Porter, Raster Named Women's Basketball Captains at Banquet

Porter, Raster Named Women's Basketball Captains at Banquet

Rising junior Madeline Raster (left) and rising senior Kirby Porter (right) were named women's basketball captains for the 2017-18 season. (Courtesy of Harvard OAC)

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. – Rising senior Kirby Porter and rising junior Madeline Raster were named captains for the 2017-18 season at the Harvard women's basketball team's annual year-end banquet at the Harvard Club of Boston.

Porter started 27 of 28 games played this season and was one of the team's top defenders. She averaged 2.6 points per game and finished fifth on the team with an average of 4.0 rebounds per game, notching a career high 11 rebounds in a win against Samford on Nov. 18.

The Chevy Chase, Md. native is a sociology concentrator who resides in Cabot House.

Raster started all 30 games for Harvard, finishing third on the team in scoring (10.6 points per game), rebounding (4.8 rebounds per game), and assists (1.9 assists per game). She led team with 41 steals (1.4 steals per game, 10th Ivy League) and scored a career-best 24 points in Harvard's 76-56 win over Yale (Feb. 12).

A native of South Bend, Ind., Raster is a government concentrator who lives in Winthrop House.

At the banquet, head coach Kathy Delaney-Smith and the women's basketball coaching staff recognized several players with year-end awards.

Senior co-captain Taylor Finley earned the Robin L. Mitchell Harvard Pride Award. The award is given annually to the player who displays exceptional sportsmanship, enthusiasm, and dedication to the team, while exemplifying what it means to wear the Harvard jersey by always putting the team first and by contributing to the Harvard community both on and off the court.

Freshman Katie Benzan a first team All-Ivy League selection, was named the team's Most Valuable Player. The first player since Reka Cserny (2001-02) to earn All-Ivy First Team honors as a freshman, and an All-ECAC Second Team selection, Benzan hit an Ivy-best 85 three-pointers on the season (85-217, 39.2%, 4th Ivy League) and set the program record for three-pointers in a season, previously held by Erin Maher (80 in 1990-91). She led the team with an average of 13.4 points per game and led the league with 4.2 assists per game. Benzan was also one of the nation's best free-throw shooters this season, hitting 64-of-68 (94.1%) from the charity stripe.

Senior co-captain Destiny Nunley earned Best Defensive Player honors. Nunley averaged 1.6 blocks and a steal per game and paced the team with an average of 7.1 rebounds per game, with five defensive rebounds per contest. An All-Ivy League Honorable Mention selection, Nunley finished second on the team in scoring with 11.0 points per game.

The Most Improved Player Award went to freshman Maria Guramare. A native of Bedarrides, France who enrolled at Harvard early, Guramare became a regular contributor off the bench during Ivy League play. She had her best game at Yale on Feb. 24, scoring four points and adding three rebounds in six minutes.