Augustus, Chatman bring home top national honors

Seimone Augustus, a junior guard for the second-ranked LSU Lady Tigers' basketball team, was named the National Player of the Year by the United States Basketball Writers Association and head coach Pokey Chatman received the National Coach of the Year honor, it was announced by the organization on Wednesday.

Senior point guard Temeka Johnson joined teammate Augustus on the 10-member USBWA All-America team.

"These honors are so well deserved for Temeka and Seimone," Chatman said. "The numbers speak for themselves; they've both done so much individually and within the framework of the team to evaluate our program throughout their careers. Obviously, these two young ladies have maximized their God given abilities to the fullest. They've been my personal All-Americans from day one."

Augustus, a Baton Rouge native, is averaging 20.1 points and 4.5 rebounds per game heading into Sunday's NCAA Tournament. She has scored in double figures in all 31 games this season to extend her school-record streak to 57 straight games, including scoring a career-high 33 points in LSU's early season victory over then No. 8 Baylor in the State Farm Hall of Fame Tip Off Classic.

LSU is the top seed in the Chattanooga Region and will face No. 16 seed Stetson at 1:30 p.m. CST in Knoxville, Tenn.

Chatman, in her first year as head coach, guided the Lady Tigers to a 29-2 record, including the school's best regular season mark of 27-1 and the program's first Southeastern Conference regular season championship. Chatman and LSU posted a perfect 14-0 record in the SEC.

"I'm very proud to receive this award on behalf of so many that have had a hand in my success. None more than Sue Gunter," Chatman said of her honor. "I'm blessed to be the leader of such a well assembled group of players and coaches."

Augustus, who was the USBWA National Freshman of the Year honor in 2003, is the first Lady Tiger to receive a National Player of the Year honor in the program's 30-year history.

Johnson, who ranks second in the nation with 7.5 assists per game, received first-team All-America honors for the first time in her career. The senior has been a three-time honorable mention All-American.

LSU is the only school to have two selected to the USBWA All-America team.

Johnson, a two-time first-team All-SEC member, enters the tournament averaging 10.0 points per game to go with her SEC leading assist total.

With Augustus and Chatman each receiving the honor, it marks the seventh time both the National Player and Coach of the Year were from the same school.

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