was also a major award winner as she picked up the BIG EAST Sixth-Woman Award, while classmates Erika Davenport and Amani Wilborn earned All-BIG EAST Second Team and All-BIG EAST Honorable Mention honors, respectively.
Hiedeman saved her finest season for her last as she emerged as a dominant force in the league with a BIG EAST-leading 13 20-point games this season, 11 of those coming in conference play. She surpassed the 30-point mark twice, including the highest scoring performance in BIG EAST action since 2017 when she exploded for 34 at Seton Hall on Feb. 17. Hiedeman was second in league play with 18.9 points per game and grabbed 6.1 boards, while dishing 3.9 assists and picking up 2.4 steals per game. She is just the second player in Marquette history to be named Player of the Year after Blockton earned the honor in 2017-18.
Blockton was injured in the first BIG EAST game of the season and missed the following five games before returning to action off the bench. She started in just five of the 13 league games she played in and averaged 11.0 points and 4.6 rebounds. As she enters post season play Blockton is second on the Golden Eagles with 14.1 points per game, ninth among all BIG EAST players. She was named BIG EAST Scholar-Athlete of the Year on Tuesday, becoming just the third player in conference history to repeat the recognition.
Davenport earns the third All-BIG EAST honor in her career after averaging a double-double with 12.5 points and 11.4 boards in BIG EAST play. She took down double digit rebounds in nine conference games this season, including a career-best 23 boards against Georgetown. She suffered a season-ending knee injury on Feb. 22 and finishes fourth all-time in the BIG EAST in rebounding (625) and 13th in conference field goal percentage (57.2) and is just the fourth Marquette player to have over 1,000 career points and 1,000 career rebounds.
For the second year in-a-row, Wilborn was named to the All-BIG EAST Honorable Mention team. She is the BIG EAST leader among active players with 455 total career assists and averaged 13.0 points per game in conference action, while shooting at a 47.1 percent clip. Wilborn recorded 20+ points in four league games this year and notched double figures in 12 of the 18 BIG EAST games.
As the 2018-19 regular season champions and BIG EAST Tournament No. 1 seed, Marquette will open the postseason on Sunday, March 10 against the winner of No. 8 Seton Hall and No. 9 St. John's at Wintrust Arena in Chicago. Tip-off is slated for Noon CT on FS2.