Cappie Pondexter: WNBA POW

Former Rutgers women's basketball standout Cappie Pondexter (Chicago, IL) has been named the WNBA Player of the Week just three weeks into her professional career, the league announced today. Pondexter is making ...

Cappie Pondexter is making a strong case for WNBA Rookie-of-the-Year honors. For the games June 5-12, the Phoenix Mercury guard posted a league-high 28.5 points per contest, shooting 60.5 (23-38) percent from the floor and 72.7 (8-111) percent from the free-throw line. On June 6, she posted 30 points in a 90-76 victory against Sacramento, becoming the third player in league history to register back-to-back 30-point totals (Cynthia Cooper, Sheryl Swoopes). She followed that performance with 27 points on 10-for-15 shooting in a 93-79 win against Detroit June 9.

As of June 12, Pondexter leads the entire WNBA in scoring (23.7 ppg), overcoming an eight-point performance in the season opener with totals of 21, 26, 30, 30 and 27 points in the five games since her professional debut.

Pondexter was the second overall selection of the 2006 WNBA Draft by the Phoenix Mercury. A finalist for the State Farm Wade Trophy, the Naismith Award, the Women's Wooden Award, the Bayer Advantage Senior CLASS Award, the Honda Sports Award for Basketball and the Nancy Lieberman Award (nation's top point guard), the 5-9 guard was picked as the Women's Basketball News Service National Player of the Year. Pondexter was named to the Kodak/Women's Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) All-America First Team, the Associated Press All-America First Team, the All-America First Team, the U.S. Basketball Writers Association (USBWA) All-America Team, the WBNS All-America First Team, the Women's Wooden Award All-America Team, the Senior CLASS Award All-America First Team, the Full Court Press All-America First Team and the All-America First Team, and was the unanimous selection as the BIG EAST Player of the Year, becoming the first player in league history to be named to the All-BIG EAST First Team four times during her career. Picked as the WBCA National Player of the Month for January, she started all 32 games for the Scarlet Knights during the 2005-2006 season, averaging 21.6 points, 4.2 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.7 steals per game. Named to the NCAA Tournament All-Cleveland Region Team, Pondexter scored her 2,000th career point at West Virginia Feb. 10 and competed with the USA Basketball Senior National Team at the Opals World Challenge in Australia April 8-12. Pondexter played in 121 career games, making 103 starts, and averaged 18.3 points, 4.4 rebounds, 3.9 assists and 1.8 steals per game. She finished her time "On the Banks" first in three-point field-goal percentage (164-385, .426), second in scoring (2,211), free throws made (427), field goals made (810) and field goals attempted (1,768), third in scoring average (18.3 ppg), three-point field goals made (164) and free throws attempted (539), fourth in three-point field goals attempted (385), fifth in assists (470), tied for sixth in free-throw percentage (427-539, .792) and tied for seventh in steals (213) on the RU career charts.

She will play at Madison Square Garden just once this summer, a contest against the New York Liberty Sunday, July 9, at 4:00 p.m. ET (MSG TV). Phoenix will make three appearances on ESPN2 – Saturday, July 8, at Connecticut (3:00 p.m. ET); Tuesday, July 25, against Seattle (9:30 p.m. ET); and Tuesday, Aug. 8, against Minnesota (9:30 p.m. ET). The Mercury will be featured on eight NBATV broadcasts this summer, and on MSG Sunday, July 16, against the Liberty at 9:00 p.m. ET.

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