By DOUG FEINBERG
AP Basketball Writer
Breanna Stewart is moving up on the USA Basketball victory list.
The UConn sophomore earned her second USA Basketball female athlete of the year honor Tuesday, becoming just the seventh player to win the award twice.
“It’s a great honor,” said Stewart, who also received the award in 2011. “I love competing with USA Basketball and have been very fortunate to have the opportunity to do that for the last several years. I’m so happy and thankful that USA Basketball has given me all the opportunities it has to travel abroad and learn a lot.”
She joined Diana Taurasi, Dawn Staley, Lisa Leslie, Cheryl Miller, Katrina McClain and Teresa Edwards as the only players to win the award more than once.
Stewart guided the FIBA U19 World Championship team to a gold medal this past summer. She’s already won five gold medals while playing for USA Basketball.
“USA Basketball is very proud to honor Breanna as our 2013 Female Athlete of the Year,” said Jim Tooley, USA Basketball CEO/Executive Director. “She not only is an incredible basketball talent, as evidenced by her U19 world championship MVP selection, but she also is a tremendous team leader, and we are very grateful for her dedication and commitment.”
The 6-foot-5 sensation helped UConn win the national championship as a freshman and has guided the top-ranked Huskies to a 15-0 mark so far. She’s averaging 18.1 points, 8.0 rebounds and 2.8 blocks this season for Connecticut.
Stewart earned MVP honors for the World Championship and also was the Final Four Most Outstanding Player last April.
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