Bygate takes MVP honours
Nelson’s Jess Bygate was named Most Valuable Player after leading her Sparks to the 2012 Women’s Basketball Championship last weekend.
The 2011 runners-up went one better this year, overhelming debutants Waitakere West Auckland 61-40 in the final. Bygate compiled a double double of 10 points/12 rebounds in the title game and has already left to take up a scholarship at Dickinson State University, under NZ-born head coach Caleb Harrison.
Sparks coach Tatjana Zizic was named Coach of the Year and Hutt Valley Flyers forward Stella Beck took out Junior Player of the Year honours.
Bygate joined team-mates Jodi Hikuroa and Nikki Rampton in the All-Star Five, along with Soraya Umaga-Jensen of Otago Oceana Goldrush and Rotorua Vols’ Aroha Jennings, who was also the competition’s top scorer.
Waitakere coach and Tall Ferns assistant Aik Ho was recognised for his service to women’s basketball, while manager Julie Harris was named Manager of the Year.
2012 Women’s Basketball Championship
WBC Championship Winners – Nelson Sparks
WBC Plate Winners – Waikato Wizards
MVP of the Year – Jess Bygate (Nelson Sparks)
WBC All-Star Five – Jess Bygate (Nelson Sparks), Jodi Hikuroa (Nelson Sparks), Aroha Jennings (Rotorua Vols), Nikki Rampton (Nelson Sparks), Soraya Umaga-Jensen (Otago Goldrush)
YMCA Junior Player of the Year – Stella Beck
Studio 23 Coach of the Year – Tatjana Zizic
Manager of the Year – Julie Harris
Service to Women’s Basketball – Aik Ho
Championship Final Officials – Melony Wealleans, Nick Naylor