The winner will be presented the prestigious 2006 Honda-Broderick Cup by Jackie Joyner-Kersee, who won the Honda-Broderick Cup in 1984 and was named "Top Collegiate Woman Athlete for the Past 25 Years" in 2001.
In addition to Ashley Miles, gymnast from Alabama, his year's finalists for the Honda-Broderick Cup are, in alphabetical order: Seimone Augustus of LSU (basketball); Mary DeScenza of Georgia (swimming); Cat Osterman Texas (softball); and Christine Sinclair of Portland (soccer).
The five finalists for the Honda-Broderick Cup were chosen from previously announced Honda Award winners in 12 different NCAA-sanctioned sports. The other 7 Honda Award winners and their respective sports are: Caroline Bierbaum of Columbia University (cross country); Paula Infante of the University of Maryland (field hockey); Irene Cho of the University of Southern California (golf); Kristen Kjellman of Northwestern University (lacrosse); Kristi Miller of Georgia Tech (tennis); Virginia Powell of the University of Southern California (track & field); and Courtney Thompson of the University of Washington (volleyball).
Career Highlights of the Final Five:
Ashley Miles – Miles won her third NCAA vault title this year, making her only the second gymnast in NCAA history, and first in over twenty years, to win a trio of vault titles. It was her fourth overall NCAA title (vault 2003, 2004 and 2005; floor exercise 2004). Miles earned All-American honors in the all-around, vault and floor exercise, pushing her career total to 12, all of which are first team honors. She also won the NCAA West Region floor exercise and vault titles in 2006, closing out her career with four consecutive regional wins on both those events.
Seimone Augustus – Augustus was named the #1 draft pick for the WNBA (Minnesota Lynx). During her senior year, she was named the National Player of the Year by the Associated Press, won the State Farm Wade Trophy, the Naismith Award and John R. Wooden Award as the nation's top player. Augustus was named the SEC Player of the Year and first team All-American, both for the second time as well as first team All-SEC this year.
Mary DeScenza – DeScenza won the 100- and 200-yard butterfly events at the NCAA Championships and also swam on two victorious relays and a third that set the American record. DeScenza earned seven All-America citations, giving her the maximum 28 for her career. She became the first woman to win the 200-yard butterfly four straight years.
Cat Osterman – Pitcher Cat Osterman was the youngest member of the U.S. Olympic team in Athens to take home a gold medal in 2004. She was a three-time USA Softball National Player of the Year, and as a sophomore, was named USA Softball Collegiate Player of the Year. She also set the NCAA career strikeout record this year (2,265) and strikeout ratio record for strikeouts-per-seven innings (14.4), and she ranks No. 2 all-time in career shutouts (85).
Christine Sinclair – Sinclair has the distinction of being one of six soccer players in NCAA history with over 100 goals (110) and 30 assists. She was named the NCAA Offensive Player of the Year and West Coast Player of the year for the third time. Sinclair scored 39 goals breaking the NCAA all-time season mark, for 88 points as the second highest in the NCAA for the season.
In addition to the annual Honda-Broderick Cup, the Collegiate Women's Sports Awards Program also presents its annual "Honda Inspiration Award" to a deserving collegiate female athlete. This year's recipient, Lindsay Payne, was diagnosed with Acute Lymphocytic Leukemia as a child, yet was able to recover and become one of the finest female swimmers in Division III history.
The program also honors "Athletes of the Year" from both NCAA Division II and Division III colleges. They are Division II, Kristin Erb, softball, Lock Haven University and Division III Megan Silva, basketball, Randolph-Macon College.
Last year's Honda-Broderick Cup winner was Ogonna Nnamani, a member of the 2004 U.S. Women's Olympic Team and a student at California's Stanford University. Other past winners of the Honda-Broderick Cup include some of the most talented and accomplished collegiate athletes in recent history: Mia Hamm (soccer, 1994), Cheryl Miller (basketball, 1983), Ann Meyers (1978, basketball), Tracy Caulkins (1982, 1984, swimming & diving), Chamique Holdsclaw (basketball, 1998) and Lisa Fernandez (softball, 1993).