Press release from the University of North Carolina at Asheville:
UNC Asheville track & field student-athlete Claudia Prieto has been nominated for the prestigious NCAA Woman of the Year award.
“It’s an extremely well-deserved honor for Claudia who has been the ideal, model student-athlete over her entire time at UNC Asheville,” said UNC Asheville Track & Field Head Coach Joel Williams. “We’re very pleased that she is receiving such recognition, we are also glad to have her back on our team for one more school year!”
This honor adds to a lengthy list of accolades for Prieto during her time as a Bulldog. In 2021-22, she broke the program long jump record, both indoor and outdoor, multiple times and was named the Big South’s Scholar-Athlete of the Year following both the indoor and outdoor seasons. She also was named to the All-Big South Second Team in the long jump at both the Big South Indoor and Outdoor Track & Field Championships.
In addition to these accomplishments, Prieto joined a short list of Bulldogs to ever qualify for the NCAA Championships. Seeded 48th in the long jump entering the NCAA East Prelims, Prieto ended up finishing 23rd in the field with a leap of 5.92-meters.
“Congratulations to Claudia from her entire Bulldog family,” stated UNC Asheville Athletics Director Janet R. Cone. “From her first semester at UNC Asheville, she clearly set a course for being successful as a scholar, athlete, and person. She is truly deserving of this recognition, and we are so very proud of her.”
This marks the 32nd year of the Woman of the Year Award program. 577 student-athletes across all three levels of the NCAA were nominated this year and the nominees boast an average GPA of 3.8. The award signifies four pillars: academics, athletics, service and leadership.