GLASSBORO, NJ – Nine former athletes and the 1978 national championship baseball team have been selected for the 2011 Rowan University-Glassboro State Sports Hall of Fame. This year’s induction will be held on Sunday, October 23 during the school’s Homecoming
The 2011 inductees are: Jennifer Denby (basketball), 1999; Kara Gilligan (softball and lacrosse), 1996; David “Chip” Humphrey (diving), 1977; Shane Larkin (soccer), 2001; Van Lynch (wrestling), 1971; Dianne (Giebel) Nuess (swimming), 1976; Becky Peterson (field hockey and lacrosse), 2004; posthumous Alex Stepanow (soccer), 1968 and Christy (Grozalis) Tuper (swimming), 1994. The honorees were chosen from more than 100 nominations of outstanding athletes and coaches. The University’s Sports Hall of Fame has a total of 139 members.
The ceremony and brunch reception will be held at 1 p.m. in the Eynon Ballroom of the University’s Chamberlain Student Center. The cost is $30 for adults, $15 for children and children under three years old are free. Reservations can be made by contacting the Alumni Relations Office at 856-256-5400.
The inductees’ accomplishments are:
Jennifer Denby (Berlin, NJ) – A guard, Denby is the school’s all-time leading scorer with 1,806 points from 1994-98. In 106 career games, she averaged 17.0 points and 9.7 rebounds per game. Denby currently holds 12 Prof records including points in a season (606, 1996-97) and a career (1,806), rebounds in a career (1,027) and steals in a game (10, three times), season (178, 1996-97) and career (505). In addition, Denby has the mark for field goals in a season (230, 1996-97) and career (723).
Her senior and junior seasons, she was selected to the Kodak Division III All-America team, the New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) Player of the Year and to the All-Conference first team. In 1998, Denby was named to the NCAA East at Atlantic Sectional All-Tournament team and the Eastern College Athletic Conference Metro NY/NJ All-Star first team. She was also chosen the 1997 ECAC Metro NY/NJ Player of the Year and to the All-Star first team. Denby was honored as the conference’s 1997 Female Athlete of the Year.
During her career, Rowan compiled a 100-14 record, won three NJAC titles (1998, 1997, 1996) and advanced to the NCAA tournament three times. In her senior year, the Profs posted a 27-4 mark and finished fourth in the national championship tournament.
Kara Gilligan (Providence, RI) – Gilligan was a catcher for the Profs’ softball team for four years (1991-1994) and she was the lacrosse team’s goalie for one (1995). She finished her career with a .382 batting average, 140 RBIs and 98 runs scored. Gilligan holds the school record for total bases (11) in a game. She shares the University marks for walks (4) and home runs (2) in a game and games played in a season (49).
In the career statistics, Gilligan ranks second in doubles (49) and she is fourth in slugging percentage (.570) and RBIs (140). In addition, Gilligan is sixth in batting average (.382), hits (190) and home runs (9). Her senior season, she was named to the National Softball Coaches Association All-America first team, the Mid-Atlantic All-Region first team and the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Championship All-Tournament team. Gilligan was also a member of the NJAC All-Conference team and the conference’s All-Tournament team.
Over her four years, the softball team compiled a 125-49 record. In 1994, the Profs (37-9) won the NJAC Championship and advanced to the NCAA Championship Tournament. Rowan (35-14) finished fourth at the 1993 national championship tournament.
In 1995, Gilligan totaled 170 saves in 16 games for a 57.0 save percentage. She had an 8.3 goals against average and earned Brine/Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association Division III South Atlantic All-Region second team honors. Rowan ended the season with a 13-3 record and played in the first round of the NCAA Championship Tournament.
David “Chip” Humphrey (Sebastian, FL) – An All-American, Humphrey was a diver for the swim team for four seasons (1973-74, 1974-75, 1975-76, 1976-77). His senior year, he finished sixth in the three-meter diving at the NCAA Championships with 407.28 points. He also took 12th place on the one-meter board with 378.15 points.
Humphrey qualified for the 1976 NCAA Championships. He placed 36th (81.18 points) in the three-meter diving and 55th (60.42 points) in the one-meter. At the NCAA Championships, the Profs came in 10th in 1976 and they were 28th in 1977. Rowan finished 12-2 in his senior year and the team had an 11-3 mark in 1976.
Humphrey graduated from the University with a bachelor’s in health and physical education and he earned his master’s in educational leadership at Nova Southeastern University. He went on to become a professional high diver and aquatic entertainer. He was the 1980 Acapulco Cliff Diving Champion of the World that was televised on CBS’ Wide World of Sports. Humphrey has worked and performed in 22 countries on four continents. His personal record for a high dive is 130 feet in Hong Kong (1986).
Shane Larkin (Stratham, NH) – A midfielder, Larkin played for the soccer team from 1997-2000. In 89 career games, he totaled 69 points with 20 goals and 29 assists. His senior year, he was third for the Profs’ in scoring with 31 points (8 goals, 15 points). In 1998, Larkin scored six goals and had five assists for 17 points that was second on the team.
Larkin, the team captain, was named to the 2000 National Soccer Coaches Association All-America second team and to the Mid-Atlantic All-Region first team. He was also chosen to play in the Umbro Select All-Star Classic. Larkin was a member of the 2000 and 1999 NJAC All-Conference first teams. He received NJAC All-Conference second team honors in 1998.
In his final season, Rowan was the national championship runner-up with a 24-2 record. The Profs won the NJAC Championship along with the Sunkist Tournament and the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts Fall Classic. The soccer team advanced to the national semifinals in 1998 and it qualified for the NCAA tournament in 1999 and 1997. The Profs posted a 73-17-1 record during the span of Larkin’s career.
Van Lynch (West Deptford, NJ) – Lynch earned four letters in wrestling. At the 177 pound weight class, he was the University’s only NAIA District 31 champion in 1969. He was also the South Jersey Open Wrestling Champion. In 1971, he won the NAIA District 31 title at 190 pounds and had three pins. Lynch advanced to nationals where he recorded three pins, including one over the fifth seeded wrestler in the nation. He was the only wrestler from the East to place in the 190-pound weight class and earn NAIA All-America honors. His senior year, Lynch served as co-captain of the Profs that won their first NAIA District 31 Wrestling Championship. Lynch never missed a match during his career.
His senior year, he was the co-recipient of the Albert White Award that was given to the top male senior athlete. Lynch was a member of the Sigma Phi Sigma Honor Society and the Gamma Tau Sigma Honor Society. He received his bachelor’s in biological science (1971) at the University and his master’s in junior college teaching - biology (1975).
Lynch is retired after 33 years as a science teacher at Paulsboro and Deptford High Schools. He has also been an adjunct professor at Rowan. In 1985, Lynch was selected the South Jersey Science Teacher of the Year by the American Chemical Society. He has received the NASA Student Achievement Award four times. In addition, Lynch has been recognized by the National Science Teachers’ Association, New Jersey Science Teachers Association and New Jersey Science Supervisors Association.
Dianne (Giebel) Nuess (Medical Lake, WA) – Nuess swam for the Profs for two seasons (1974-75 and 1973-74). Prior to college, she swam in the 200 butterfly at the 1968 Mexico Olympics and finished sixth overall with a time of 2:31.70. In the trials, she won her heat in 2:33.0. At the age of 15, she qualified at the Olympic trials in Los Angeles, CA. Nuess was ranked fourth in the world before the first-ever 200 butterfly at the Summer Olympics.
In 1974, she was a member of the Profs’ first place 200 freestyle relay at the Eastern Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (AIAW) Swimming and Diving Championships. Nuess also swam on the 200 medley relay that took second place. At the AIAW National Swimming and Diving Championships, she was on the 200 freestyle relay that finished 11th. She is a member of the South Jersey Swimming Hall of Fame.
Nuess graduated from the University in 1975 with a bachelor’s degree in teacher of handicapped. She later earned a master’s in administration and curriculum at Gonzaga University in 1992. Presently, Nuess is a special education teacher at Garry Middle School in the Spokane Public Schools.
In the 1980’s, she served as an aquatic director at the YMCA in Santa Barbara and Encinitas, CA. Nuess had her own business for three years teaching infants to swim. For five years, she coached at Spokane Area Swimming. In addition, she has also coached Special Olympics in cross country, track, basketball and softball. Nuess coaches seventh grade girls’ volleyball and track and special athletes at Garry Middle School.
Becky Peterson (Hancocks Bridge, NJ) – Peterson was a two-sport athlete for the Profs for four years. A forward, she compiled 118 career points in field hockey with 53 goals and 12 assists. Her senior year, Peterson scored 13 goals and had three assists for 29 points. A captain, she was selected to the STX/National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) All-America second team and the South Atlantic All-Region first team. Peterson was also named the NJAC Attack Player of the Year and to the All-Conference first team. In addition, she was chosen to play in the NFHCA Senior All-Star Game.
In 2002, the field hockey team was undefeated with a 21-0 record and won the NCAA Championship Tournament. Peterson contributed with 61 points, 28 goals and five assists. She was a STX/NFHCA All-America first team selection and on the STX/NFHCA South Atlantic All-Region first team. Peterson was tabbed the conference’s Co-Attack Player of the Year and a member of the NJAC All-Conference first team. The Profs were 66-10 during her career, captured three conference titles and advanced to the NCAA tournament all four years.
A midfielder for the lacrosse team, Peterson totaled 129 career points in 60 games with 84 goals and 45 assists. Her senior year, she was a team captain. Peterson scored 28 goals and had 18 assists for 46 points. In 2003, she registered 37 points with 22 goals and 15 assists. Peterson accumulated 34 (26-8) and 12 (8-4) points in her sophomore and freshman years respectively. In 2002, Rowan finished the season with a 12-5 record and played in the first round of the NCAA Championship Tournament.
Alex Stepanow – A forward, Stepanow played on the Profs’ soccer team from 1964-67. He accumulated 113 points with 53 goals and seven assists. Stepanow holds the University record for most goals (5, 1996) and most points (10, 1996) in a game. In the all-time scoring, he ranks third in goals (53) and fourth in points (113).
In his rookie season, Stepanow scored 10 goals and was named the team’s Most Valuable Player. He was the first freshman to receive the award. In 1965, Stepanow was a member of the National Soccer Coaches Association All-PA, NJ, DE team and the New Jersey State Colleges Athletic Conference All-Star first team. He collected 20 goals and one assist for 41 points. His junior and senior seasons, Stepanow tallied 31 (14-3) and 21 (9-3) points respectively.
Christy (Grozalis) Tuper (Franklin Lakes, NJ) – A freestyler, Tuper swam for four years (1989-90, 1990-91, 1991-92, 1992-93). She qualified every season for the NCAA Championships and earned All-American honors three of the four. Tuper still is the school’s record holder in the 50 (24.16, March 1993) and 100 (52.88, March 1993) yard freestyles.
Her senior year, she earned All-America in the 50 (sixth, 24.16) and 100 (seventh, 52.88) freestyles, 100 butterfly (fifth, 58.59) and 200 medley relay (eighth, 1:50.62). A co-captain, she received All-America honorable mention on the 200 freestyle (10th, 1:40.61), 400 medley (13th, 4:06.97) and 400 freestyle (16th, 3:42.48) relays. At the 1992 NCAA Championships, she swam to All-America honors in the 100 butterfly (fourth, 58.50) and 50 freestyle (seventh, 24.63) and All-America honorable mention in the 100 freestyle (ninth, 52.96). In her sophomore season, Tuper was an All-American with fourth (1:39.67) and fifth (24.54) places in the 200 and 50 freestyles respectively at the national championships.
All four years, she earned NJAC All-Conference honors in the 50 freestyle, 200 medley and 200 freestyle relays. Tuper also received three All-Conference honors in the 100 butterfly, 400 medley and 400 freestyle relays. She was the Metropolitan champion in the 50 freestyle four years straight. Her senior season, Tuper broke the Met record that she held from the previous year (24.62) with a time of 24.61. At the 1993 Metropolitan Championships, she was also a member of the winning 200 (1:40.90) and 400 (3:42.32) freestyle relays and the 200 (1:53.39) and 400 (4:08.11) medley relays. The times of the 200 freestyle relay and the 200 and 400 medley relays were Met records.
1978 baseball team – The Profs won the NCAA Championship with a 5-3 victory over host Marietta College on June 5. It was the first-ever NCAA title at the University. The baseball team took the lead, 2-1 in the second inning. Chuck Peale, Tim Peterson, Bob Holden and Tom Peterson each had a single. Marietta tied the score in the fourth but Ralph Wendell’s double and Dino Hall’s single broke the deadlock, 4-2 in the fifth inning. Both teams added a run in the eighth for the final score.
Brendan Rosenberg had a remarkable catch in center field just as the ball was leaving the park in the fourth inning that prevented two Marietta runs. He recorded another game-saving play in the eighth when he had a diving catch before the ball hit the ground. Hall followed with a catch that duplicated Rosenberg’s play. In the fifth, Tim Peterson went back to the right field fence to catch a line drive and then had a throw to first base. Hall caught a fly ball in left field for the third out in the ninth inning to end the game. Pitcher Bob Pfeffer scattered seven hits in the final game and was selected the Most Valuable Player of the tournament. He was joined on the All-Tournament team by Holden, Tom Peterson, Tim Peterson and Hall.
In the national tournament, the baseball team won its first two games against Cal-State Stanislaus, 4-3 (June 2) and Ithaca College, 7-1 (June 3) before falling to Marietta, 11-10 (June 4). In the ninth inning against Cal-State Stanislaus, Hall led off with a single and stole second. Frank Albano had a shot off the third baseman’s glove and Hall crossed the plate for the game-winning run. Buddy Goebel was the winning pitcher against Ithaca while Mat McArow took over the duties on the mound in the eighth inning. In the second inning, the Bombers had the bases loaded with no outs. Tim Peterson caught a high fly ball for the first out then he had a perfect throw to Holden who tagged the runner out at home who was attempting to score. The Profs scored one run in the second and they pulled away with four runs in the fifth. In the third game, the baseball team rallied for five runs in the eighth inning to trail Marietta, 11-10.
The Profs ended the season with a 29-11 record and was the conference champion. In the NCAA South Regional Tournament, the Profs defeated Upsala College, 5-3 (May 18) and lost to host Salisbury University, 5-4 (May 19). The baseball team came back with four straight victories against Montclair State University, 10-9 (May 20); Salisbury, 8-4 (May 20); Lynchburg College, 5-4 (May 21) and Lynchburg, 5-3 (May 21).