via UF press release, by Katie Callahan
GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Sophomore defender Emily Lortz earned the IWLCA Community Awareness award for her service to the Gainesville community and surrounding areas.
The individual Community Awareness Award recognizes those student-athletes who have contributed significantly to their community in a given academic year. These students have given their time and energy to support and develop athlete-community relations and have distinguished themselves from their peers.
Lortz undertook several service efforts during her sophomore year at the University of Florida. She was instrumental in the planning of the Special Olympics Race for Inclusion this past December and contributed to Gator Tracks, an initiative that helped wrap and deliver shoes to kids at Williams Elementary and Lake Forest Elementary.
Alongside her lacrosse family, Lortz has adopted a young lady battling cancer through the Friends of Jaclyn Program. She has selflessly devoted her time to helping others such as loading pallets at the Ukraine Humanitarian Drive, setting up a security system at St. Johns Church, and participating in the Gators Lunch Buddies Mentor Program where she had lunch and mentored students at Lake Forest Elementary.
Lortz also cheered on and interacted with individuals with special needs during the drive-thru Night to Shine Prom event this past February.
On the field, Lortz saw action in 11 games during her sophomore campaign, serving as a member of Florida’s defense that finished 10th in the nation and first in the conference, allowing only 9.45 goals per game.
She caused her first collegiate turnover against Arizona State on March 27 and tied her career-high in groundballs twice this season (Kennesaw State and Stetson).
Lortz is the first Gator to earn the award in program history.