FRISCO, Texas – Texas A&M-Corpus Christi’s Alecia Westbrook has been selected as the 2022-23 Southland Conference Women’s Basketball Player of the Year, as the all-conference teams and special award winners were announced Friday.

Westbrook is the first Islander to win Southland Player of the Year honors and also repeats as Defensive Player of the Year after leading A&M-Corpus Christi to a share of the regular season title.

Westbrook averaged a double-double for the regular season with 12.6 points and 10.0 rebounds per game. She ranked ninth in the conference in scoring average and led the Southland in rebounding for the third straight season. Westbrook ranked in the top 10 in the conference in shooting percentage, free throw percentage, and blocks, and led the conference in steals with 2.8 per game. She had 14 double-doubles this season, with 11 coming in SLC play. She has been ranked as high as 17th nationally for defensive rebounds per game in addition to being top 20 in total rebounds and double-doubles. In addition, she surpassed 1,000 career points this season.

Southeastern head coach Ayla Guzzardo won Coach of the Year honors after leading SLU to a share of the league’s regular season crown. She is the first coach from Southeastern to claim this honor as the Lady Lions won their first SLC regular season title and have earned three consecutive winning seasons for the first time since a run from 1993-96.

Nicholls’ Lexi Alexander won Freshman of the Year honors and UIW’s Nina De Leon Negron won Newcomer of the Year honors.

Alexander recorded eight double-doubles for the Colonels and finished fourth in the conference in scoring at 13.8 points per game, third in rebounding at 8.4 boards per game, and fifth in blocks at 1.1 stuffs per game. She led the league in minutes played at 36.8 per game. She’s the first Colonel to win this award since 2011.

De Leon Negron becomes the first Cardinal to win Newcomer of the Year and second UIW player to ever win a Southland women’s basketball special award. She averaged 11.8 points, 4.1 rebounds, 3.8 assists, and 2.0 steals per game. She led the conference in assist-to-turnover ratio at 1.6 and had two double-doubles in late season games that pushed the Cardinals to a first round tournament bye. She was also named to the league’s all-defensive team.

Joining Westbrook on the All-Southland First Team are Lamar’s Akasha Davis, A&M-Corpus Christi’s Makinna Serrata, Northwestern State’s Candice Parramore, and Southeastern’s Alexius Horne.

Westbrook and Serrata are repeat selections from 2021-22 and become the first Islanders to repeat on the All-SLC First Team.

On the second team are De Leon Negron, Southeastern’s Hailey Giaratano, HCU’s N’Denasija Collins, New Orleans’ DeArica Pryor, and A&M-Commerce’s DesiRay Kernal. Pryor was also named to the All-Defensive Team and this is Giaratano’s third overall all-conference selection.

The All-Defensive Team is made up of Westbrook, Pryor, De Leon Negron, and Southeastern’s Natalie Kelly and Jen Pierre.

The 2023 Jersey Mike’s Southland Conference Women’s Basketball Championship presented by begins on Monday morning, with the championship game on Thursday. All games will be broadcast on ESPN+, with the championship game on ESPNU.

PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Alecia Westbrook, A&M-Corpus Christi
COACH OF THE YEAR: Ayla Guzzardo, Southeastern
DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Alecia Westbrook, A&M-Corpus Christi
FRESHMAN OF THE YEAR: Lexi Alexander, Nicholls


Alecia Westbrook 2A&M-Corpus ChristiSr.F/CKansas City, Mo.
Akasha DavisLamarSo.F/CDallas, Texas
Makinna Serrata 2A&M-Corpus ChristiR-Sr.GTilden, Texas
Candice Parramore 2Northwestern StateSr.GDallas, Texas
Alexius HorneSoutheasternJr.GBaton Rouge, La.


Hailey Giaratano 3SoutheasternJr.GPonchatoula, La.
Nina De Leon NegronUIWJr.GSan Juan, Puerto Rico
N’Denasija CollinsHCUSr.FMansfield, Texas
DeArica PryorNew OrleansSr.GUrbandale, Iowa
DesiRay KernalA&M-CommerceJr.FNewton, Kan.


Alecia WestbrookA&M-Corpus ChristiSr.FKansas City, Mo.
Natalie KellySoutheasternSr.FAlbany, La.
DeArica PryorNew OrleansSr.GUrbandale, Iowa
Jen PierreSoutheasternFr.GSpringfield, La.
Nina De Leon NegronUIWJr.GSan Juan, Puerto Rico

{Courtesy: release from the Southland Conference}