UNIVERSITY CENTER - Saginaw Valley State University athletics has officially announced the Cardinal Athletic Hall of Fame Class of 2016. This year's class, the seventh in the history since the inception, consists of five individuals and one pair of teams. Former student-athletes Sonja Duncan (Paquin), Bill Vitti and Evans Lalas will be entering the hall as former student-athletes. Longtime SVSU sports information director Tom Waske will be inducted as a contributor and former men's soccer head coach Cale Wassermann will be entering as a coach. The 2006 and 2007 SVSU bowling national championship teams will also be enshrined in this year's class.
|Sonja Duncan||Evans Lalas||Bill Vitti||Tom Waske||Cale Wassermann|
|2006 Bowling Team||2007 Bowling Team|
Sonja Duncan (Paquin) - Women's Basketball
Duncan played at SVSU from 1983-1986. She holds the program's all-time record for games played with 127 and sits third all-time with 1,721 points scored. Sonja ranks third in field goals made with 765 and third with 311 career steals. Duncan earned honorable mention all-american honors in her final season, 1985-86. The single season records she still holds at Saginaw Valley are: most points (621), most field goals made (278) and most field goal attempts (614). She also holds the record for most career field goal attempts with 1,671. Duncan was a member of the 1984-85 Women's Basketball team that was inducted into the Cardinal Athletic Hall of fame in 2015, as that team was the national runner-up during that season.
Evans Lalas - Men's Track & Field
Lalas was an eight-time All-American for his SVSU career, earning those honors during the 1980, 81 and 82 seasons. He was a member of the 1982 1,600 Meter Relay Team that claimed a NAIA national championship with teammates Eddie Brown, Ricky Brown and Bill Olson. The quartet also was the NCAA runner-up in a time of 3:09.70. Evans posted three straight All-American showings in the 440 yard run during the indoor season. He tacked-on to those honors with a pair of outdoor All-American showings in the 400-meter run during the 1981 and 82 campaigns. Standing the test of time, Lalas' 34-year-old 400-meter record is still the Cardinal standard. Evans was a member of the 1982 Indoor National Championship Team, the University's first-ever national championship. That team was inducted into the Cardinal Athletic Hall of Fame in the inaugural Class of 2010.
Bill Vitti - Men's Basketball
Vitti played for the Cardinals during the 1989-92 seasons. He competed in 112 career games for SVSU, racking-up 1,233 points and 1,045 rebounds. He is the only player in program history to have 1,000 in both categories and he holds the record for career rebounds. Vitti was named the 1988-89 GLIAC Freshman of the Year and earned GLIAC All-Defensive Team honors in all four years. He was named Second Team All-GLIAC, First Team GLIAC All-Defensive Team and First Team All-Great Lakes Region in his senior 1991-92 season. He was named the team's Most Valuable Player that year as well. Vitti holds career records for field goal percentage (61.0) and rebounding average (9.3) while his 66.8% field goal percentage in his freshman season (1988-89) still sits atop the record books.
Tom Waske - Sports Information Director
Waske served as the lead man for Saginaw Valley State Athletics's publicity and promotions efforts for 19 years, spanning from May of 1982 through the April 2001. He was responsible for all the publicity, statistics and publications for the entire athletic department. During Waske's tenure with the Cardinals, SVSU featured 17 varsity sports. He helped initiate the Cardinal Air Force broadcasts of football and men's basketball.
In addition to producing numerous award-winning publications, Waske pioneered implementation of in-game computer statistical software and developed the first Cardinal athletics web site.
Cale Wassermann - Men's Soccer
Wassermann, the former Cardinal head men's soccer coach and men's soccer student-athlete, led the team to national prominence during his five years at the helm of the program. Under his direction, SVSU claimed back-to-back GLIAC Championships in 2011 and 2012 and the GLIAC Tournament title in 2012. He led the team to the NCAA Division II national tournament three times, with a pair of appearances in the NCAA Round of 16. The 2012 squad made a run all the way to the national championship game, finishing runner-up after a school record 18 victories. Wassermann was named the 2012 NSCAA Division II National Coach of the Year following that season. He also earned GLIAC Coach of the Year honors for the 2011 and 2012 seasons. His 64 career victories at the helm of the program are the most in school history and he registered double-digit win totals in four of his five years patrolling the sideline. As a men's soccer student-athlete for the Cardinals, Wassermann was named First Team All-GLIAC in both the 2004 and 2005 seasons.
The 2006 & 2007 Bowling Teams continued the Cardinals' national prominence, claiming the program's third and fourth national championships. The Cards defeated Newman in 2006 to claim the title and put away Robert Morris in 2007 for the title. Dan MacLelland and Anthony LaCaze were named to the All-Tournament Team in 2006, while MacLelland was in 2007 as well. He was the National Tournament Most Valuable Player that year, an honor he would garner in the 2008 and 2009 tournaments as well. MacLelland would go on to be a three-time first team all-american while 2007 teammate J.R. Raymond earned second team honors in 2006. LaCaze earned honorable mention all-american plaudits in the 2006 campaign. The team was led by legendary coach, Dan Dorion, the Cardinal Athletic Hall of Fame Class of 2015 inductee who led his teams to four national championships and three national runner-up finishes.
The 2016 Cardinal Athletic Hall of Fame Banquet will take place on Saturday, September 24 at 12:00 p.m. at the Curtiss Banquet Halls on the campus of SVSU. It will be held in conjunction with the football team's game versus Ohio Dominican University that evening at 7:00 p.m.