LOS ANGELES, California (June 5, 2012) --- The key player in a historic sweep, Stanford University’s Nicole Gibbs has been named the 2012 Honda Sports Award recipient for tennis. Gibbs bested teammate Mallory Burdette for the 2012 NCAA singles title, then joined up with Burdette to win the collegiate doubles--the only time in the men’s or women’s game that players have faced each other in a final and then teamed up for the doubles title match. Gibbs’ selection by the Collegiate Women Sports Awards program recognizes her as the country’s top female athlete in her sport.
Gibbs, a two-time All-American and Stanford sophomore, became only the third Cardinal to acquire singles and doubles titles in the same season. The doubles victory was the third consecutive championship for the school. In the match against Burdette, which lasted three hours, Gibbs came back from a first-set loss and deficits of 4-1 and 5-2 to become the first Stanford player to win the NCAA singles title since 2004 and the 15th in school history.
A graduate of the Crossroads School in Santa Monica, Calif., Gibbs competes in WTA and ITF events while maintaining an amateur status. In 2010 she was ranked 356th by the WTA. In 2007, she took the number one spot for the gold medal-winning U.S. 14-and-under team for World Team Tennis.
The Honda Sports Award is presented annually to the top women athletes in 12 NCAA-sanctioned sports. As a Honda prize recipient, Gibbs becomes a finalist for the Collegiate Woman Athlete of the Year and the prestigious Honda Cup. She was chosen by a vote of coaches from 1,000 NCAA member schools. Finalists included Burdette, Beatrice Capra of Duke University, and Allie Will of the University of Florida. Joining Gibbs on the current roster of 2012 Honda Sports Award winners are Sheila Reid of Villanova University (Cross Country), Megan Frazer of the University of Maryland (Field Hockey), Teresa Noyola of Stanford University (Soccer), Alex Jupiter of the University of Southern California (Volleyball), Caitlin Leverenz of the University of California, Berkeley (Swimming & Diving), Brittney Griner of Baylor University (Basketball), Kytra Hunter of the University of Florida (Gymnastics), Brooke Pancake of the University of Alabama (Golf), Taylor Thornton of Northwestern University (Lacrosse) and 2012 Honda Inspiration Award Winner, Elena Delle Donne of the University of Delaware (Basketball).
CWSA Media Contact, Ann Herold
Stanford University, Brian Risso, Assistant Athletic Communications Director