SAN FRANCISCO – The Pac-12 Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) voted to award the California women’s basketball team with the Pac-12 Sportsmanship Award for the 2021-22 season, the conference announced today. Nominated by Oregon State Athletics in collaboration with Oregon State’s SAAC, this year’s honor recognizes the program’s grace, dignity, and participation in allowing the Beavers’ Andrea Aquino, to make an uncontested layup on her Senior Day at Gill Coliseum.
Aquino was the No. 7-rated high school player in the nation when she signed her National Letter of Intent at Oregon State, but prior to her freshman season she was diagnosed with a medical condition and not cleared for competition. Despite being unable to play, Aquino remained an integral part of the Beaver program throughout her four years in Corvallis.
In February, she was recognized in the Senior Day ceremony prior to Oregon State’s game against California. With the Golden Bears’ help, Aquino started the game, won the jump ball and dribbled down the court for an uncontested layup. The Beavers then returned the favor by allowing Cal to score. It was Aquino’s lone appearance and the only basket of her career.
“It meant a lot to me,” Aquino said of the moment after the game. “Listening to Gill go crazy is something I’ll remember for the rest of my life.”
“Throughout her career, Andrea remained active with her team and fulfilled her newfound role, despite it not being the one she initially had in mind,” Oregon State SAAC president Nya Buckner said in a statement. “[On Feb. 20] Gill erupted into cheers as we watched Andrea take the court and put the ball through the hoop. Cal’s demonstration of sportsmanship created an unforgettable moment for Andrea, OSU women’s basketball, and all of Gill Coliseum.”
How do you respond when something you love is taken from you? Look no further than @andrea_aquino6’s example. She has given so much to this program for 4 years and today took the court for the first time. What a blessing she is to all and the definition of INSPIRING! 🧡u, AA! pic.twitter.com/SpubjWondm
— Scott Rueck (@CoachRueck) February 21, 2022
The Golden Bears’ women’s basketball team is the second consecutive winner of the Pac-12 Sportsmanship Award from California, following the field hockey team’s honor in 2021. Other California student-athletes to receive the award include Michael Capbarat (2008), Anna Key (2006) and Cara Chlebicki (2005).
The Pac-12 Sportsmanship Award is annually selected by members of the Pac-12 Student-Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC) and is based on good sportsmanship and ethical behavior in participation of intercollegiate athletics, as well as a demonstration of good citizenship outside of the sports-competition setting.
PAC-12 SPORTSMANSHIP AWARD WINNERS
|PAC-12 SPORTSMANSHIP AWARD WINNERS|
|2022||California women’s basketball|
|2021||California field hockey|
|2020||Oregon State women’s basketball|
|2019||UCLA women’s soccer|
|2018||Sarah Shimomura, Arizona|
|2017||Anna Rosen, Washington State|
|2016||Riley Sorenson, Washington State|
|2015||UCLA women’s gymnastics|
|2013||Kylie Sharp, Washington|
|2012||Bryson Beirne, Arizona; Brittany Hart, Oregon|
|2011||Jeff Gudaitis, Washington; Katie Matusik, Arizona|
|2010||Ben Ashmore, Arizona State; Stanford women’s rowing|
|2009||Stenn Parton, USC; Lindsey Kelley, Arizona|
|2008||Michael Capbarat, California; Arianna Lambie, Stanford|
|2007||Mitch Canham, Oregon State; Jennifer Tangtiphaiboontana, Stanford|
|2006||Anna Key, California; Eric Nygard, Washington State|
|2005||Channing Frye, Arizona; Cara Chlebicki, California|
|2004||Grayling Love, Arizona State|