DeWanna Bonner Named 2009 WNBA Sixth Woman of the Year presented by Kia Motors


DeWanna Bonner averaged 11.2 points and a team-high 5.8 rebounds in 21.3 minutes per game.
Barry Gossage/NBAE/Getty Images
-- Fifth Overall Draft Pick Named Top Reserve --

NEW YORK, Sept. 18, 2009 – Phoenix Mercury forward DeWanna Bonner has been named the 2009 WNBA Sixth Woman of the Year presented by Kia Motors, the league announced today. Bonner received 20 votes from a national panel of sportswriters and broadcasters to earn the award. She becomes the second consecutive rookie to receive the honor, following 2008 winner Candice Wiggins. The top three vote getters for 2009 Sixth Woman of the Year were all rookies as Atlanta Dream forward Angel McCoughtry finished second with 10 votes and Detroit Shock guard Shavonte Zellous finished third with four votes.

Bonner made an immediate impact, pushing the Mercury to a 5-1 start after the team missed the 2008 WNBA Playoffs. The Mercury finished the 2009 season with the best record in the league and home court advantage throughout the playoffs. Bonner helped propel the Mercury to 23 wins, a seven-game improvement from 2008. She led her team in rebounds (5.8 rpg) and was third in points (11.2 ppg). Despite coming off the bench in all of her 34 games played, Bonner averaged over 20 minutes per game and led all rookies in double-doubles (five).

Her 5.8 rebounds slotted her first and her 11.2 points placed her third among all WNBA rookies. In her professional debut, Bonner posted a double-double with 16 points and 11 rebounds in a 90-79 Mercury win against the defending Western Conference champion San Antonio Silver Stars. Bonner’s season-high 21 points came in a 104-80 win over the Minnesota Lynx, during which she also collected 10 rebounds.

Bonner’s 196 total rebounds were the most ever for a Mercury player as a reserve; the previous mark was 147 by Kelly Schumacher in 2007. Bonner also set a record for the most rebounds in a single season for Mercury rookies.

Bonner was honored with the adidas Rookie of the Month award in June. For the month, she averaged 11.5 points and 6.1 rebounds in 10 games.

A standout at Auburn, Bonner was drafted fifth overall by the Mercury in the 2009 WNBA Draft. As a senior, she was named the SEC Player of the Year and led the SEC in scoring, becoming the first Auburn player to do so. Bonner was a three-time All-SEC First Team member.

In honor of being named the Sixth Woman of the Year presented by Kia Motors, Bonner will receive $5,000 and a specially-designed trophy from Tiffany & Co.

For the first time ever, a single WNBA marketing partner will present the WNBA Most Valuable Player, WNBA Defensive Player of the Year, WNBA Most Improved Player, and WNBA Sixth Woman of the Year, grouped under the banner of “The WNBA Performance Awards presented by Kia Motors.” As a Proud Partner of the WNBA and the official presenter of the awards, Kia Motors will be incorporated into the formal award presentations and will receive prominent branding in the awards coverage on WNBA.com.

Below are the results of the 2009 WNBA Sixth Woman of the Year Presented by Kia Motors voting:

9 WNBA SIXTH WOMAN OF THE YEAR PRESENTED BY KIA MOTORS RESULTS

20DeWanna BonnerPhoenix Mercury
10Angel McCoughtryAtlanta Dream
4Shavonte ZellousDetroit Shock
1Kara BraxtonDetroit Shock
1Kristi ToliverChicago Sky
1Hamchetou Maiga-BaSacramento Monarchs
1Crystal LanghorneWashington Mystics

WNBA SIXTH WOMAN OF THE YEAR PRESENTED BY KIA MOTORS WINNERS

2009DeWanna BonnerPhoenix Mercury
2008Candice WigginsMinnesota Lynx
2007*Plenette PiersonDetroit Shock
* Inaugural award

About the WNBA
The WNBA is a unique global sports property combining competition, sportsmanship, and entertainment value with its status as an icon for social change, achievement, and diversity. Composed of 13 teams, the WNBA is the most successful women’s professional team sports league in the world. The league concluded its historic 13th regular season with increased attendance for the third consecutive year and increased viewership on ESPN2 for a second straight season. The 2009 WNBA Playoffs tipped off Sept. 16.

Through WNBA Cares, the WNBA is deeply committed to creating programs that improve the quality of life for all people, with a special emphasis on programs that promote a healthy lifestyle and positive body image, increase breast and women’s health awareness, support youth and family development, and focus on education. For more information on the WNBA, log on to www.wnba.com.

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