Since it was created in the mid-1990s, the IUP Athletic Hall of Fame has included eclectic classes spanning several generations and sports. The 17th class, which will be inducted September 15, is another fine example of that.
Fourteen athletes representing five sports will be welcomed into the hall of fame during the annual induction ceremony at Kovalchick Convention and Athletic Complex. In addition, a husband-and-wife team that has been a key part of IUP athletics will receive the honorary award.
The Class of 2012:
- Basketball: Jack Bizyak ’58, Rich Lynch ’77, M’80, and the late Mike Spingola ’66
- Football: Bill Dawson ’56, John Marefka ’56, Barry Gasdek ’64, Paul Neatrour Sr. ’67, M’75, Andrew “Jai” Hill ’03, and the late Nick Kish
- Softball: Julie Giacomin ’01
- Swimming: James Russell ’92
- Track and field: Ronald Steele ’77, Derek Brinkley ’02, and Amber Plowden ’02
- The honorary award will be given to Walt Lewis ’70 and Sue Lamm Lewis ’71, who live in Indiana and continue to be key members of the IUP community through tireless support.
After the induction ceremony and reception, the group will be honored at halftime of the IUP football game versus Lock Haven at George P. Miller Stadium.
For more information on the hall of fame, call Karyl Miller at 724-357-2057.
Once again, the IUP spring scene was a successful one, replete with championships and awards.
Jackie Hynson ’12 won the NCAA crown and set a Division II record in the 200 butterfly in March. Photo: Keith Boyer
Tops on that list was the performance turned in by senior Jackie Hynson ’12 at the NCAA Division II swimming and diving championships March 16 in Mansfield, Texas. A native of King George, Virginia, Hynson not only won the NCAA crown in the 200 butterfly, she did so by breaking the Division II record in the event—in 1 minute, 58.54 seconds.
The season ended in spectacular fashion for Hynson, who also earned All-America honors in two other events. She capped it all by winning the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference Top 10 Award, given out annually to athletes who are successful in the classroom as well as athletics. And, at the annual All-American banquet, Hynson and Ethan Robinson (men’s basketball) were named IUP’s Scholar Athletes of the Year.
On the playing field, the women’s softball team turned in a stellar season. Under head coach Bill Graham, the Crimson Hawks repeated as PSAC softball champs by rallying twice to stun Bloomsburg in the championship round. They then advanced to the Atlantic Regional, where they bowed out in the finals to Kutztown. The Crimson Hawks finished 31-14-1 overall, including a 10-2 mark in home games. Two players, Megan McCormick and Monica Iachini, were named to the all-region team.
The IUP lacrosse team had its best season to date by advancing all the way to the PSAC quarterfinals before losing to Mercyhurst. Coach Mindy Richmond’s team finished with an 11-6 record, tying the school record for wins in a season, and set a record for conference wins, with seven.
For up-to-the-minute news on IUP sports, visit IUP Athletics. There you’ll find all the newest news Namedroppers can’t bring you because of deadline constraints.
In track and field, the Crimson Hawks sent two athletes to the NCAA Championships in Pueblo, Colorado. On the men’s side, Ross Moreau placed 15th in the shot put, with a heave of 51 feet, 3¼ inches. For the women, Laurie Ajavon took 17th in the long jump, with a mark of 17-9½. At the end of the season, six members of the track and field team were selected to the all-region team.
In what has become a rite of spring, the IUP golf team dominated play en route to a berth in the NCAA Championships, where coach Fred Joseph’s team placed 14th overall, highlighted by a fifth-place finish by Zack Kempa.
The baseball team didn’t reach the playoffs, but it still finished with a solid 25-23-1 record under head coach Jeff Ditch. Junior shortstop Robbie Zinsmeister was named a third-team All-American after batting .326 while sporting a 3.73 grade-point average, and four other players were named to the all-region team.
On the baseball diamond, Kevin McMullen ’90 recently completed another successful season as an associate head coach at the University of Virginia. The Cavaliers were ranked nationally much of the season and finished with a 39- 19-1 record and a berth in the NCAA tournament.
In the basketball coaching ranks, former IUP player Rob Norris ’99 was recently hired as an assistant coach for the Eastern Michigan University women’s team after a threeyear stint as a men’s assistant at Canisius. Also, former IUP head coach Kurt Kanaskie, who was inducted into the IUP Athletic Hall of Fame last year, was hired in May as an assistant coach at Virginia Tech. Before joining the Hokies, Kanaskie spent several seasons at Penn State and Navy.
Two successful high school football coaches were in transition periods during the offseason. John Franco ’78, M’88 was hired as the head coach at Altoona High School after coaching 18 seasons at nearby Tyrone High School, where his teams went 190-37 and won the 1999 PIAA Class AA state championship. Late last year, the Associated Press named Franco the Class AA Coach of the Year, and his son Steve, the team’s quarterback, the Class AA Player of the Year. Franco’s son Johnny was a safety on the IUP football team in 2010 and 2011. Also, Neil Gordon ’71, M’72 resigned from his post at Shaler High School in suburban Pittsburgh. In 21 seasons as a head coach at Shaler and Penn Hills, Gordon amassed a 183-87-2 record, and his 1995 Penn Hills team won the PIAA Class AAAA crown.
In professional football, former All-American Akwasi Owusu-Ansah is back with the Dallas Cowboys. Owusu-Ansah was selected by the Cowboys in the fourth round of the 2010 draft but was released last season and caught on with the Jacksonville Jaguars before being let go again. His stay in free agency was short-lived, though, as Dallas scooped up Owusu-Ansah the same day Jacksonville let him go.
The Pittsburgh Power, of the Arena Football League, had two former IUP players on the roster this spring, Beau Elliott and Tyre Young, while four football alumni played for the Johnstown Generals of the United Indoor Football League: Anthony Cellitti ’08, Aaron Princes ’07, Terrill Simms ’10, and Lamont Stephens. Former IUP great Mike Marshall ’00 became the team’s coach midway through the season. Longtime NFL executive Tom Donahoe ’69 was hired by the Philadelphia Eagles in May as the team’s senior football advisor.
In his 23rd season as the men’s swimming and diving coach at the College of New Jersey, Brian Bishop ’84, M’91 recently wrapped up another successful season in the pool, highlighted by the sixth-place finish of one of his relay teams at the NCAA Division III championships. In addition to his role as a coach, Bishop serves as the school’s associate director of athletics.
After a career spanning more than 30 years, Tom Labuff ’74 was inducted last fall into the Gateway High School Sports Hall of Fame. At the suburban Pittsburgh school, Labuff coached track and field, cross country, and wrestling and was an English teacher.
In his second season as the head coach and 18th overall at the University of Missouri, track coach Brett Halter ’93 guided the Tigers’ women to a seventh-place finish and the men to 10th at the Big 12 Conference track and field championships. This season, the Missouri women’s team shattered four school records.
Two recent IUP graduates were recently hired as assistant track and field coaches: Brianna Liebold ’11 at Cheyney University of Pennsylvania and Jorge Medina ’09 at West Alabama University. At the NCAA Southeast Regional Cross Country championships in April, the University of South Carolina team placed 24th overall under veteran coach Stan Rosenthal ’75.
After eight seasons as the head coach at Tennessee State University, Joyce Maudie ’81, M’87 recently completed her second season at the helm of the softball program at Roger Williams University in Bristol, Rhode Island. The Hawks finished 11-7 in Commonwealth Coast Conference play this season.
In her first season as an assistant coach at Tusculum (Tennessee) College, Julie Huebner ’06 helped the Pioneers match the school record for wins in a season, at 32. Huebner went to Tusculum after three seasons as an assistant at East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania.
Members of the 1971 IUP baseball team, which finished third in the NAIA World Series—the best finish in school history—returned to Indiana in April to be honored during an IUP-Lock Haven game. Front row, from left: Anthony Biviano ’71, Bob Gerhart ’71, Pete Cortese ’72, Paul Maljan ’73, Pete Larioni ’71, Paul Petroski ’72, and John Morris ’71. Second row: Bob Isenberg ’73, Mike Priolo ’74, Joe Raglani ’72, retired faculty member and former coach Arch Moore, John Johnston ’73, Bob Sampson ’73, Tom Stephens ’72, and Paul Jankowski ’73.
Photo: James Nestor/Indiana Gazette
More from the Summer 2012 Issue of IUP Magazine
what does IUP's future look like? IUP President Mike Driscoll arrives eager to start the discussion.
Plans for new building look to the collaborative, digital future.
Michael Driscoll sends his greetings to IUP alumni, faculty and staff members, students, and friends.
About 700 companies have benefited from the smarts of the SBDC team.
About 6,800 students were involved in productions last year.
A historic 29th national ranking says success in any language.
This year's recipients are movers and shakers in professions from magazine journalism to the National Guard.
Memorable moments in the 2011-2012 academic year, in a video recap.
Some of the more unusual memorabilia that alumni have lovingly donated to IUP.