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Sender Named Ireland Award Winner

July 17, 2017 LAS VEGAS ( - The UNLV Athletic Department announced Monday afternoon that women's soccer senior Lily Sender has been named the winner of this season's Bill Ireland Award.

The honor is given annually to a student-athlete who shines brightest in their respective sport while competing against Nevada, Reno as part of the Governor's Series presented by NV Energy and Barrick Gold.

The Ireland honoree, selected through a vote by members of the UNLV Athletics Communications Office, must come from a Rebel team that won its competition vs. the Wolf Pack during the year, must have made a significant impact on that outcome and also be in good academic standing.

Sender, a native of Honolulu, Hawaii, turned in one of the best seasons in UNLV Women's Soccer history during her senior campaign this past fall. She set records for most goals (15) and points (38) in a single season en route to becoming the program's third Mountain West Offensive Player of the Year and first NSCAA All-American. The mechanical engineering major, who led the team with a 3.58 GPA, was also honored as the program's second CoSIDA Academic All-American and NSCAA Scholar All-American.
Sender's best performance of the year came in the regular season finale at Reno when she netted the first Rebel hat trick since 2010 in a 4-1 victory over the Wolf Pack on October 28, 2016. Her trio of goals gave the Rebels a 3-0 lead early in the second half, securing their first Mountain West Regular Season Championship since 2007.

She is the second women's soccer student-athlete to earn the honor since the award's inception during the 2012-13 academic year. The first was Jenn Wolfe, who was named the 2013-14 winner after lifting the Rebels to a double overtime victory with a 35-yard golden goal with 11 seconds remaining, keeping the contest from ending in a tie.

The award is named in honor of Mr. Bill Ireland, who was deeply tied to the history of the Wolf Pack and Rebels athletics programs. A 1952 graduate of the University of Nevada, Reno, Ireland was the Wolf Pack's first baseball coach (1961-67). After his time at UNR, he went on to UNLV where he became the Rebels first football coach (1968-72) and later served as athletics director (1973-80). Ireland is also credited with helping create the Fremont Cannon.


2017 - Lily Sender, Women's Soccer
2016 - Ryan McAleenan, Football
2015 - Janine Petmecky, Softball
2014 - Jenn Wolfe, Women's Soccer
2013 - Buddy Borden, Baseball

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