NIC to inaugurate sports hall of fame

SUNDAY, APRIL 19, 2009

Nine athletes, two former coaches and a booster are included in the first class of inductees when the North Idaho College Athletic Hall of Fame is launched May 2 in the Edminster Student Union Building on the Coeur d’Alene campus.

The event will be held in conjunction with the annual spring NIC Booster Club awards banquet and auction. A social and silent auction get the evening started at 5:30, with dinner at 6:30. Awards ceremonies follow.

Tickets are $30 per person.

Rolly Williams, the former men’s basketball coach and athletic director, and former wrestling coach John Owen are in the initial class along with NIC Booster Club supporter Ace Walden.

Former athletes in the Class of 2009 are Darla Smith, women’s basketball; Jason Bay, baseball; Christine Amertil, track and field; Brian Farber, soccer; wrestlers Steve Gannon and Kenny Rucker; and men’s basketball players Greg Wiltjer, Gordon Herbert and Robbie Young.

The hall of fame induction was originally scheduled as part of an all-class reunion weekend in April. Those who purchased tickets for that event can use them May 2.

NIC’s outstanding male and female athletes and scholar award winners will also be recognized.

Info and ticket reservations can be obtained by contacting the NIC athletic department at (208) 769-3348.


Five Community Colleges of Spokane teams, four of them men’s cross country or track and field, will be inducted into the Northwest Athletic Association of Community Colleges Hall of Fame on May 28 in Pasco.

Teams slated for induction and their head coaches:

1974-75 men’s cross country, John Buck, won a third straight conference championship with a record score of 16 (15 is perfect).

1975-76, men’s cross country, Max Jensen, won a fourth straight conference championship by scoring 19 points.

1973-74 men’s track and field, Buck, won 12 individual titles and more than doubled the second-place team by scoring 200 points in winning the second of what would become an 11-year conference championship winning streak under Buck.

1975-76 men’s track and field, Buck, won the third straight conference title in the 11-year string, scoring a record 206 points.

1987-88 softball, Jerry Skaife, NWAACC champions had a 27-1 record in league play and 33-3 overall record.

The teams join three former CCS coaches – Irene Matlock, volleyball; Keith Snyder, baseball; and Erik Anderson, cross country and track and field – who were earlier announced as going into the NWAACC shrine.


Four North Idaho College men’s players have signed to play with NCAA schools next season.

Melvin Jones, a 5-foot-10 sophomore point guard from Seattle, has committed to play for Portland State. He was a first-team All-Scenic West Athletic Conference selection who averaged 13.2 points and 3.6 assists per game for the Cardinals.

Michel Swita, a 7-0 freshman center from Paris, who was limited to seven games this season because of a knee injury, will play for Montana State.

Lateef Williams, a 6-2 sophomore guard from Annapolis, Md., has signed with Northwest Nazarene. He was all-conference honorable mention, averaging 7.6 points and 2.19 assists.

Shawn Henderson, a sophomore guard from Seattle, signed earlier this season with Idaho.

College scene

Nick Silcock, a 2003 University High graduate who completed his football career at Montana State-Northern, has been selected to play in the NAIA Senior Classic all-star football game Saturday in Platte City, Mo.

A defensive end, Silcock will play for the National team in the third annual game against the American team. He will wear No. 47.

Alaina Smith, a 2005 graduate of North Central who is a senior at Dartmouth, was second in novice jumping to help the Big Green finish second in the Ivy Equestrian Championships.

•Senior Emily Rooney won the most valuable player and most inspirational player awards when Washington State honored its volleyball team at a banquet last weekend.

Other awards went to Brittany Tillman, a sophomore, most improved, and Brittany Johnson, a senior, the Coaches “Coug” Award, coach Andrew Palileo announced.

•Seven area athletes are among 42 from Eastern Washington who were named to Big Sky Conference All-Academic teams for winter quarter.

To qualify, an athlete must have a grade-point average of 3.20 or better.

Those honored by sport:

Men’s indoor track and field: Isaac Kuula, freshman, Cheney; Cameron Moore, senior, Ferris; and Ryan Taylor, sophomore, Deer Park.

Women’s indoor track and field: Bonnie Berscheid, sr., Priest River; Stephanie Dye, fr., Riverside; Ashley Stabl, fr., Tekoa-Oakesdale; and Brittney Williams, so., Colville.


Alec Grebe, 13, a member of Spokane Elite Gymnastics, placed sixth in all-around in his division at the USAG Region 2 Championships earlier this month in Bozeman.

Grebe, a student at Evergreen Junior High, also placed fourth on the parallel bars and the high bar in his second straight regional. He was fourth in the all-around at the 2009 men’s Washington state championships.

Jason Gillingham, 9, of Spokane Elite, who attends Otis Orchard Elementary and who was sidelined five months by an illness, also competed at regionals.


Erica Hart, a midfielder/defender from Gonzaga Prep, has signed with Idaho, Vandals coach Peter Showler announced.

Hart led the Bullpups to the 2008 state tournament as a senior and earned first-team All-Greater Spokane League honors with the league’s third-highest goal total. She also competed for the successful Spokane Shadow club team for seven years.

Showler also announced the addition of walk-on defender Lydia Beyerlein from Moscow, Idaho, a transfer from Walla Walla Community College, where she was a two-time all-conference selection. She has one year of eligibility, Showler said.

Track and field

Andrew Gonzalez, a highly regarded distance runner from Southridge High of Kennewick, has signed a letter of intent with Washington State, Cougars coach Rick Sloan announced.

Gonzalez won the 2008 Sunfair Invite, Columbia Basin Big Nine Conference and 4A regional cross country meets. He was fourth at the 2008 State 4A and 2007 State 3A cross country championships, and placed fourth at the 2008 Oregon/Washington BorderClash cross country meet.

He has a 3.93 GPA.


Cody Miller and Brandon Leliefeld of Deer Park have signed with Montana State-Northern, Tyson Thivierge, the coach of the Havre, Mont., school announced.

Both are four-time placers in the Washington 2A championships, helping the Stags to a second-place finish in 2007 and titles in 2008 and 2009.

Leliefeld placed sixth in 2006, third in ’07 and ’08 before winning in 2009. Miller placed eighth in ’06, second in ’07 and won back-to-back titles in ’08 and ’09. Thivierge said Leliefeld is projected to wrestle at 141 pounds and Miller at 149.


Tickets are still available for the University of Idaho All Women’s Sport Banquet May 4 at the University Inn-Best Western.

The evening honoring Vandals female athletes will begin with a no-host social at 5 followed by the banquet at 6. Tickets are $25 per person. Vandal Athletics Hall of Famer Kathy Clark is the guest speaker.

For more information or to RSVP, contact volleyball coach Debbie Buchanan at (208) 885-0238 or via e-mail to RSVP by April 27.

Compiled from staff, wire and news service reports.

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