University of Georgia senior and hunt seat rider Emma Mandarino soars over a jump aboard Aragorn. No. 8 UGA hosted No. 2 Texas A&M on Feb. 9th, 2019 at the University of Georgia Equestrian Complex in Bishop, Georgia; after a neck and neck battle between the two teams for most of the meet, the Bulldogs gained the lead and won with a final score of 12-8. (Photo/ Kathryn Skeean)

Emma Mandarino, a three-time First Team Academic All-American and Equitation Over Fences National Champion, was named as the University of Georgia’s nominee for the NCAA Woman of the Year award on Wednesday, June 26.

The award recognizes graduating female college athletes who have excelled in academics, athletics, service and leadership throughout their collegiate careers. Georgia track and field member Keturah Orji was named the 2018 NCAA Woman of the Year and Mandarino is the first nominee from the UGA equestrian team.

Mandarino — graduated Summa Cum Laude with a Bachelor's of Business Administration in Accounting in May — became a consistent competitor in Georgia’s Equitation Over Fences lineup and earned six Most Outstanding Performance honors as a Bulldog. She is the eighth leading scorer for Equitation Over Fences in Georgia equestrian history.

The Bedminster, New Jersey, native walked on the team as a freshman and grew to be a two-year captain in her junior and senior seasons. She led the Bulldogs to back-to-back Southeastern Conference Championships in 2017 and 2018, and the team finished Reserve Champions at the National Collegiate Equestrian Association National Championship three-straight seasons.

Additionally, she is a five-time UGA Presidential Scholar, as well as a three-time NCEA First Team Academic All-American.  She was the SEC Boyd McWhorter Scholarship nominee from Georgia this year and earned the Bernard Ramsey Scholarship for Academic and Athletic Excellence for having a GPA within the top 10 of all UGA student-athletes.

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