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ATLANTA, Ga. - Oral Roberts University senior guard Kevi Luper was named to the 50-player Naismith Trophy Early Season Watch List, the Atlanta Tipoff Club announced today.

Luper is the lone Southland Conference player named to the list, which highlights the nation’s top 50 candidates for the prestigious season-ending player of the year award.

The Adair native was a Naismith Trophy candidate last season, when she averaged 23.8 points and 3.8 steals per game. The season ended with Luper winning her third consecutive Summit League Player of the Year honor.

Luper opened the 2012-13 season with 23 points, six rebounds and three blocks in a 64-53 victory over Tulsa in the PSO Mayor’s Cup game on November 9. The effort earned her Southland Conference Player of the Week honors.

Luper also reached the 2,300-point mark for her career in the Tulsa win, becoming the first ORU player and the 103rd player in NCAA Division I history to hit the milestone.

The 50-player watch list was compiled by the Atlanta Tipoff Club’s Board of Selectors, which based its criteria on player performances from the previous year and expectations for the 2012-2013 college basketball season. The Naismith Women’s College Player of the Year presented by AT&T will be awarded on April 8, 2013, in New Orleans, La.

In late February, the Atlanta Tipoff Club’s Board of Selectors will compile a mid-season team of the top 30 players in the nation.  In March, the Naismith Trophy voting academy will vote to narrow the list to the four finalists.

ORU returns to action on Friday, November 16, when they face UT-Arlington. Tip time in Arlington, Texas is scheduled for 2 pm CT.

For a complete list of Naismith Trophy Watch List selections, click here.

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