The Collegian
Wednesday, October 21, 2020

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Two Athletes Nominated for NCAA Woman of the Year Award

<p>Women's basketball's Jaide Hinds-Clarke (left) and swim and diver's Hannah Gouger (right) are up for the NCAA's women of the year award. <em>Photos courtesy of Jimmy Quinn and Ben Wasserstein</em></p>

Women's basketball's Jaide Hinds-Clarke (left) and swim and diver's Hannah Gouger (right) are up for the NCAA's women of the year award. Photos courtesy of Jimmy Quinn and Ben Wasserstein

Two University of Richmond athletes were nominated for the NCAA Woman of the Year award: Jaide Hinds-Clarke of women's basketball and Hannah Gouger of swimming and diving.

Established in 1991, the NCAA Woman of the Year program recognizes women in collegiate athletics and their excellence in their sport, academics and in their school's community.

To be eligible for the award, nominees are appointed by their member institutions and then reviewed by the respective conferences, according to the NCAA's requirements. Per NCAA, the selection committee then chooses 30 women-- 10 from each division-- before choosing the top nine finalists, three from each division. On Nov. 1, all 30 honorees will be recognized along with the winner of the NCAA woman of the year award, according to the NCAA's website. 

In Hinds-Clarke’s final year of college basketball, she was named to the Atlantic 10 All-Conference Third Team and received an A-10 Player of the Week award. She was also the leader in scoring and rebounds, averaging 11.8 points and 6 rebounds per game. Hinds-Clarke concluded the 2019-20 season second in the A-10 with 61 steals. She is ranked 17th in school history with 1,130 career points, according to athletic records.

Off the court, Hinds-Clarke committed time to the UR community. 

"Community service has always meant a lot to me," Hinds-Clarke said. "I am thankful that the University of Richmond has so many community service opportunities and that I was able to get connected outside of our immediate campus community." 

As co-founder of UR's Shades of Pride Hinds-Clarke created a space for LGBTQ+ students of color. Shades of Pride is a campus organization for Queer students of color, creating a dedicated space for sharing experiences in navigating the intersections of race and queer identities. 

"I am excited to see what the new leaders do and put together, and I am excited to serve in a different, more hands-off role," she said. 

Women's basketball head coach Aaron Roussell said Hinds-Clarke had maximized her opportunities on campus and gotten more out of her college experience than most students even dream of. 

As an intern at the Virginia Center for Inclusive Communities, Hinds-Clarke was a facilitator for a week-long social justice retreat for high school students, said Hinds-Clarke. She received the Dr. Leonard S. Goldberg Award for Good Citizenship, the James A. Sartain Award, the Jones Impact Award for Black Excellence and a Diversity Richmond Black & Bold Award for leadership. 

"The sky is the limit for Jaide, and I am eager to see where her journey takes her," Russell said. 

According to Richmond athletics' archives, Gouger is one of only three athletes to have won two different events in all four years of eligibility.

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Gouger said she is extremely grateful for her time at Richmond. "I’m very honored to have been nominated for this prestigious award and I couldn't have done this without my teammates, coaches and family," said Gouger.

Teammate and friend, 2020 graduate Lexie Gilbert, said that Gouger was not only always pushing herself, but all of her teammates every day. "Hannah was one of the greatest training partners I’ve ever had," said Gilbert. 

Gouger is a four-time Atlantic 10 100- and 200-meter backstroke champion and was named the 2019 Atlantic 10 Championships Most Outstanding Performer. Gouger was also a 2019 NCAA Championships qualifier and a two-time U.S. Olympic trial qualifier. Her first year at UR, Gouger was named the 2017 Most Outstanding Rookie.

Aside from her athletic accomplishments, Gouger volunteered at the Youth Life Foundation of Richmond where she taught swim lessons to at-risk youth during her time at UR, Gouger said. She said it had been a humbling experience.

Gouger said, "I’m grateful for the lessons that these kids taught me and hope that they feel the same way."

"I hope that I can continue to have a positive impact on the swim and dive team, athletic department and the entire university,” Gouger said. 

Contact sports editor Grace Mittl at grace.mittl@richmond.edu.

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