FOREST GROVE - Pacific University junior and Warrenton High School graduate DeeDee Arnall is being recognized as one of the top five female small college athletes in Oregon, earning nomination for the 2005 Ad Rutschman Award.
Arnall, a standout for the Boxers in both women's basketball and track and field, will be honored along with four other finalists at the Oregon Sports Awards, which will be held Jan. 30 at Nike's Tiger Woods Theatre in Beaverton. The ceremony will be broadcast live in Portland on KATU-TV (Channel 2).
Named for the former Linfield College football coach and athletic director, the Ad Rutschman Award annually honors the top male and female athlete from NCAA Division II, NCAA Division III and NAIA level institutions. Nominees must attend an Oregon school or be from Oregon.
Arnall is the second Pacific athlete to be selected as a finalist for the honor. Standout women's wrestler Jill Remiticado was a finalist for the 2004 award.
"DeeDee is a tremendously talented athlete," said Pacific head women's basketball coach Jeff Thompson. "She has a great work ethic and shows great leadership. She is always trying to improve herself and has a natural instinct to pick up on things easily."
During 2004, Arnall established herself as one of the most dominant female athletes to don a Boxers' uniform since the mid 1990s. On the basketball court, Arnall emerged with a standout sophomore season, averaging 21 points and eight rebounds per game.
She finished the year ranked eighth in the nation at the Division III level in points per game and 10th in field goal percentage, hitting 59 percent of her shots.
Arnall was twice named Northwest Conference Player of the Week and once to the D3Hoops.com National Team of the Week.
Following the season, Arnall became Pacific's first All-NWC First Team selection since 1996 and was tabbed for the D3Hoops.com All-West Region Second Team.
This season, Arnall is averaging 26 points and 8.8 rebounds per game, has a .540 field goal percentage and has been held under 20 points only once in eight games.
As of Jan. 2, Arnall ranks second in the nation in points per game and 14th in field goal percentage.
In track and field, Arnall has been nearly unstoppable in the javelin.
She has won the last two NWC Championships in the discipline, doing so last May with a best throw of 141 feet, seven inches and entered the NCAA Division III Championships with the fifth best mark in the nation.
At the national meet, Arnall earned All-American honors with a third-place finish, uncorking a personal best throw of 143 feet, 11 inches on her final legal attempt.
"If you compare her with all of the kids in the Northwest Conference, she is definitely worthy of this honor," said Pacific head track and field coach Ron Tabb. "With as dedicated and multi-talented as she is, it is exciting to see her up for this award."
Arnall will be joined at the ceremony by finalists Liz Coburn (Linfield), Caitie Davidson (Concordia), Kristin Ferris (Southern Oregon) and Nikki McElligott (Oregon Tech).