Duke wins top honor for sixth straight year

Updated: March 9, 2005, 10:25 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

DURHAM, N.C. -- Duke junior Monique Currie was named 2005 ACC Player of the Year on Saturday, which was released by the Associated Press.

Currie received 54 of the 74 votes by members of the Atlantic Coast Sports Writers Association (ASCWA). The accolade marks the sixth straight year a Blue Devil has claimed the ACC Player of the Year award as Georgia Schweitzer won it in 2000 and 2001, followed by Alana Beard in 2002, 2003 and 2004.

Duke now has claimed the ACC Player of the Year honor seven different times, which is a new ACC record. Chris Moreland also won the honor in 1987 for the Blue Devils.

On Tuesday, Currie was named first team All-ACC as she was the only unanimous selection to the five-member squad. Currie, a native of Washington, D.C., has stepped up and become a leader for the sixth-ranked Blue Devils since the departure of Beard. The 6-foot wing has averaged 17.6 points, 7.2 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 2.2 steals, and led Duke to a 26-3 overall (12-1 ACC) mark.

Currie is the only player in the ACC to rank in the top 15 in scoring, rebounding, assists and steals.

"I think Monique has come so far this season," Duke coach Gail Goestenkors said. "She has had a lot of pressure on her to step forward as a leader and go-to player.

"Monique has had to work for every basket as we don't fast break as much as we did in the past. Her points have been harder to get and she has done a great job on the rebounding end for us. Monique has elevated the level of play for our entire team."

On the season, Currie has scored 20 or more points 11 times, scored double-figures in 28 of 29 games and collected six double-doubles. In the ACC stats, she ranks fourth in scoring (17.4), seventh in rebounding (7.2), 15th in assists (3.34), 13th in free-throw percentage (76.4), eighth in steals (2.24), 15th in assist/turnover ratio (1.17) and fourth in defensive rebounds (4.97).

Currie also has been a clutch performer for the Blue Devils on the season, hitting the game-winning shots against Tennessee, NC State and Maryland.

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