June 12, 2006
CINCINNATI - Former Xavier University women's tennis player Lauren Clary was one of 13 honorees at the eighth annual National Sportsmanship Awards dinner, which was held on Saturday, June 10, at the Chase Park Plaza in St. Louis. The National Sportsmanship Awards honor the nation's top athletes and administrators who exemplify outstanding sportsmanship, citizenship, ethical conduct and community service. Other honorees at this year's event included U.S. Olympic speedskater Joey Cheek, Grant Hill of the Orlando Magic, John Smoltz of the Atlanta Braves and Taj McWilliams-Franklin of the Connecticut Sun.
Clary, a 2005 Xavier graduate, was one of this year's honorees after being just one of two student-athletes in the nation to earn the NCAA's Sportsmanship Award in 2005. The four-year starter for the Musketeers left XU as the most decorated player in the history of the program, which included a career singles record of 115-25 (.821) and a mark of 103-27 (.792) in doubles with all of those matches coming at the No. 1 position.
The Terre Haute, Ind. native was recognized for more than just her accomplishments on the court as she continually gave back to the community whether it was in her hometown or in the city of Cincinnati. Clary was a four-year participant in XU's Take Back the Night rally to raise awareness for domestic violence and was a regular volunteer at the Rape Crisis and Abuse Center of Hamilton County. She also joined up with her sister, Kristen, in the Chicago Distance Half Marathon to benefit the Family Self-Sufficiency Dental Fund of Terre Haute.
Clary was a four-time All-Conference selection. She was the 2002 Atlantic 10 Performer and Rookie of the Year, becoming just the third player ever to win both awards in the same season. She graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor's degree in psychology and was a three-time Atlantic 10 Student-Athlete of the Year in women's tennis (2003, 2004, 2005), becoming just the second person in A-10 history to earn three Student-Athlete of the Year awards in a single sport since the award was instituted at the start of the 1999-2000 season. Clary recently finished her first year at Saint Louis University where she is enrolled in the Clinical Psychology Doctoral Program.
The eighth annual awards dinner was co-hosted by the St. Louis Sports Commission and the Citizenship Through Sports Alliance (CTSA). The CTSA is the largest coalition of professional and amateur athletics organizations in the United States focused on character in sport. Its members include Major League Baseball, the NCAA, NHL, NBA, WNBA, and NAIA, among others. The CTSA is committed to promoting positive behavior in youth sports by harnessing the collective resources of major U.S. sports organizations to provide practical and proven tools for parents and coaches in youth sports.