Township resident Karen Prihoda in running for NCAA Woman of the Year Award

Karen Prihoda
Karen Prihoda dove into her academics and athletics with equal zeal and is now one of 148 finalists for the NCAA Woman of the Year Award (Photo courtesy 

By Rich Fisher

Aug. 10: Karen Prihoda’s collegiate softball career may be completed, but her substantial body of work is still being recognized.

Prihoda, a Hamilton Township product and Lawrenceville School grad, is one of two Wagner College scholar-athletes chosen by respective NCAA conferences and a selection committees as one of 148 women nominated for the 2019 NCAA Woman of the Year Award.

Karen Prihoda-Wagner College.

The former Hamilton Hurricane star was chosen from a pool of 585 nominees and she and Wagner golfer Pascalle  Tego are the lone representatives from the Northeast Conference remaining. The 148 nominees come from 20 sports across all three NCAA divisions.

“Pascalle and Karen are two student-athletes that have truly excelled during their time as Seahawks,” Wagner Associate Athletic Director & Senior Woman Administrator Tatum Colitz said. “They are exemplary role models in all facets of the student-athlete experience, and this incredible honor is a culmination of their hard work and dedication.”

Prihoda finished her four-year career as one of the most decorated softball players in Seahawks’ history.  She was named an All-NEC selection for the fourth consecutive season with a .374 average and 45 runs scored, both good for fourth in the NEC, and her 28 stolen bases led the conference by a wide margin.

For her career, she hit .371 with 222 hits, 149 runs, 38 doubles, five triples, 15 homers and 81 RBI. She tied the program’s career record for stolen bases with 73.

In the classroom. Prihoda graduated Summa Cum Laude with a 3.92 GPA while majoring in Spanish/Education en route to earning CoSIDA Academic All-District honors for the second straight season.

The Top 30 honorees, comprising 10 women from each division, will be named by the Woman of the Year selection committee in September. The selection committee will then narrow the pool to nine finalists — with three from each division — in early October. From those finalists will emerge the Woman of the Year.

About The Author

Rich Fisher has been around the Hamilton Township sports scene for so long that he actually got Rich Giallella’s autograph when Giallella was still a player! Proud product of Hamilton YMCA and Lou Gehrig baseball leagues and former teammate of Jim Maher on a very average Barton & Cooney rec basketball team, Fish graduated from Nottingham Junior High and Steinert High school and has covered township sports since 1980. His goal in life is to convince Maria Prato that Jersey tomatoes are at least 100 times better than California tomatoes.