BIRMINGHAM, Ala. - The Southeastern Conference announced its annual women's basketball awards today and three University of Tennessee Lady Vols earned honors.
In a vote by the league's 12 coaches, Tennessee graduate student and post Glory Johnson (Knoxville, Tenn.) was selected as the SEC Defensive Player of the Year. Johnson was also named to the eight player SEC First Team, the five player All-SEC Defensive Team and was the SEC Community Service representative from UT.
Senior forward/guard Shekinna Stricklen (Morrilton, Ark.) was selected along with Johnson to the eight player SEC First Team while rookie guard Ariel Massengale (Bolingbrook, Ill.) was placed on the eight player SEC All-Freshman squad.
"Obviously, I am excited for Glory, Shekinna and Ariel," Lady Vol head basketball coach Pat Summitt said. "They are players we count on to step up and lead our team in each and every game.
"I am particularly proud of Glory and her selection as the SEC Defensive Player of the Year. She has raised her level of play this season on both ends of the floor and has been an anchor for us defensively.
"Glory is very deserving of this recognition," Summitt said.
This marks Johnson's second appearance on the All-SEC First Team after also earning the same honor in 2011. Last season, she was a member of the five player 2011 SEC All-Defensive team for the first time. As a rookie, she was named to the 2009 SEC All-Freshman Team. The 6'3" leaper was UT's second leading scorer in SEC games at 13.9 ppg while posting 9.7 rpg.
"There hasn't been a better rebounder than Glory Johnson, night-in and night-out, in SEC play this year," Summitt said. "I think grabbing almost 10 rebounds per game speaks to her commitment to controlling the glass."
Johnson, who graduated in just three years in global studies, is now in graduate school pursuing a master's in communication and information studies. Despite her demanding schedule and maintaining a 3.6 GPA, she also made time to be involved in the community.
This year, she has read to youngsters at a day care center... found time to volunteer at Children's Hospital...been involved with West New Elementary School, Habitat for Humanity and the Knoxville "Extreme Home Makeover." She also assisted with the Knoxville Humane Society's Adopt-a-Pet drive and the UT FCA Girls Night Out.
Stricklen, a 6'2" guard/forward/center for the Lady Vols, was the 2011 SEC Player of the Year. This year, she earned All-SEC First Team honors for the second time (2012, 2011) after placing on the Second Team in 2009 and 2010 and All-Freshman team in 2009. Stricklen led her 2012 Tennessee team in SEC scoring (15.8 ppg) while adding 6.1 rpg.
The 5'6" Massengale has been a dynamic quarterback for the Lady Vols. She has run the team as the rookie point guard from day one and along the way broke the Lady Vol freshman assist record with 137 helpers on the season.
She averaged 7.7 ppg in both SEC and overall play while grabbing 2.7 rpg (SEC) and dishing out over five assists per contest.
The number two-seeded Lady Vols (21-8, 12-4 SEC) open play in the 2012 SEC Tournament at the Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tenn., on Fri., Mar. 2 at 2:30 p.m. CT (SportSouth). Tennessee will take on the winner of no. 7 seeded Vanderbilt (21-8, 9-7 SEC) and no. 10 seeded Mississippi State (14-15, 4-12 SEC) who play in opening round action on Mar. 1.
The complete 2012 SEC Women's Basketball Postseason Awards:
First Team All-SEC C'eira Ricketts, Arkansas Jennifer George, Florida Anne Marie Armstrong, Georgia A'dia Mathies, Kentucky LaSondra Barrett, LSU Glory Johnson, Tennessee Shekinna Stricklen, Tennessee Christina Foggie, Vanderbilt
Second Team All-SEC Sarah Watkins, Arkansas Jasmine Hassell, Georgia La'Keisha Sutton, South Carolina Jasmine Lister, Vanderbilt Tiffany Clarke, Vanderbilt Ieasia Walker, South Carolina Markeshia Grant, South Carolina Valencia McFarland, Ole Miss Diamber Johnson, Mississippi State
All-Freshman Team Calli Berna, Arkansas Hasina Muhammad, Auburn Erika Ford, Georgia Bria Goss, Kentucky Martha Alwal, Mississippi State Aleighsa Welch, South Carolina Ariel Massengale, Tennessee Kady Schrann, Vanderbilt
All-Defensive Team Anne Marie Armstrong, Georgia Porsha Porter, Mississippi State Glory Johnson, Tennessee A'dia Mathies, Kentucky La'Keisha Sutton, South Carolina
Coach of the Year Tom Collen, Arkansas
Player of the Year A'dia Mathies, Kentucky
Freshman of the Year Bria Goss, Kentucky
Defensive Player of the Year Glory Johnson, Tennessee
6th Woman of the Year Deana Allen, Florida Keyla Snowden, Kentucky
Scholar-Athlete of the Year Blanche Alverson, Auburn