Gooch named to Naismith Trophy Watch List

Senior forward Chastity Gooch goes up for a shot during the first half of WKU’s Nov. 14 game against Central Arkansas. Gooch scored 14 points in the Lady Toppers’ 93-57 victory over the Sugar Bears in the first round of the Preseason Women’s NIT. Brandon Carter/HERALD

Jonah Phillips

WKU senior All-American candidate Chastity Gooch received more national attention on Wednesday, being named to the Naismith Trophy Watch List as announced by the Atlanta Tipoff Club. The Naismith Women’s Trophy is the most prestigious national award presented annually to the women’s college basketball player of the year.

Gooch is averaging 17.1 points and eight rebounds per game in her senior campaign, shooting 55.2 percent from the field and 78.4 percent from the free throw line.

The six-foot forward has earned Conference USA Player of the Week twice this season.

Last season Gooch averaged 18.4 points and 9.0 rebounds per contest, leading the team to the Sun Belt Conference Tournament Championship and WKU’s 17th appearance in the NCAA Tournament. She put forward one of the most productive seasons in Lady Topper basketball history, placing 10th on WKU’s single-season scoring record book. She also moved into the top 20 in career scoring and top 10 in both rebounds and blocks at WKU.

The Naismith awards (both men’s and women’s) are administered by the Atlanta Tipoff Club, an organization committed to promoting the game of basketball at both the high school and college levels. The awards—named after inventor of basketball Dr. James Naismith—are the most prestigious national honors in all of college basketball.