Morey O’Donnell, who composed the University of Idaho fight song, “Go Vandals Go,” is among nine individuals and one team slated for induction into the Vandals Athletic Hall of Fame on Sept. 21 in Moscow.
O’Donnell will be inducted in the Legacy category along with former track and field stars Vic Dyrgall and Pat Perrine and boxing coach Frank Young.
Also to be inducted in the Class of 2012 will be tennis standouts Patty Shanander and Cathy Shanander-Law; Riley Smith, basketball; Dick Mooney, baseball, football and lifetime contributions; supporter Jim Anderson, lifetime contributions; and the 1966 Vandals baseball team.
This will be the fourth induction for the Hall of Fame that was founded in 2007. A banquet and the ceremony will take place the night before the Idaho football team plays Wyoming in the Kibbie Dome.
Mike Divilbiss, former Idaho and Lewis-Clark State women’s coach, has been hired as an assistant coach at Illinois.
Divilbiss follows Matt Bollant, who was hired by Illinois from Green Bay last month. Divilbiss was an assistant for Bollant for four years with the Phoenix after leaving Idaho.
Bollant said of Divilbiss in a school release: “I believe he’s as good of a teacher of the game as there is in the entire country.”
While Divilbiss was in Green Bay, the Phoenix went 122-13. He was at Idaho for seven seasons, twice making the Big West Conference tournament title game and earning Coach of the Year honors in 2004. In 14 years at LCSC, his teams made six trips to the NAIA national tournament, including an Elite Eight in 2000 and Final Four in 2001.
Alexis Olgard, a 6-foot-5 sophomore middle blocker on the Southern California volleyball team from Mead, was named an All-American Strength and Conditioning Athlete of the Year by the National Strength and Conditioning Association.
Olgard, who helped USC to the NCAA Final Four the past two seasons, made the Freshman All-Conference team in 2010.
• Chris Williams, a Washington junior golfer from Moscow, Idaho, is one of 10 named a semifinalist for the 2012 Ben Hogan Award, the Golf Coaches Association of America announced.
It is the most prestigious award in men’s college golf, taking into account all collegiate and amateur competitions during the past 12-month period.
• Whitney Leavitt, a junior sprinter on the women’s track and field team, and senior Chad Henninger from men’s tennis, have been selected as April’s Scholar-Athletes of the Month by the Eastern Washington athletic department.
Leavitt, from Benton City, Wash., has a 3.69 cumulative grade-point average in English and has qualified for the Big Sky Conference Championships in the 100- and 200-meter dashes. Henninger, from Eugene, Ore., has maintained a 3.48 GPA in criminal justice. He’s had his most successful season as an Eagle with a 12-4 record in singles and 9-4 in doubles.
• Courtney Zalud, a Washington State sophomore from Mt. Spokane, was named to the Pac-12 All-Academic team in women’s indoor track and field with a 3.21 GPA.
• Eight Eastern Washington athletes from the area with cumulative GPAs of 3.20 or better were named to Big Sky Conference All-Academic teams for winter quarter.
The athletes by sport:
Women’s basketball: Chenise Pakootas, Inchelium/Mead, sophomore, undeclared major; Jordan Schoening, Post Falls, junior, health and fitness secondary education.
Men’s indoor track and field: Timothy Armstrong, East Valley/Community Colleges of Spokane, senior, exercise science; Jordan Curncutt, Mead, junior, finance; Nathan Fall, North Central, sophomore, environmental science; Warren Miller, St. John-Endicott, sophomore, computer engineering technology.
Women’s indoor track and field: Jessi Johnson, Clarkston, junior, applied developmental psychology; Chelsea Lawhead, Coeur d’Alene/CCS, senior, exercise science.
• Whitworth swimming star Rory Buck and Pirates head coach Steve Schadt are in South Africa to prepare for the final steps of achieving Buck’s dream of making the 2012 London Olympics. Buck, from Dubai in the United Arab Emirates, will compete in the 100- and 200-meter breaststroke events at this week’s South African National Aquatics Championships, which serve as the country’s Olympic Trials for swimming. Buck is seeded third in both distances.
To qualify for the 2012 Olympics, Buck, the two-time NCAA Division III champion in both events, will have to finish in the top two and reach the automatic Olympic qualifying mark in the event. His lifetime-best time is less than 2 seconds off of the Olympic “A” cut in the 100 and less than 5 seconds off in the 200.
Last year, Buck finished second in the 200 and third in the 100 breaststrokes at the South African Nationals.
Letters of intent
Gonzaga volleyball: Jordan Gasser, 5-foot-10, outside hitter, Mission Viejo, Calif., also plays for T-Street 18-1 select team that won Pacific Northwest Qualifier in Spokane last month; Halle McCullough, 6-2, right-side hitter, Colorado Springs, Colo.
Idaho women’s tennis: Rita Bermudez, Tucson, Ariz., Arizona Division II state singles champion as a junior, ranked No. 3 in Arizona and No. 17 in the Southwest.
Meagan Ganzer, a 2011 All-American at Washington State, was named to the Puerto Rican Volleyball Federation professional league all-star team. The 6-foot-3 rightside hitter led the league in points in her rookie season, playing for a Ponce Lions team that advanced to postseason play.
She dominated the league during the regular season with 425 points.
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