HUNT VALLEY, Md. (Oct., 2013) – The National Lacrosse Hall of Fame formally welcomed eight new members Saturday evening at the Grand Lodge in Hunt Valley, Md. during the 2013 induction ceremony, sponsored by RPS-Bollinger Insurance and the Markel Insurance Company.
Inductees Jim Berkman, Quinn Carney Burke, Michele DeJuliis, Sue Heether, Bill Miller, Tracy Stumpf, Ryan Wade and Michael Watson were each introduced by a short video that summarized their career highlights and included comments from a presenter. Following their introduction, each inductee was greeted by a standing ovation as they made their way forward to address the gathering of current Hall of Fame members and several hundred additional friends, family and lacrosse supporters gathered for the celebration.
Berkman was inducted as ‘a truly great coach’ while the other seven members of the class were each inducted as ‘truly great players.’
Originally from Watertown, N.Y., Jim Berkman has re-written the NCAA coaching record book during his 25 seasons at Salisbury (Md.) University. He has led the Sea Gulls to 10 NCAA Division III national championships and four national runner-up finishes while producing 178 All-American players. Including one season at SUNY Potsdam, Berkman has a career coaching record of 428-48 through the 2013 season, with a winning percentage of 90.1 percent – the highest of any men’s college coach in history.
Berkman has bypassed a number of NCAA Division I coaching opportunities through the years to remain at the Division III level. One of the reasons, he said, is that the demands of coaching are uniformly high,
regardless of the competitive level.
“I’ve loved what I’ve had for the past 25 years at Salisbury,” said Berkman, who has the most coaching victories in men’s collegiate history. “The way the sport has evolved, the commitment is the same in a lot of ways when you start talking about what it takes to be successful. It’s a pretty strenuous commitment in this day and age.”
Berkman’s son, Kylor, an All-American midfielder who played on two of his father’s national championship teams, served as his presenter.
Quinn Carney Burke helped lead the University of Maryland to four straight national championships from 1998-2001. A native of Flemington, N.J., Carney was a key cog in extending Maryland’s unprecedented run of seven straight NCAA championships between 1995 and 2001. She finished her career ranked third on Maryland’s all-time list in assists, with 110, fifth in goals, with 162, and fifth in total points, with 265. She was a first-team All-American in 2001 and a third-team AA honoree in 1999.
“Going to Maryland was one of the easiest choices I ever had to make,” Carney said. “It was a complete no-brainer. I wanted to be surrounded by the best players in the country, and that’s what going to Maryland meant.”
Carney was a two-time member of the U.S. Women’s National Team, competing in the 2001 and 2005 World Championships. In addition to being named to the 2005 All-World Team, she concluded her international career as the United States’ all-time scoring leader with 37 goals in World Cup play.
“Being inducted into the Hall of Fame is a huge honor, but it all comes back to the people I was surrounded by,” Carney said. “This is just a culmination of all the people that have been around me.”
She was introduced by her former teammate and friend Cathy Reese.
Michele DeJuliis was a four-time All-American at Penn State University, earning first-team honors in 1995, 1996 and 1997, and third-team honors in 1994. She finished her career ranked sixth on Penn State’s all-time scoring list with 203 points, and led the Nittany Lions in scoring three times during her career.
“Being inducted into the Hall of Fame is completely overwhelming and very humbling,” said DeJuliis, a native of Baltimore. “When I think of all the legends that have played this sport, or coached, or officiated, and the path that they have created for players like me, I’m completely honored and couldn’t be more thankful.”
DeJuliis was a member of the U.S. Women’s National Team Program from 1994-2009, and served as captain of the 2009 United States team that captured the world championship.
“The 2009 experience was, by far, my greatest lacrosse moment,” DeJuliis said. “Knowing how important it was to bring the Cup back to the U.S. and knowing how tight that team was and how hard we had to fight was an incredible experience.”
DeJuliis spent eight years as an assistant coach at Princeton University before stepping down in 2012 to devote full-time energy to Ultimate Lacrosse, a company she founded that helps develop individual and team skills among female players. Princeton University’s women’s basketball coach Courtney Banghart served as her Hall of Fame presenter.
Sue Heether was an elite collegiate goalie at Loyola University Maryland before becoming one of the most decorated goalies in the history of the U.S. Women’s National Team Program. Heether was a four-year starter in college for the Greyhounds who capped her career in 1990 as a first-team All-American and the national goalie of the year.
Heether explained that being a goalie was a natural fit for her.
“For anyone who knows me, I’m not fleet of foot,” Heether said. “Catching and throwing came pretty naturally, but the running was just not in the books. The goalie had a very small area to stand in, and I’m very, very good at standing still.”
After serving as an alternate on the 1989 U.S. World Cup Team, Heether became a fixture on Team USA, winning gold as a member of the team in 1993, 1997 and 2001. She finished her international playing career with 53 saves, second most by a U.S. player in World Cup competition. Heether added a fourth gold medal to her resume in 2009 as head coach of the victorious U.S. team.
“Being inducted, especially as a goalie, is amazing, because it’s true that we are the scapegoats,” Heether said. “It’s nice to be a defender – because we are defenders – and be recognized because many times defenders think we get the short end of the stick.”
Fellow Team USA goalie and Hall of Fame member Jess Wilk Strosberg served as Heether’s presenter.
Bill Miller is recognized as one of the top players in the history of NCAA Division III, having twice been selected as the USILA’s Division III national player of the year during his career at Hobart (N.Y.) College. Miller led Hobart to four straight national championships from 1988-1991, while earning All-America honors each season, including first team recognition in 1989, 1990 and 1991. He finished his career as Hobart’s all-time leader in goals scored, with 173, and second in assists, 145, and points, 318.
“It was an incredible opportunity to play at Hobart, in that system and for those coaches, while being mentored by so many All-Americans,” Miller said. “Back then, we played more than half of our schedule against Division I teams, and we were battling against Syracuse and Cornell and Penn State.”
Following college, Miller played professionally in the indoor NLL for the Philadelphia Wings from 1991 to 1998, and was MVP of the NLL’s championship game in 1998. He was also a two-time member of the U.S. Men’s National Team, helping Team USA to world championships in both 1994 and 1998.
“Going into the National Lacrosse Hall of Fame hits you pretty hard,” he said. “While I was playing, I never thought about it. But as you get a little older and have a chance to think about it, this is now a reminder to me as to why you make those sacrifices. This is the payoff.”
Miller’s friend and former colleague, G.W. Mix, served as his presenter.
Tracy Stumpf was a four-year starter at the University of Maryland who served as team captain for the Terrapins’ first national championship team in 1986. Stumpf was a two-time, first-team collegiate All-American and was named to the NCAA’s All-Tournament Team three times. She was also recognized on the Atlantic Coast Conference’s 50th Anniversary Team and the NCAA’s 25th Anniversary Team.
“I feel lucky to have had all the experiences that I did, and now, so many years later, to get this on top of it is an amazing feeling,” Stumpf said of her induction. “This recognition has also given me a chance to look back and see how much fun I had. I’ve got some great memories.”
Stumpf spent seven years as a member of the U.S. Women’s National Team Program, serving as an alternate to Team USA in 1986 before becoming a member of the 1989 World Cup team that won the world championship in Australia.
“Playing oversees, in an international arena, and we came out with a win. What more can you say? We were on top of the world,” Stumpf recalled.
Sue Stahl, retired coach of the U.S. Women’s National Team, served as her presenter.
Ryan Wade, from Severn, Md., was a three-time All-American at the University of North Carolina and the national midfielder of the year in 1993. Known for his incredible work ethic on and off the field, he helped lead the Tar Heels to the NCAA national championship in 1991 as well as four straight ACC championships during his career (1991-1994). He was selected as the ACC’s player of the year following both his junior and senior seasons.
“Lacrosse has brought great value to my life,” Wade said. “It taught me that you can do anything in this life as long as you put in the effort and are willing to work harder than everybody else. I’m not sure where I’d be today without lacrosse.”
Wade was a member of three U.S. national teams, playing on the U-19 squad in 1992 and then winning two world championships as a member of Team USA in 1994 and 1998. He was selected to the All-World Team in 1998 and also tabbed as the tournament’s most valuable player. The 1998 game, a 15-14 Team USA victory over Canada in overtime, is regarded by some as the best game ever played. Wade had the assist on the eventual game-winning goal in overtime.
“I can’t explain how much it means to me to be inducted into the National Hall of Fame,” Wade said. “I’m overwhelmed to be considered with all those who have come before me and come with me today.”
Jason Zach Wade, Ryan’s brother who also played at North Carolina, served as his presenter.
Watson, a Baltimore native, enjoyed a stellar collegiate career at the University of Virginia as well as in Major League Lacrosse and on the international level. He was a four-time All-American at Virginia, including first team honors as a junior and senior in 1996 and 1997, and was named the national attackman of the year in 1996. He also won the ACC’s Rookie of the Year Award as a freshman in 1994 and the ACC’s Player of the Year Award as a senior in 1997.
Watson teamed with Doug Knight and Tim Whitely to form one of the most formidable attack units in the collegiate game over the past two decades. Watson finished his career ranked second on Virginia’s all-time scoring list with 141 goals.
“We were able to play the game in a little bit of a different way from the attack position,” Watson said. “We attacked the goal hard, in a reckless way, but we developed that part of our game.”
Watson played seven seasons professionally in Major League Lacrosse, earning all-star honors five times. He is also credited as being the model for the player depicted on the MLL logo.
“It’s a little surreal because I feel like it was just the other day that I was on the field playing,” Watson said. “This is a tribute to all the great teams that I was on and all the great players that I had a chance to play with. Everybody gets a little piece of this.”
Watson’s longtime friend, Patrick Doyle, served as his presenter.
The National Lacrosse Hall of Fame, a program of US Lacrosse, was established in 1957 to honor men and women who by their deeds as players, coaches, officials and/or contributors, and by the example of their lives, personify the great contribution of lacrosse to our way of life. More than 380 lacrosse greats are honored in the National Lacrosse Hall of Fame, which is located with the Lacrosse Museum at US Lacrosse Headquarters in Baltimore.