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Outsports Female Athlete of the Year: Seimone Augustus

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Augustus won her fourth WNBA title.

WNBA: Finals-Los Angeles Sparks at Minnesota Lynx
Seimone Augustus won her fourth WNBA title and was named to her seventh All-Star team.
Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Seimone Augustus just keeps winning championships.

The Minnesota Lynx player helped lead her team to its fourth WNBA title in seven years, earning her Outsports’ Female Athlete of the Year Award, which recognizes an out LGBTQ athlete’s performance in their sport.

Her career is approaching legendary status. In college at LSU she won the Wooden Award twice. Along with her four WNBA rings she has three Olympic gold medals and a world championship.

All the while she has not been afraid to share her true self with the world. In 2012 she spoke publicly about her relationship in a successful effort to defeat a same-sex marriage ban in Minnesota. She has proudly worn the badge of “out athlete” ever since, not shy about speaking up on issues that matter to her.

This season was another hugely successful campaign for the superstar. Augustus started all 32 games in which she played. While her points-per-game (10.9) was the lowest of her career, her assists-per-game (4.0) was by far the highest. She took fewer shots per game than any other season in her career, dishing the ball to teammates.

That all paid off in her seventh selection to the WNBA All-Star team. More importantly, the Lynx posted a 27-7 regular-season record and earned the top seed in the WNBA playoffs. In the deciding game 5 of the Finals, Augustus had 14 points and 6 assists in the victory.

Teammates and opponents alike praised Augustus this season as “dependable,” “a spectacular ball-handler,” and a hard worker.

There are many out LGBTQ athletes who had a phenomenal 2017, and the final decision was as difficult as we had with our awards this year. Yet for us, Augustus stands out as much for her championship-level play and leadership in 2017 as for her incredible career body of work.

Our honorable mentions for Outsports’ Female Athlete of the Year:

  • EJ Proctor: The Duke soccer goalie led her team to the National Semifinals, posting a shutout in her final game
  • Laurel Hubbard: The weightlifter won New Zealand’s first-ever medal, a silver, at the world championships
  • Carly Muscaro: The sprinter on the 200-meter and 400-meter sprints at the NCAA Division II National Championships
  • Emmonnie Henderson: The Louisville track and field star got second in the shot put at the NCAA Division I outdoor National Championships and won her third ACC Conference Indoor MVP Award.
  • Amanda Nunes: The UFC bantamweight champ defended her title in September at UFC 215.
  • Taylor Emery: The basketball player won a JuCo National Championship and was named player of the year.

Previous Outsports Female Athlete of the Year winners:

2016: Nicola Adams
2015: Abby Wamback and Megan Rapinoe
2014: Brittney Griner