West Coast Conference Announces 2014 Hall of Honor Class
Jan. 16, 2014
SAN BRUNO, Calif. --- The West Coast Conference will induct its sixth annual Hall of Honor class on Saturday, March 8 at the Orleans Hotel in Las Vegas, Nev. Ten individuals, one from each member institution, will be honored as part of the 2014 West Coast Conference Men's and Women's Basketball Championships from March 6-11 at the Orleans Arena.
"This year we welcome yet another remarkable group of inductees into the West Coast Conference Hall of Honor," WCC Commissioner Jamie Zaninovich said. "These 10 individuals are some of the best and brightest to ever represent our conference and their respective institutions. The Hall of Honor celebration will once again serve as one of the highlights of what promises to be another highly competitive West Coast Conference Basketball Championship."
The 2014 WCC Hall of Honor class includes: BYU's Ed Eyestone (Cross Country), Gonzaga's Kelley Cunningham Spink (Volleyball), Loyola Marymount's Jeff Fryer (Basketball), Pacific's Keith Swagerty (Basketball), Pepperdine's Mike Scott (Baseball), Portland's Laura Sale O'Connell (Basketball), Saint Mary's Tracy Morris Sanders (Basketball), San Diego's Jose Luis Noriega (Tennis), San Francisco's Ollie Johnson (Basketball) and Santa Clara's Leslie Osborne (Soccer).
The Hall of Honor class will be formally inducted at the WCC Hall of Honor Brunch on Saturday, March 8 at 9 a.m. PT at the Mardi Gras Ballroom in the Orleans Hotel and will be honored during halftime of the men's semifinal games later that evening.
Tickets to the WCC Hall of Honor Brunch & Induction Ceremony are available to the public for $40 and may be purchased online using the Hall of Honor Ticket Form on WCCsports.com. Tickets must be purchased by Thursday, February 28.
Single game tickets for the 2014 West Coast Conference Men's and Women's Basketball Championships will also be on sale at the Orleans Arena box office each morning. For more information on the tournament and where to stay, click here.
Ed Eyestone, Brigham Young University
Eyestone claimed conference championship titles for BYU in 1983 and 1984 in cross country, in 1984 and 1985 for the 5,000, in 1984 for the indoor mile, and in 1985 for the indoor two-mile and 10,000. He was the first non-football player to win the WAC's Stan Bates Award. He also won the NCAA Top Six Award in 1986.
As a professional runner, Eyestone was an Olympic marathoner twice, first in 1988 in Seoul, South Korea, and then in 1992 in Barcelona, Spain. Eyestone has a career-best marathon time of 2:10:59. was a five-time U.S. Road Racer of the Year, and won the San Francisco Bay to Breakers 12KM race and is the last American (and only since 1981) to win what is considered the world's largest footrace. Eyestone has also served as a commentator for ESPN and Fox Sports Elite Racing for 12 years and has been a columnist for Runners World magazine since 1999. In 2008, Eyestone was the head distance analyst for NBC's coverage of the Beijing Olympics.
As the men's cross country coach since 2000, Eyestone has guided the Cougars to eight Mountain West Conference Championships and two WCC Championships. Eyestone earned WCC Cross Country Coach of the Year accolades in 2011 and 2013.
Kelley Cunningham Spink, Gonzaga University
An honorable mention All-WCC pick as a freshman in 1989 and a second-team selection as a sophomore in 1990 as she helped the Bulldogs to their inaugural NCAA Tournament appearance, the homegrown product of Spokane's Lewis and Clark High began her dominance as a junior in 1991. That season she earned All-WCC first-team and All-West Region second team status as selected by the American Volleyball Coaches Association. Her sensational senior campaign saw her gain All-WCC first team, All-West Region first team recognition and honorable mention All-America honors as selected by Volleyball Monthly Magazine.
Spink was named the Gonzaga University Bulldog Club Senior Female Athlete of the Year, and was Gonzaga's institutional recipient of the Champion NCAA Woman of the Year. After one year as an assistant coach for the Bulldogs following graduation, Spink moved played for the San Jose Storm in the Professional Volleyball League during the 1996-97 season and played for the Storm when it was a member of the National Volleyball Association from 1994-96. Spink was a member of the USA National Team in 1995, which played in the NORCECA'S. She also played four years of beach volleyball, playing both double and 4-person volleyball.
In 2010 Spink was one of 10 former Bulldogs honored on the commemorative 25th Anniversary Team of 50 student-athletes to celebrate 25 years of the West Coast Conference sponsoring women's athletics. She was selected to be Gonzaga's representative at the 2010 Zappos.com WCC Basketball Championships, which recognized the 25th Anniversary Team.
Jeff Fryer, Loyola Marymount University
One of the top long distance shooters in WCC history, Fryer still owns two of the top three spots on the single-season charts in three-point field goals with 126 (4.1 per game) as a junior and 121 (4.3) as a senior. More than two decades since attempting his last shot as a collegiate player, Fryer currently ranks second all-time in career three-pointers with 363 (3.24) in overall games and is the career leader during league play with 166 (3.4).
Fryer played a key role on a loaded Loyola Marymount team advanced to three consecutive NCAA Tournaments, including a dramatic run to the 1990 Elite Eight. The Lions captured three WCC Regular Season Championships and two WCC Tournament titles.
Keith Swagerty, University of the Pacific
In the 1966 NCAA Tournament, Swagerty scored 16 points and had 19 rebounds in a first-round 83-74 loss to Utah. He scored 26 points and collected 23 rebounds in a 102-91 loss to the Elvin Hayes-led Houston Cougars in the consolation game. A year later in the 1967 NCAA Tournament, Swagerty led Pacific to a 72-63 first-round win over defending national champion Texas Western (now UTEP). He scored 11 points and had eight rebounds in an 80-64 second-round loss to John Wooden's UCLA Bruins. Swagerty earned national recognition when he had 39 rebounds in one game against UC Santa Barbara on March 5, 1965; it is still a WCC and Pacific record. Upon graduating, he held the records for career totals in points and rebounds, and still holds the record for career rebounds today.
Swagerty went on to play two seasons in the ABA with the Houston Mavericks and the Kentucky Colonels. He also played in Italy before becoming a physical education instructor and coach at Seattle Pacific University from 1974-80. He compiled an 87-61 record and led the Falcons to the NCAA Division II Tournament with a 20-9 mark in 1976-77.
He was the first Pacific Basketball player to have his number retired (32). A 1985 inductee into the Pacific Athletic Hall of Fame, Swagerty was awarded the Amos Alonzo Stagg Award of Honor in 2005 for living a life of distinction.
Mike Scott, Pepperdine University
During his collegiate career, Pepperdine won three consecutive WCC titles and advanced to the NCAA Tournament each year. Scott was a 1975 District VIII selection. Named to the WCC's 50 Greatest Student-Athletes list in 2001, Scott was also named to the WCC/Rawlings 40th Anniversary Baseball Team.
After being selected by the New York Mets in the second round of the 1976 Major League Draft, Scott enjoyed a remarkable professional career and played 13 years in the majors with the New York Mets (1979-82) and the Houston Astros (1983-91). One of just a handful of pitchers to ever record a no-hitter and 300 strikeouts in the same season, Scott was a three-time All-Star and started for the National League in the 1987 Midsummer Classic.
Scott captured the 1986 National League Cy Young Award after posting an 18-10 record with a 2.22 ERA to go along with a league-leading 306 strikeouts. On September 26 the Santa Monica native pitched a 2-0 no-hitter against the San Francisco Giants in the Astrodome to clinch the N.L. West division title. The Astros fell to the Mets, the eventual World Series Champions, but Scott was so dominant in his starts in game one and four that he was named the 1986 NLCS MVP - the first ever selected from the losing team. As a 20-game winner in 1989, Scott finished second in the Cy Young voting. The Astros retired his No. 33 jersey in 1992.
Laura Sale O'Connell, University of Portland
After averaging in double figures in points as both a sophomore and a junior en route to All-West Coast Conference Honors, Sale O'Connell had perhaps her best season as a senior in 1995-96. That year, she was named the WCC Player of the Year after leading the Pilots to the WCC regular season championship. She led the conference in scoring with a 19.2 points per game mark, had a season and career-high 30 points against University of San Francisco at the WCC Tournament and she garnered United Press International (UPI) All-America Honorable Mention.
The 116 field goals Sale O'Connell made that year against WCC opponents are still an all-time league season record. The 577 points she scored as a senior ranks fifth on Portland's all-time single-season charts, while her per game average that year is eighth best all-time. Sale O'Connell was a two-time All-WCC First Team selection and was selected to the WCC All-Tournament Team twice. She landed conference all-academic accolades three times and garnered all-region all-academic honors as both a junior and a senior.
Following college, Sale O'Connell earned an NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship before playing a year professionally in Germany. She would go onto become a long-time high school teacher and girls basketball coach.
Tracy Morris Sanders, Saint Mary's College
During the 1998-99 year, the Gaels entered the WCC Tournament as the No. 3 seed as Sanders led SMC to an upset win over No. 2 seed and tournament host Santa Clara in the semifinals, then a 72-69 win over No. 1 seed Pepperdine to cut down the nets. Sanders captured WCC Tournament MVP honors. Sanders led the league in scoring for three straight seasons and finished second all-time in the WCC in points scored. She set the Saint Mary's school record for points in her career, breaking a 15-year old mark. During her Player of the Year season in 1999, Sanders led the Gaels to their first-ever NCAA Tournament berth.
Sanders has coached the last eight seasons with Thomas, being promoted to Associate Head Coach before the 2013-14 season. She has helped produce several All-WCC award winners, including helping the development of Louella Tomlinson, who ended her career as the Saint Mary's leader in career points, the WCC leader in career rebounds and the NCAA career leader in blocked shots.
Jose Luis Noriega, University of San Diego
During his senior year, he advanced to the NCAA Singles Championships Semifinals. He captured two Grand Slam titles - the 1992 Rolex National Collegiate Indoor Championships and the 1989 DuPont Intercollegiate National Clay Court title. He led USD to two West Coast Conference Championships (1989 & 1990) and two NCAA Team Championship appearances (1989 & 1990).
In his junior campaign, he advanced to the NCAA Quarterfinals, won his second West Coast Conference Singles Championship, received the Region VIII Head/Arthur Ashe Sportsmanship award, and at the NCAA Tournament, received the national Rafael Osuna Sportsmanship Award. As a sophomore, he won the WCC Doubles title with teammate J.R. Edwards and was runner-up in singles. He was the WCC Singles Champion and Doubles Champion with Dave Stewart as a freshman and was named the 1989 Volvo Tennis/Rookie Player of the Year.
Born and raised in Lima, Peru, Noriega was one of his country's best junior players. He capped off his junior career by winning the 1987 South American Junior Championships. During his USD tenure, he also won back-to-back Peruvian National Clay Court titles (1989 & 1990) and represented his country for the first time in Davis Cup competition (1990-91). A 1992 USD graduate with a degree in Business, he was inducted into USD's Chet and Marguerite Pagni Family Athletic Hall of Fame in 2007.
Ollie Johnson, University of San Francisco
Johnson ranks sixth on USF's all-time scoring list with 1,668 career points and has the third highest scoring average in school history at 19.9 points per game. He also ranks second all-time in career rebounding, trailing only Bill Russell, and his 1,323 career rebounds rank fifth in WCC history.
Johnson is just one of four USF players, along with Bill Cartwright, Bill Russell and Darrell Tucker, to rank in the school's all-time top-10 in scoring and rebounding and is one of just two players, along with Cartwright, to rank in the all-time top-10 in scoring, rebounding and field goal percentage. Johnson's No. 32 jersey was retired by the University on Jan. 25, 2014, becoming the sixth USF men's basketball player to have his number retired.
Johnson was selected in the first round of the 1965 NBA Draft by the Boston Celtics with the eighth overall pick but never played in the NBA. He played for the San Francisco Athletic Club in the Amateur Athletic Union and professionally in Belgium for three seasons.
Leslie Osborne, Santa Clara University
Contributing to a women's soccer program rich in achievement, Osborne currently sits sixth on Santa Clara's all-time goals list with 44 and ranks ninth in assists with 33. Named to the 2001 and 2004 College Cup All-Tournament teams, Osborne won back-to-back West Coast Conference Player of the Year awards in 2003 and 2004 and was also tabbed as the WCC's Defender of the Year for the 2004 season.
Appearing in 62 games for the United States senior national team, Osborne earned her first USA national team appearance in 2004 vs. Sweden and scored her first national team goal vs. Chinese Taipei on October 1, 2006. Osborne also started five of six games in the 2007 Women's World Cup in which the USA team placed third.
Osborne began her professional soccer career as team captain of the Bay Area FC Gold Pride in 2009. In 2010, she was team captain with the Boston Breakers, and in 2013 she joined the Chicago Red Stars as team captain in the inaugural season of the National Women's Soccer League.