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Purdue's Clemons earns award

Purdue women's basketball forward Liza Clemons will be recognized for her ability to overcome injury and personal loss.

The former Elmhurst and Snider standout is one of four recipients of the Brady Sports Achievement Award, which honors Indiana student-athletes who have overcome injury or hardship.

Clemons along with Wabash's Cahmelan Porter, Bishop Noll Institute's Nick Anglin and Washington Catholic High School's Sam Baker will receive their awards 7 p.m. April 24 at the Indiana Roof Ballroom in Indianapolis. The award was established by the Methodist Sports Medicine Research and Education Foundation and is sponsored by ATI Physical Therapy.

Clemons started 29 of 31 games and averaged 9.4 points and 5.5 rebounds for Purdue as a junior as the Boilermakers reached the second round of the NCAA tournament before falling 73-66 to Oklahoma State on March 24.

Clemons had to deal with the loss of fiancé, Johnny Lee Upshaw, as she entered her junior season. Upshaw was gunned down in the 2000 block of Hobson Road and pronounced dead at 2:44 p.m. Oct. 4.

The emotional loss came on the heals of physical ailments that Clemons battled during her career.

She suffered foot and ankle injuries in high school, which required surgery before she came to Purdue.

Clemons suffered a shoulder injury as a freshman, which required surgery after the season. She played in 20 of 34 games in her first season, averaging 1.2 points in 5.3 minutes per game.

Clemons played 26 of 34 games as a sophomore, averaging 1.7 points and 1.1 rebounds in 5.5 minutes per game.

"The reason we are so strong is because of Liza Clemons," Purdue coach Sharon Versyp said in a statement.

For more information on the award show, go to www.methodistsports.com/aboutus/events.html.

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