Minnesota high schooler and rising national program standout Paige Bueckers has been named USA Basketball's 2019 Female Athlete of the Year, the organization announced Tuesday.
Bueckers appeared in four events with USA Basketball this year, most notably piloting the country to gold at the 2019 FIBA Under-19 World Cup in Thailand, where she was named tournament MVP.
"It means a lot," Bueckers said of the latest honor through USA Basketball. "When (women's national team director) Carol (Callan) called me and told me, I was kind of amazed, seeing all of the people who have won it before. Me being one of the youngest to get it, it just means a lot to me. To be able to represent my country, alone, and then to get this award, it meant even more.”
Bueckers joins a host of top-level players who've recently captured USA Basketball Player of the Year honors, including Breanna Stewart (2011, 2013, 2018), Janelle Bailey (2017), Diana Taurasi (2006, 2010, 2012, 2016), A'ja Wilson (2015), and Maya Moore (2014).