BUTLER'S CIERRA BURDICK IS GATORADE WOMEN'S BASKETBALL
PLAYER OF THE YEAR IN NORTH CAROLINA
CHICAGO— In its 26th year of honoring the nation’s best high school athletes, The Gatorade Company, in collaboration with ESPN RISE, has announced Cierra Burdick of David Butler High School in Matthews as its 2010-11 Gatorade North Carolina Girls Basketball Player of the Year.
The award, which recognizes not only outstanding athletic excellence, but also high standards of academic achievement and exemplary character demonstrated on and off the court, distinguishes Burdick as North Carolina’s best high school girls basketball player. She is now a finalist for the prestigious Gatorade National Girls Basketball Player of the Year award.
The 6-foot-2 senior guard and forward averaged 23.1 points, 15.3 rebounds, 5.4 assists, 5.0 blocks and 4.1 steals per game this past season, leading the Bulldogs (30-1) to the NCHSAA Western Regionals. The state’s returning Gatorade Girls Basketball Player of the Year, Burdick shot 61 percent from the field, 48 percent from 3-point range and 85 percent from the free-throw line. She helped lead Butler to the NCHSAA 4-A championship in 2010.
Burdick has maintained a 4.28 weighted GPA in the classroom. A member of the National Honor Society, she has volunteered as the lead counselor at the Butler Bulldog Basketball Camp and on behalf of multiple charitable organizations to benefit area breast cancer survivors and underprivileged children, including the U.S. Marine Corps Toys for Tots Foundation.
“Cierra Burdick is a phenom,” said Butler head coach Mark Sanders. “Cierra is the definition of a scholar-athlete. She is an extremely hard worker and is very competitive in the classroom and on the court. She deserves everything that comes her way because she has worked so hard to get to where she is today. She is not only a great player but she is an even better leader, and the way she leads is what makes her so special.”
Burdick has signed a national letter of intent to play basketball on scholarship at the University of Tennessee this fall.
The Gatorade Player of the Year program annually recognizes one winner in the District of Columbia and each of the 50 states that sanction high school football, girls volleyball, boys and girls cross country, boys and girls basketball, boys and girls soccer, baseball, softball, and boys and girls track & field, and awards one National Player of the Year in each sport.
The selection process is administered by ESPN RISE and the Gatorade high school sports leadership team, which work with top sport-specific experts and a media advisory board of accomplished, veteran prep sports journalists to determine the state winners in each sport.