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Rider Athletics Hall of Fame June 11, 2016

Rider Broncs athletic logoRider Broncs athletic logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


LAWRENCEVILLE, NJ—An NBA player, former professional soccer and baseball players, an All-American wrestler and the first women’s soccer player will be inducted into the Rider University Athletics Hall of Fame June 11.

Jason Thompson ’08 of basketball, Jim McKeown ‘81 of soccer, Kevin Connolly ’75 of baseball, Don Fisch ’08 of wrestling and Sarah Artale ’03 of soccer make up the 2016 class.

Thompson was an Associated Press Honorable Mention All-America, US Basketball Writers’ Association District II Player of the Year, the National Association of Basketball Coaches All-District 3 selection, MAAC Player of the Year and the MAAC Defensive Player of the Year at Rider. He compiled 2,040 points (third most ever at Rider) and a Rider-record 1,171 rebounds.

The 12th player picked in the first round of the 2008 NBA draft, Thompson played a franchise record 541 games for the Sacramento Kings in the NBA, compiling over 5,000 points and 3,750 rebounds in seven seasons. Thompson is currently a member of the Toronto Raptors.

McKeown was the Rider Athlete of the Year in 1977-78 after earning First Team All-East Coast Conference and All-Region honors. A former member of the US National under 19 soccer team, McKeown was drafted in the first round of the NASL and played two years in the NASL, for the Tulsa Roughnecks and the Philadelphia Fury.

Connolly graduated as the Rider career leader in hits and RBI. As a sophomore the Bronc catcher batted .371 with 43 hits in just 34 games and earned All-District honors. Connolly was drafted in the 13th round by the Atlanta Braves and reached the AA level.

Artale is Rider’s career leader in goals (41) and points (95). She scored a Rider record 16 goals as a junior and led Rider to the MAAC Championship Game as a junior. Twice a Second Team and once a First Team All-MAAC, Artale led Rider to its first three MAAC semifinals and first MAAC Title Game.

Fisch compiled 110 wins in his Rider career and earned All-America honors as a junior when he placed fifth at the 2007 NCAA Championships. The Rider Athlete of the Year in 2007, Fish was a two-time Colonial Athletic Association Champion and a four-time NCAA qualifier.  As a freshman Fisch was the CAA Rookie of the Year.

The 1994 volleyball team, Rider’s first women’s varsity team to advance to an NCAA tournament on the Division I level, will receive the Clair Bee Award as the Most Outstanding Team Achievement Award.