St Peter’s School Cambridge basketballer Charlisse Leger-Walker won the McGloughlin Trophy as the Female Junior Player of the Year at the Basketball New Zealand Awards on Friday evening.
The awards recognised excellence and contribution in the 2016 year, and it was a unanimous decision from all coaching staff of the Junior Tall Ferns to nominate Charlisse for this award. In their words, she demonstrated the skills, attitude and professionalism, and performed to the highest standard in her age group.
During 2016 Charlisse was named Most Valuable Player for both the Under 17 and New Zealand Secondary Schools Championships. Internationally, playing for the Junior Tall Ferns team, she was the most consistent performer during their campaigns in China, Fiji and back here in New Zealand. Leger-Walker was also a valuable member of the women’s Under 18 team that came fifth at the FIBA Under 18 3x3 World Championships in Kazakhstan last year, the best placing ever for one of our women’s teams.
Late last year, the then Year 10 Charlisse won the tournament MVP as St Peter’s won the NZSS girls title for the second successive year. St Peter’s beat Mount Albert Grammar School 68-53 in the final. In the final she racked up a double-double with 35 points and 14 rebounds.
Charlisse went on to win last year’s Waikato Secondary Schools Sportswoman of the Year title, at the Brian Perry Waikato Regional Sports Awards.
The Ambassador’s Trophy for Male Junior Player of the Year was won by former Rangitoto College player Sam Waardenburg, who is now studying and playing NCAA Division 1 basketball on scholarship for the University of Miami.
He was chosen to attend several basketball camps overseas including the NBA and FIBA Basketball Without Border Asia Camp in Melbourne where he was named Most Valuable Player. This led to a selection for the NBA and FIBA Basketball without Borders Global Camp in New Orleans, as well as the Adidas Nations Tournament in Los Angeles.
Sam was an integral member of the Under 18 3x3 World Cup team which finished fourth in Kazakhstan. Most notably he was a member of the Junior Tall Blacks team that beat Australia at the FIBA Oceania Under 18 World Qualifying tournament in Fiji and was named in the All Star Five for the tournament. He played for the Rangitoto College team that won the Secondary Schools National Championships and was also named as MVP for that tournament.
College Sport Media is dedicated to telling the story of successful young sportspeople in New Zealand