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ACC Women’s Basketball Announces 2021 Award Winners

Triad HS alums Elissa Cunane and Elizabeth Kitley were named to the First Team.
Credit: WFMY News 2 Sports

GREENSBORO, N.C. (theACC.com) - For the second consecutive year, Louisville guard Dana Evans has been tabbed the Atlantic Coast Conference Women’s Basketball Player of the Year by the league’s Blue Ribbon Panel and the ACC’s 15 head coaches. 

It marks the fourth straight year that the Cardinals have produced the ACC Women’s Player of the Year, matching Duke (2000-05 for the longest such streak in league history.

Syracuse’s Kamilla Cardoso was tabbed the ACC Rookie of the Year, while Georgia Tech’s Nell Fortner was voted ACC Coach of the Year by the Blue Ribbon Panel.

The conference’s head coaches chose Notre Dame’s Maddy Westbeld and NC State’s Wes Moore for ACC Rookie and Coach of the Year, respectively.

Additionally, Georgia Tech senior forward Lorela Cubaj and Syracuse’s Cardoso were voted ACC Co-Defensive Players of the Year by the league’s head coaches, while NC State’s Jada Boyd and Syracuse’s Emily Engstler earned Co-Sixth Player of the Year honors. 

The 2021 selections mark the first time that conference has awarded Co-Defensive Players of the Year since the award started in 2005 and the first time the league has had Co-Sixth Players of the Year since the honor began in 2008.

Georgia Tech junior guard Lotta-Maj Lahtinen received the nod as the ACC’s Most Improved Player.

Georgia Tech, NC State and Virginia Tech each placed two on the Blue Ribbon Panel’s First Team All-ACC, while the Wolfpack led the way with three on the head coaches first team.

 The Blue Ribbon Panel and Head Coaches All-Freshman Teams were identical with Clemson’s Gabby Elliott, Louisville’s Olivia Cochran and Hailey Van Lith, North Carolina’s Deja Kelly, Notre Dame’s Westbeld, Syracuse’s Cardoso, Virginia Tech’s Georgia Amoore and Wake Forest’s Jewel Spear.

The coaches also selected the 2020-21 ACC All-Defensive Team which features Boston College’s Marnelle Garraud, Georgia Tech’s Cubaj, Florida State’s Morgan Jones, Louisville’s Mykasa Robinson and Syracuse’s Cardoso.

2020-21 Blue Ribbon Panel Awards

ACC Player of the Year: Dana Evans, Sr., G, Louisville

ACC Freshman of the Year: Kamilla Cardoso, Fr., C, Syracuse

ACC Coach of the Year: Nell Fortner, Georgia Tech

Blue Ribbon Panel

All-ACC First Team

Lorela Cubaj, Sr., F, Georgia Tech

Lotta-Maj Lahtinen, Jr., G Georgia Tech

Dana Evans, Sr., G, Louisville

Elissa Cunane, Jr., C, NC State

Jakia Brown-Turner, So., W, NC State

Maddy Westbeld, Fr., F, Notre Dame

Kamilla Cardoso, Fr., C, Syracuse

Elizabeth Kitley, So., C, Virginia Tech

Aisha Sheppard, Sr., G Virginia Tech

Ivana Raca, Sr., F, Wake Forest

All-ACC Second Team

Taylor Soule, Jr., F, Boston College

Delicia Washington, Sr., G, Clemson

Morgan Jones, Jr., G, Florida State

Kayla Jones, Sr., F, NC State

Gina Conti, Sr., G Wake Forest

Honorable Mention

Janelle Bailey, Sr., C, North Carolina

Raina Perez, Gr., G, NC State

Jayla Everett, Jr., G, Pitt

Kiara Lewis, Sr., G, Syracuse

Tiana Mangakahia, Gr., G, Syracuse

2020-21 Head Coaches Awards

ACC Player of the Year: Dana Evans, Sr., G, Louisville

ACC Freshman of the Year: Maddy Westbeld, Fr., F, Notre Dame

ACC Coach of the Year: Wes Moore, NC State

ACC Co-Defensive Players of the Year: Lorela Cubaj, Sr., F, Georgia Tech; Kamilla Cardoso, Fr., C, Syracuse

ACC Co-Sixth Players of the Year: Jada Boyd, So., F, NC State; Emily Engstler, Jr., G/F, Syracuse

ACC Most Improved Player: Lotta-Maj Lahtinen, Jr., G, Georgia Tech

Head Coaches Awards

All-ACC First Team

Taylor Soule, Jr., F, Boston College

Morgan Jones, Jr., G, Florida State

Lorela Cubaj, Sr., F, Georgia Tech

Dana Evans, Sr., G, Louisville

Jakia Brown-Turner, So., W, NC State

Elissa Cunane, Jr., C, NC State

Kayla Jones, Sr., F, NC State

Elizabeth Kitley, So., C, Virginia Tech

Aisha Sheppard, Sr., G, Virginia Tech

Ivana Raca, Sr., F, Wake Forest

All-ACC Second Team

Delicia Washington, Sr., G, Clemson

Lotta-Maj Lahtinen, Jr., G, Georgia Tech

Maddy Westbeld, Fr., F, Notre Dame

Kamilla Cardoso, Fr., C, Syracuse

Gina Conti, Sr., G, Wake Forest

Honorable Mention

Janelle Bailey, Sr., C, North Carolina

Jayla Everett, Jr., G, Pitt

Tiana Mangakahia, Gr., G, Syracuse

All-Defensive Team

Marnelle Garraud, Jr., G, Boston College

Lorela Cubaj, Sr., F, Georgia Tech

Morgan Jones, Jr., G, Florida State

Mykasa Robinson, Jr., G, Louisville

Kamilla Cardoso, Fr., C, Syracuse 

All-Freshman Team (Blue Ribbon & Head Coaches are the same)

Gabby Elliott, G, Clemson

Hailey Van Lith, G, Louisville

Olivia Cochran, F, Louisville

Deja Kelly, G, North Carolina

Maddy Westbeld, F, Notre Dame

Kamilla Cardoso, C, Syracuse

Georgia Amoore, G, Virginia Tech

Jewel Spear, G, Wake Forest