GW Athletic Hall of Fame Inducts Five New Members
Induction Ceremony Held Saturday evening on campus
Athletic Hall of Fame Class of 2010 Halftime Introductions
Jan. 23, 2010
WASHINGTON, DC - Membership in the George Washington University Athletic Hall of Fame expanded from 131 to 136 on Saturday, Jan. 23, when five newly-elected members were inducted in ceremonies on campus.
The five inductees, Scott Allen '93, Mike Battle '73, Myriah (Lonergan) Cain '96, Liu Li '96 and President Emeritus Stephen Joel Trachtenberg '88 -`07, were introduced at halftime of the GW-Richmond basketball gamer earlier Saturday and then were officially inducted at dinner Saturday night.
Allen is the winningest coach in the 80-year history of the GW golf program and led the team to its first NCAA berth in 60 years in 2006. "I'm honored that I have this special place in the athletic Hall of Fame," Allen said. He tallied his 1,000th career head-to-head victory at the 2005 Bethany Beach Invitational, and his 1,364 career victories are four times more than any other GW golf coach. Allen coached the Colonials to 13 tournament victories and 41 top-three finishes, both more than all other GW golf coaches combined. In addition to his duties as golf coach, Allen served as the athletic department's Recruiting Coordinator (serving as liaison to Admissions and Financial Aid for all of GW's teams) from 1998-2008. Allen is the head golf coach at the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.
Battle was a three-year letter winner and two-time men's basketball team MVP. He began his GW career in 1969 when freshmen were not allowed to play varsity basketball and dunking was prohibited. His career took place prior to the construction of Smith Center and the Colonials practiced in the infamous "Tin Tabernacle" and played home games at Fort Myer.
A 6-foot-5 forward, Battle played alongside fellow GW Athletic Hall of Fame inductees Pat and Mike Tallent, Walter Szczerbiak, and Ronnie Nunn. At the induction he referred to himself as a "survivor" as the player usually assign to guard the best player on the opposing team including All-Americas and future NBA stars such as Julius Erving, Artis Gilmore, Kermit Washington and Derek Dickey.
Battle's physical play and aggressive defense earned him the nickname "Captain Crunch." He was usually assigned to guard the best player.
Lonergan Cain is the 10th women's basketball player to enter the GW Athletic Hall of Fame after a standout career from 1992-96. She helped the Colonials to 95 victories and three NCAA Tournaments, including the program's first Sweet 16 appearance in 1995, during her four seasons.
In accepting her induction plaque, she said, "As I reflected back on my time at GW the memories flood and I will forever carry it in my heart."
As team captain during the 1995-96 season, she averaged a career-best 11.9 points as GW captured its second straight Atlantic 10 Championship and reached the second round of the NCAA Tournament. During her four seasons, Lonergan was named to the 1993 A-10 All-Rookie Team and twice received the team's Abbie Oliver Smith Award for academic and athletic excellence in 1994 and 1996.
Many of Li's teammates from her championship years were in attendance for her induction. "I am sincerely thankful, privileged and honored," she said from the podium.
She was known as a fierce competitor and a great teammate. Li started as an outside hitter but quickly distinguished herself as an all-around player who could play virtually any position during her GW career. Her skills and leadership helped lead the team to Atlantic 10 Championship titles in both 1994 and 1995.
In 1994, Liu was named the Atlantic 10 Conference Player of the Year, in addition to being named to the All-Mideast Region and All-Atlantic 10 Conference first teams. She also was a five-time Atlantic 10 Player of the Week.
Trachtenberg was the 15th president of the University and was instrumental in transforming the athletics program during his time as president from August 1988 to July 2007. In accepting his hall of fame plaque he said "I am obviously very grateful and honored to be here."
During his tenure, the men's and women's athletic departments merged and winning became a top priority. President Trachtenberg took office during a 30-year drought in men's athletics that began in 1961 in which no GW basketball team made a post-season appearance.
Athletic efforts began to improve on all fronts at the school and after men's basketball hit a low point in 1989 with a 1-27 record, the team began to show gradual improvement leading to a 1991 NIT appearance.
During Trachtenberg's 19-year tenure as president, several Colonials teams advanced to the postseason including the following in the NCAA Tournament: men's basketball (7); women's basketball (13); baseball (3); men's soccer (3); volleyball (4); women's soccer (1); women's rowing (1) and eight NCAA Regional appearances by gymnastics and one by men's golf.
This year's Athletic Hall of Fame "Class of 2010" is the 48th elected since the University's Hall was founded in 1959.