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Bears' Latino Youth Honors nominee selected as league finalist

Latino Heritage Youth Finalist Yeniah Matos Delgado
Latino Heritage Youth Finalist Yeniah Matos Delgado

The NFL and the Hispanic Heritage Foundation announced on Monday the eight finalists for the inaugural "NFL Latino Youth Honors," which recognizes outstanding high school tackle and flag football athletes from around the country for their academic and athletic excellence.

One of the Bears' two nominees, Yeniah Matos Delgado from Morton East High School in Cicero, Ill., was announced as one of the eight finalists out of 56 student-athletes who were nominated.

"The Chicago Bears have been recognizing exceptional Latino youth for several years," Bears manager of youth and high school football Gustavo Silva said. "We are thrilled that the Hispanic Heritage Foundation, in partnership with the NFL, has elevated this award to a league-wide initiative.

"We are excited and grateful that Yeniah Matos Delgado was selected as a finalist. She is one of two exceptional youth that we nominated. She is a terrific representative for all the exceptional Latino youth in our market that are excelling in the classroom, the community and on the football field. Yeniah's story is one of perseverance, service, and gratitude."

Delgado is a senior at Morton East and is the captain and starting quarterback of the girls flag football team. Born in Las Piedras, Puerto Rico, Delgado is proud of her heritage, which was instilled in her by her mother and grandparents. The Bears have been continuous supporters of girls flag football in Illinois as the sport looks to become IHSA-sanctioned in the upcoming months.

To make Delgado's experience more special, Bears President & CEO Kevin Warren surprised her with two tickets to the Super Bowl on Nov. 20 when she visited Halas Hall.

Delgado, along with Kyle Ramirez from Maine West High School, received the Bears' 2023 Latino Youth Leader Award earlier this season, which honored the pair's achievements in their schools and in the community. Ramirez, a senior and three-year starter for Maine West's football team, was the second Bears Latino Youth Honors nominee.

Delgado and Ramirez were celebrated at the Bears Latino Heritage Month game on Oct. 1 and served as honorary captains.

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Delgado and the other seven finalists will receive a grant award that can be used for college. They will also participate in a variety of events in Las Vegas during Super Bowl LVIII Week. The national winner will also be announced that week.

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