Mikayla Williams Named Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar
FAIRFAX, Va. — University of California San Diego women’s basketball standout Mikayla Williams has earned Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar of the Year First-Team honors for women’s basketball, the publication Diverse: Issues in Higher Education recently announced.
Williams becomes the second Triton in as many years to receive the accolade, after Justin Zhang the was the 2018 recipient for men’s tennis and one of three finalists for male sports scholar of the year.
Diverse Magazine sponsors the Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar Awards to honor undergraduate students who have excelled in the classroom as well as athletics. Vanderbilt University football standout Khari Blasingame earned Male Scholar of the Year, while University of Kentucky swimming standout Asia Seidt was named Female Scholar of the Year.
In addition to performance, Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholars must maintain a cumulative grade-point-average (GPA) of at least 3.5, be at least a sophomore academically and demonstrate a commitment to community service and student leadership.
Inspired by tennis legend Arthur Ashe Jr.’s commitment to education as well as his love for tennis, U.S. colleges and universities are invited to participate in this annual awards program by nominating their outstanding sports scholars.
A native of Meath Park, Sask., Canada, Williams is majoring in public health at Roosevelt College with a 3.89 cumulative grade-point-average. She earned Google Cloud Academic All-America First-Team honors on March 12.
Williams joined rare company on the court this season as well, being named Women’s Basketball Coaches’ Association (WBCA) All-America First-Team on March 25. In the process, she became only the seventh Triton to achieve All-America status.
Williams has also been named to the D2CCA All-America First Team, earned D2CCA West Region Player of the Year, CCAA Player of the Year, CCAA Tournament MVP and was named to the CCAA All-Tournament Team. The forward eclipsed 1,000-career points in January and has scored 1,349 for her career.
Williams finished the season averaging a team-high 19.3 points per game, which also led the CCAA and ranked 24th in the nation. In addition, Williams averaged 10.5 rebounds with 16 double-doubles while shooting a CCAA-best .549 percent from the field and .809 percent from the free-throw line.
The Tritons finished 30-1 overall, including a program-best 30-game winning streak to begin the season. UC San Diego won the CCAA Tournament championship for the second time in program history and advanced to the NCAA West Region Semifinals for the second-consecutive year.
About UC San Diego Athletics
With 30 national team championships, nearly 150 individual titles and the top student-athlete graduation rate among Division II institutions in the United States, the UC San Diego intercollegiate athletics program annually ranks as one of the most successful in the country. The Tritons sponsor 23 intercollegiate sport programs that compete on the NCAA Division I and II levels and, in summer 2020, will transition into full Division I status as a member of the Big West Conference. UC San Diego student-athletes exemplify the academic ideals of one of the world's preeminent institutions, graduating at an average rate of 91 percent. A total of 80 Tritons have earned Academic All-America honors, while 36 have earned prestigious NCAA Post Graduate Scholarships. In competition, more than 1,300 UC San Diego student-athletes have earned All-America honors.
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