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September 6, 2012

Swarthmore College to Induct First Class into Garnet Athletics Hall of Fame

Twelve inaugural members will be honored on Oct. 26, 2012

SWARTHMORE, Pa. - In its nearly 150-year history, Swarthmore College’s student-athletes, coaches, and administrators have led Garnet teams to record titles, national championships, and All-American honors, bringing distinction to the College community. To pay tribute to this legacy, Swarthmore will induct 12 outstanding members of its athletics community into the new Garnet Athletics Hall of Fame.

The public unveiling of the Hall of the Fame and the induction of its first class will take place during the College’s annual Garnet Homecoming and Family weekend celebration on Friday, Oct. 26 at 8:45 p.m. in the Lamb-Miller Fieldhouse.

The members of the inaugural class are Avery "Bunky" Blake Jr. ’53 (lacrosse, football); Charles “Chip” Chevalier ’93 (football); Danielle Duffy ’98 (field hockey, track and field); Richard “Dick” Esrey ’50 (football, basketball, baseball); Richard “Dick” Hall ’52 (baseball, track and field, football, basketball, soccer); Eleanor Kay “Pete” Hess (coach/administrator); Patrick “Hondo” Holmes ’82 (wrestling); Gwyneth Jones Cote ’84 (lacrosse, field hockey); Heather Kile Lord ’02 (basketball, lacrosse); Robert “Tiny” Maxwell, Class of 1907 (football, track and field); McWelling "Mac" Todman ’77 (soccer, track, and field); and the 1984–1985 men’s tennis team.

“Swarthmore has a rich athletics tradition that extends back almost to the College’s founding,” said Marian Ware Director of Athletics and Physical Education Adam Hertz. “We want to honor this history and publicly commemorate the many exceptional performances by Swarthmore’s student-athletes and teams, recognizing their athletics accomplishments together with their contributions to the community. The Swarthmore College Garnet Athletics Hall of Fame is one way to do that.”

With the approach of Swarthmore’s sesquicentennial in 2014, the Garnet Athletics Hall of Fame has been established to honor the student-athletes and administrators who have contributed to the College’s success. The members of the premier class were chosen from more than 100 nominations by a selection committee of College administrators, coaches, and alumni for their significant and distinctive impact on Swarthmore College athletics and the College itself.

Garnet Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2012

Avery “Bunky” Blake Jr. ’53, a member of the National Lacrosse Hall of Fame, is one of the most decorated players in the history of the Swarthmore lacrosse program. Playing for his father, head lacrosse coach Avery Blake Sr. (1931–1959), Blake helped fuel one of the greatest eras in the history of the program, as the Garnet captured four consecutive Pennsylvania-Delaware League Championships (1950–1953) during his career. One of the nation’s elite lacrosse players at the time, Blake remains the only student-athlete in Swarthmore lacrosse history to receive All-America honors all four years of his career. Today, he is retired from his position as partner in Media Merchants and lives with his wife, Judy, in Penn Valley, Calif.

The most prolific quarterback in Swarthmore football history, Charles “Chip” Chevalier ’93 re-wrote the Garnet record book during his four-year career. Chevalier took the Swarthmore offense to new heights, setting program records for career passing yards (5,376), completions (410), and touchdowns (41). Chevalier was at his best during the 1992 campaign, during which he led the Centennial Conference in passing (2,371) and total offense (2,564), earning Centennial Conference Offensive Player of the Year and All-American honors. Today, Chevalier is an attorney with the firm of Gibbons P.C. He and his wife, Gina, live in Clark, N.J.

Danielle Duffy ’98 was a star for both the Swarthmore field hockey and track and field teams. In field hockey, Duffy led the Garnet to three consecutive Centennial Conference Championships (1995, 1996, 1997), the program’s only NCAA Playoff appearance (1996), and the 1997 ECAC Championship. The field hockey program’s all-time leader in career points (235) and second all-time in career goals (68), Duffy was named Centennial Player of the Year three times (1995, 1996, 1997) and All-American in 1996. On the track, Duffy was equally impressive, guiding the Garnet track teams to conference titles in 1997 (indoor) and 1998 (outdoor). She earned eight individual Centennial Conference gold medals during her career and was named the conference’s Most Outstanding Performer in 1997 and 1998. Today, Duffy is a cardiologist and assistant professor of medicine at Thomas Jefferson University. She and her husband, Kelly Cline, live in Media, Pa.

Richard “Dick” Esrey ’50 was a three-sport star who defined versatility and athleticism. Playing tailback in single-wing football, Esrey was a quadruple-threat option (running, passing, receiving, punting) that few defenses could contain. An Associated Press Football All-American in 1948 and 1949, Esrey is tied for all-time lead in career points (126) and career touchdowns (21) and held the NCAA record for kickoff return touchdowns in a game for almost 50 years. On the diamond, Esrey led the Garnet baseball team in nearly every statistical category during his four-year career, earning second team All-NCAA District II honors as a shortstop in 1950. On the court, Esrey was a member of the 1947 basketball team that won MASCAC Championship and the 1949 team that reached the MASCAC championship game. Today, Esrey is retired from AT&T, where he headed the division that managed the North American network. He lives in Princeton, N.J.

No Swarthmore alum achieved more at the highest level of professional sports than Richard “Dick” Hall ’52.  A 19-year Major League Baseball veteran who pitched for four different clubs, Hall made his professional baseball mark with the Baltimore Orioles, helping the team win the 1966 and 1970 World Series. At Swarthmore, Hall was a true multi-sport star for the Garnet, lettering in baseball, football, basketball, track and field, and soccer. On the diamond, Hall still holds many of the program’s pitching and hitting records, including career strikeouts (281), single-season strikeouts (108), career ERA (1.69), single-season ERA (1.01), career batting average (.412), single-season batting average (.510) and single-season home runs (6). On the track, Hall still holds the school record for the long jump (23.25 feet), set in 1951. A recently retired accountant, Hall and his wife, Elena, live in Timonium, Md.

Eleanor Kay “Pete” Hess (1924–2011) was a fierce advocate for women’s athletics at a time when women were not provided the same opportunities as men in college sports. During her 33-year career as an administrator, Hess chaired the Department of Physical Education and Athletics for Women from 1965 to 1979, and then served as the associate chair for the Department of Physical Education and Athletics from 1979 to 1990. As a coach from 1957 to 1984, she led the lacrosse team to 121 victories, second most in program history, and led the field hockey program to 140 victories, the most by any coach in program history.

One of the finest wrestlers in Swarthmore’s history, Patrick “Hondo” Holmes ’82 was a four-time NCAA Championship qualifier and a two-time All-American. He finished second in his weight class (134) at the 1980 NCAA Division III National Tournament and fourth in 1981. At the end of his Swarthmore career, Holmes held 12 program records, including most career wins (116), most career match points (481), most dual meet wins (76), most dual meet wins in a season (23), and most career falls (32). Holmes is vice president of technology for IPC The Hospitalist Company. He and his wife, Sylvia Crowley Holmes ’80, live in Pasadena, Calif.

One of the best female athletes of her era, Gwyneth Jones Cote ’84 was a force on the Garnet lacrosse and field hockey teams, playing for fellow Hall of Fame inductee Pete Hess in both sports. Cote holds the lacrosse program record for career points (374) and career assists (176) and ranks fourth all-time in career goals (198). In 1984, she set the Swarthmore and NCAA Division III record for assists in a single season (55), earning First Team All-America honors in the process. Cote also excelled in field hockey, where she was a three-year starter and was twice named to the Division III All-Region Field Hockey Team. She and her husband, John Cote, live in Westfield, N.J., with their two children. Cote has coached her daughter’s lacrosse team for the last several years.

Heather Kile Lord ’02 carried the women’s basketball program to new heights during her four-year career. The leading scorer in the history of the program and in the entire Centennial Conference (1,965) until 2012, Lord helped lead the Garnet to its first ever Centennial Conference Championship and NCAA Tournament appearance in 2001. Lord ranks first all-time in career free throws (557), second in field goals (704), second in rebounds (1,263), and third in steals (231). Lord’s individual accolades include the prestigious Jostens Trophy, Kodak and D3Hoops First Team All-American, GTE Academic All-American, Centennial Conference Player of the Year, and four-time All-Centennial First Team as well as First Team All-Centennial in lacrosse. Today, she is a principal engineer with Comcast and lives in West Chester, Pa. with her husband, Vincent Lord, and son, Will.

Robert “Tiny” Maxwell Class of 1907 (1884-1922) wore the Swarthmore “S” for just two seasons, but his impact on the Garnet athletics programs and the game of football itself is immeasurable. Maxwell earned football All-America honors in 1905 after leading the Garnet to a 7–1 record. Maxwell left Swarthmore in 1906 to play professional football but wore his Swarthmore jersey for all team pictures during his pro career. The Maxwell Award, given every year to the best player in college football and the sport’s most prestigious award outside of the Heisman Trophy, is named after him. In track and field, Maxwell’s hammer throw record of 138 feet 6 inches has stood for more than 100 years.

McWelling “Mac” Todman ’77 was the catalyst of the Garnet soccer team’s run to the NCAA Division III Championship Match in 1974. Todman scored a tournament-best five goals in 1974, including the game-winner to reach the championship game. Thanks to his program-best 20-goal season in 1974, Todman was named Second Team All-American, First Team All-Region, and MAC South Player of the Year. Todman ranks second all-time in career goals (35), third all-time in career points (70), and second all-time in single season points (40, 1974). On the track, Mac still holds the school record in the 100-yard dash (9.8). Today, Todman is associate professor and former chair of the psychology department at the New School for Social Research in New York City. He and his wife, Karen Hanson ’76, live in Glenside, Pa. Their son, McWelling Todman, is a member of the Class of 2014.

The 1984–1985 Men’s Tennis Team reached the pinnacle of the sport, winning the 1985 NCAA Division III team championship, the NCAA Division III doubles championship, and producing five All-Americans. In the 1985 NCAA Division III Team Championship Tournament, the Garnet defeated Washington & Lee (6–3) and earned a hard-fought 6–3 win over the University of St. Thomas (Minn.) to reach the title match. In the championship match against Kalamazoo College, the Garnet claimed the program’s second national championship, defeating the Hornets 5–4 in a match that was determined in the third tiebreaker of second doubles.

If you would like to nominate a former student-athlete, coach, administrator, or team for the Garnet Athletics Hall of Fame, click here.