March 02, 2011 09:00 ET
Mcdonald's® Announces Finalists for Morgan Wootten 'Player of the Year' Award
Four Boys and Four Girls From the 2011 McDonald's All American Teams Named Finalists for High School Player of the Year Honors
OAK BROOK, IL--(Marketwire - March 2, 2011) - McDonald's announced four male and four female finalists today for the Morgan Wootten Player of the Year Award. The annual award, named after DeMatha High School coaching legend Morgan Wootten, recognizes the nation's top boys and girls high school senior student-athletes. In addition to their skills on the court, the winners must demonstrate outstanding character and exhibit leadership, both in the classroom and in the community. Winners will be announced March 15, 2011.
Each male finalist is rated in the top five of the ESPNU 100 list. In alphabetical order: Anthony Davis (Perspectives Charter School -- Chicago, Ill.), Michael Gilchrist (St. Patrick High School -- Elizabeth, N.J.), James McAdoo (Norfolk Christian -- Norfolk, Va.) and Austin Rivers (Winter Park High School -- Winter Park, Fla.).
The female finalists also rank among the tops in girls basketball on the ESPNU 100 list. In alphabetical order: Cierra Burdick (Butler High School -- Mathews, N.C.), Ariel Massengale (Bolingbrook High School -- Bolingbrook, Ill.), Kaleena Mosqueda-Lewis (Mater Dei High School -- Santa Ana, Calif.) and Elizabeth Williams (Princess Anne High School -- Virginia Beach, Va.).
"As leaders in the community, in academics, as well as on the basketball court, these eight finalists embody what it means to be a McDonald's All American," said Morgan Wootten, McDonald's All American Games Selection Committee Chairman. "Although each athlete possesses the necessary skills to win this award, only two will be selected as the national high school player of the year."
Tickets to the McDonald's All American Games are available via Ticketmaster and charge-by-phone at 1-866-909-GAME with proceeds benefiting the Ronald McDonald House Charities® (RMHC®) of Chicagoland & Northwest Indiana. The chapter will use those funds to help build the nation's largest Ronald McDonald House in downtown Chicago. Millions of dollars have been raised for the charity since the first Game was played in 1978. Every 2011 McDonald's All American player will visit the host city's Ronald McDonald House.
The 2011 McDonald's All American Basketball Games will be played on March 30 at the United Center in Chicago, Ill. The Girls Game begins at 7:30 p.m. ET, and will broadcast live on ESPNU. The Boys Game will tip-off at 10:00 p.m. ET, and will broadcast live on ESPN.
For more information on the McDonald's All American Games, please visit: www.mcdonaldsallamerican.com.
BOYS (in alphabetical order)
Davis is an imposing center who averages a near triple-double in points, rebounds and blocks (32, 22, and 7). He grew seven inches between his sophomore and junior seasons and has developed into one of the top prospects of the 2011 class. Davis has been named all-conference for three consecutive seasons, and has been on the honor roll since his freshman year. He will enroll at the University of Kentucky in the fall.
Gilchrist is one of the top small forwards in the 2010 class. He was named the 2009 New Jersey Gatorade Player of the Year, 2010 City of Palms Classic MVP and is a three-time All-State selection. Gilchrist's favorite subject in school is math and he stated in a written questionnaire that he hopes to become an accountant. Gilchrist will join Davis at the University of Kentucky in the fall.
McAdoo is a throwback-style forward who blends superior skill with a focus on strong fundamentals. While leading his team to the Virginia State Championship during his junior year, McAdoo was named the 2009 USA Basketball Male Athlete of the Year and the 2010 Gatorade Boys Basketball Player of the Year. McAdoo is a member of the National Honor Society and his favorite subject in school is History. McAdoo will compete at the University of North Carolina in the fall.
Known for his intelligence on the court, Rivers is an elite, athletic guard who puts up big numbers on offense. He is a big-time player who makes an impact every night and controls the game with his leadership on both sides of the ball. Rivers was named a second-team All American in 2009 and 2010, and has been selected as 1st team All-State since his freshman year. Rivers will bring his reputation for excellence to Duke University.
GIRLS (in alphabetical order)
Burdick is one of the top forwards in this year's McDonald's All American Game. She was named the North Carolina State Player of the Year while leading her team to a State Championship in 2010. In addition to basketball, Burdick won the 2007 women's outdoor and 2010 women's indoor State High Jump Championship. She is a member of the National Honor Society and is a four-year honor-roll student. Burdick will attend The University of Tennessee in the fall.
Massengale is currently one of the top point guards in the 2011 class. She led her team to back-to-back State Championships in 2009 and 2010, and claimed several awards along the way. In her spare time, she volunteers at her church, school and several different community organizations, including Ronald McDonald House Charities. Massengale will join Burdick at The University of Tennessee in the fall.
Mosqueda-Lewis is a six-foot guard and top prospect on the ESPNU 100 list. As a three-point specialist, Mesqueda-Lewis gets comparisons to Ray Allen. As a Junior, she was named the ESPN Player of the Year and Parade All American. Off the court, she is a member of student council, campus ministry and volunteers at both a homeless shelter and a school for the blind. She will attend the University of Connecticut in the fall.
Williams has received comparisons to prominent NBA and WNBA centers because of her size and basketball fundamentals. The perennial award winner averages a double-double with 20 points and 10 rebounds. Williams is a two sport athlete who competes in the 400 meter dash and high jump. She volunteers at a local basketball camp in her community. Williams will attend Duke in the fall.
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About Ronald McDonald House Charities® of Chicagoland and Northwest Indiana
The mission of Ronald McDonald House Charities of Chicagoland and Northwest Indiana (RMHC®-CNI) is to improve the health, well-being and education of children through our core programs. Our four Houses provide a "home away from home" to keep families together. The Houses allow families to eat, sleep and find the emotional support they need - just blocks from where their child is being treated. To continue our mission of serving families in crisis, RMHC-CNI is building a new Ronald McDonald House -- the largest in the nation -- in Chicago. Due to open in 2012 at 211 East Grand in Streeterville, the Ronald McDonald House near Lurie Children's will provide 14-stories of care and comfort, including 86 guest rooms, a rooftop healing deck and a kitchen filled with home-cooked meals and supportive conversation. In addition, our nine sleep rooms within Lurie Children's will give parents an opportunity to refresh and replenish steps away from the neonatal intensive care unit.
For more information visit: www.RonaldHouseChicago.com.
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