A dedicated ESPNHS team managed the Gatorade Girls Basketball Player of the Year selection process, resulting in winners based on the program's three pillars: athletic production and impact in the 2011 season, high academic achievement and exemplary personal character.
For her 50 fellow Gatorade State Girls Basketball Player of the Year winners, click here.
THE WINNER: Nirra Fields
School: Mater Dei (Santa Ana, Calif.)
Athletic achievement: Fields led the Monarchs to a 30-3 record, the Southern Section Division I-AA championship and a berth in the state tournament against Burbank (Calif.), played Wednesday. She averaged 22.5 points, 7.2 rebounds, 4.5 steals and 2.4 assists through 33 games. A member of Canada’s U19 Women’s National Team, Fields is both a McDonald’s All-American Game and a Women’s Basketball Coaches Association All-America Game selectee.
Academic excellence: Fields has maintained a B average in the classroom.
Exemplary character: She has volunteered locally on behalf of the Down Syndrome Association of Orange County.
“Fields is a great athlete, she can shoot it from deep, and when she wants to take over, she takes over,” said Matt Dale, head coach at Canyon (Canyon Country, Calif.). “She’s a great on-the-ball defender too, with great instincts.”
THE FUTURE: Fields has signed a National Letter of Intent to play basketball on an athletic scholarship at UCLA this fall.