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Yellowjackets' Wilson named to first team Academic All-America

Niya Wilson was recognized for her skill on the soccer field and in the classroom.

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UW-Superior’s Niya Wilson (13) beats Northland’s Kristen Vensland (19) to the ball in the second half of the match at the NBC Spartan Sports Complex in Superior on Tuesday, Oct. 12, 2021. Wilson was named to the first team Academic All-America by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).
Jed Carlson / File / Superior Telegram
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A Wisconsin-Superior soccer player is being recognized for her achievements on and off the field.

Niya Wilson, a business administration major, was named a first team Academic All-American by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA).

The CoSIDA Academic All-America program recognizes the nation’s top student-athletes for their combined performance on the field and in the classroom.

Wilson is among 33 women selected for the three Academic All-America teams among more than 440 institutions that play NCAA Division III women’s soccer.

“I wasn’t really aware it was an award until I was selected to the all-district team,” Wilson said.

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She said she learned about the recognition through her coach, and knew she was eligible for the recognition, but she didn’t give it a second thought until she was named to the first team.

“That was kind of cool,” Wilson said.

The university nominates student-athletes, who must play in 50% of a team’s games and have a cumulative grade point average of 3.30 or higher to be eligible to go on the ballot in the region. Sports information directors of the region review everyone on the ballot and vote for a certain number to be placed in the All-Region team.

The directors then pair down the list to name the Academic All-America teams.

Wilson, a sophomore, was the UMAC Offensive Player of the Year and a first-team selection in 2021. She finished eighth in the NCAA in goals (20), sixth in points (51) and ninth in assists (11). She also ranked third in the country with eight game-winning goals.

She led the Yellowjackets to their first conference regular season and tournament championships in the 29-year history of the program in 2021, finishing the season with a school-record 18-4-1 overall mark.

Wilson said she’s been playing soccer since she could walk.

“I’ve played a lot of other sports in my life, but this is the only one I stuck with and have a true passion for,” she said.

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