May 22, 2018
WASHINGTON - Georgetown University senior Matt Behrens (Bronxville, N.Y./Bronxville) was named the Division I men's winner of the Yeardley Reynolds Love Unsung Hero Award, presented by the One Love Foundation. The award recognizes six winners, one from each division and gender, for their dedication, integrity, humility, hard work, community service, leadership, kindness and sportsmanship -all qualities that Yeardley Love exemplified throughout her life.
The Yeardley Reynolds Love ("YRL") Unsung Hero Award recognizes the accomplishments of student-athletes who help their teams achieve success in ways that may not be measured in goals, saves or ground balls. This honor places value on characteristics that are often undervalued in the competitively-charged environment of college lacrosse. The award recognizes the athlete who makes a significant contribution to the team while also bringing joy to teammates. The award recipients exhibit leadership as a positive role model and also are involved in community service. The recipients are awarded a sum of money from the One Love Foundation to be given to their favorite charity.
"We are so proud to honor these outstanding student-athletes with the Yeardley Love Unsung Hero Award," said Sharon Robinson, Yeardley Love's cousin and head of the Unsung Hero Award committee. "They epitomize the ideals of college athletes in that they are team-players, accomplished students, and active in their communities. We also want to thank all of the programs that have submitted nominees -- each was amazing in a different way. We have great hope for the future when we meet such exceptional future leaders."
On the field, Behrens has played in all 61 games during his four-year tenure with the Hoyas. He has had a breakout season as a senior, moving into a starting role and more than doubling his offensive production from the midfield and attack positions. During his time on the Hilltop, Behrens has scored 30 goals to go with 15 assists for 45 points. Twelve of his goals have come in man-up situations and he has notched one game-winner, while also hauling in 36 ground balls. Georgetown won the 2018 BIG EAST Championship for the first time in program history and has recorded 12 wins, the second most in a season all-time.
Off the field, Behrens has dedicated himself to many different avenues of service and leadership both within and outside of athletics. As a freshman and sophomore, he participated in and then served as a peer-leader for Young Leaders in Education about Diversity (YLEAD), a Georgetown pre-orientation program. As a YLEAD peer-leader, he created and lead workshops on the intersections of identities and dialoged with DC political and cultural leaders on issues of social and political justice.
In his sophomore year, Behrens was accepted as one of five fellows (class of 2018) to the Patrick Healy Fellowship, a community of Georgetown undergraduates who engage community service, education and programming initiatives that advocate for racial justice and social diversity on campus and within the DC community. In his junior year, he volunteered within L'Arche's Adams Morgan House, a community and workplace where people with intellectual and physical disabilities live, where he developed loving and mutual relationships and assisted with day-to-day operations. Throughout his four years, Behrens has served as a speaker for various campus and community events.
Within Georgetown's athletic community, Behrens has helped student-athletes and teams engage questions concerning social justice and team inclusion. In his role as the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee's inclusivity coordinator, he created, managed and executed SAAC's 2017 fall event: "Inclusive Leadership: A Discussion on Gender and Health in Sports." Behrens was also a speaker at the NCAA Inclusion Forum in April, presenting as part of the workshop Generation Next: Student-Athletes Leading Inclusive Action on Campus.
Following graduation, Behrens plans to continue his education on the Hilltop at Georgetown Law School.
Yeardley Reynolds Love ("YRL") Unsung Hero Award Finalists -- Winners in bold
Men's Division I:
Jake Pulver, Cornell University `18
Patrick Dallon, St. Joseph's University `18
Matt Behrens, Georgetown University `18
Men's Division II:
Devan Martinez, Chestnut Hill College `18
Men's Division III:
Stephen Ruppel, Lynchburg College `18
Chris Albright - Christopher Newport University `18
John Hunger - Hope College `18
Women's Division I:
Emma Lemay, Marist `20
Alex Gambacorta, Marquette University `18
Erika Mazer, Lafayette College `18
Emma Dunne, Yale University `18
Ellen Newtown, Canisius College `19
Women's Division II:
Shannon Mazza, Florida Southern College `18
Samantha Yurechek, Limestone College `18
Sarah Reilly, Assumption College `19
Women's Division III:
Lindsay Bateman, Averett University `21
Kellen Cannon, Marymount University `18
Erin Redmond, Rowan University `19
Megan Cannon, St. Mary's College `18
Katherine Lambert, University of Mary Washington `18