University of Mary Washington senior women's lacrosse defensive standout Kate Tarr (Manchester, Mass./Manchester Essex) was selected by the Capital Athletic Conference athletic directors and sports information directors for the 2009 CAC Unsung Hero Award.
Tarr is the fourth Mary Washington student-athlete to win the CAC Unsung Hero Award since its inception in 1997. Anne Wenthe captured the honor in 1998, Stephanie Wichard won the award in 1999 and Ryan Wellner was the honoree in 2000. Wenthe and Wichard with both women's soccer standouts; Wellner excelled for the men's lacrosse program.
To be eligible for the CAC Unsung Hero Award, a student-athlete must demonstrate success and be an integral part of the team's success, demonstrate leadership skills and the ability to sacrifice personal goals for the good of the team or program.
Tarr is a historic preservation major at UMW and a starting defender on the Eagles nationally-ranked women's lacrosse team. She helped the Eagles finish third in the CAC regular season, advance to the conference championship game and earn a bid to the 2009 NCAA Division III Championship Tournament.
Early in the 2008-09 academic year, Tarr has undergone extensive tests and was found to be a match for a kidney donation to her father, who is a Type 2 diabetic and has had a heart attack, two small strokes, a triple by-pass surgery and renal kidney failure. She traveled back and forth to her home in Massachusetts for a battery of tests, preparing for the donation, while leading the Eagles to 14 victories and the program's seventh NCAA Tournament appearance since 2000.
"Kate put in the work to become the head and heart of our defense this year," said UMW women's lacrosse coach Dana Hall. "Her unselfish play was critical to the success the team enjoyed this season. She has an innate understanding of what it takes to accomplish something as a team. She is a leader on and off the field - always looking out for others and wanting the best for everyone."
"As a member of our program, she always put others before herself leading by example and being a role model to younger players. The ultimate unselfish act a person can do is to help others unconditionally. This is a testament to how involved and caring she is to those around her. I believe Kate is our Unsung Hero in ways that aren't measured in statistics or awards," Hall said.