Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Rhines, Tuppeny Enter Varsity Club Hall of Fame

Villanova track and field giants Jen Rhines and Jim Tuppeny are among nine Villanova athletic greats inducted into the 2012 class of the Varsity Club. Here is the press release from Villanova:

Varsity Club Hall of Fame Announces 2012 Induction Class
Nine new members to be inducted to Hall of Fame

Dec. 5, 2012

VILLANOVA, Pa. - The induction class for 2012 to the Varsity Club Hall of Fame was announced today and nine new members, each from a different sport, will be formally inducted at the 37th Annual Hall of Fame Awards Dinner on Friday, February 8 at the Connelly Center. In addition to the nine new Hall of Fame members the Jake Nevin Award will be presented to former baseball coach and athletics administrator Larry Shane.

The members of the 2012 Hall of Fame induction class are David Herr (baseball), Jason Lawson (men's basketball), Denise Dillon (women's basketball), Tyrone Frazier (football), Ken Delgatto (men's lacrosse), Amy Meisinger (softball), Tom Tracey (men's swimming & diving), Jim Tuppeny (track & field) and Jen Rhines (women's track & field).

Ticket information for the Hall of Fame Awards dinner on February 8 will be announced at a later date and will be available for purchase at The honorees will also be recognized at halftime of the basketball game on Saturday, February 9 against USF at the Pavilion.

Below are capsules of each of the 10 honorees.


Herr is one of the top pitchers in the history of the Villanova baseball program and his academic accomplishments are equally impressive to those that came on the diamond. Herr ranks in the top 10 in school history in four career categories, including being tied for third with 20 victories. He also is tied for fourth in the Wildcats record book in complete game (12), is sixth in strikeouts (209) and ranks 10th in innings pitched (241). Herr is a two-time All-BIG EAST selection who earned first team honors in 1993 and garnered second team recognition in 1995. His career stats include 50 appearances with a 20-11 record, five saves and three shutouts. He was chosen as the 1995 Villanova Male Senior Student-Athlete of the Year and earned CoSIDA Academic All-America honors in 1993. Herr was also a two-time BIG EAST Academic All-Star and received an NCAA Post-Graduate Scholarship.


Lawson is one of the top defensive players in school history and as a senior in 1997 was named the BIG EAST Defensive Player of the Year. He is the all-time Villanova leader in blocked shots with 375 and during his career was a three-time second team All-BIG EAST selection. Lawson tallied 21 career double-doubles and averaged 11.9 points per game to finish his collegiate career with 1,565 points, the 22nd-most in school history. Lawson was a member of the 1995 BIG EAST All-Tournament Team when the Wildcats won the conference championship and was also the 1994 Big Five Rookie of the Year.

Denise Dillon (WOMEN'S BASKETBALL, 1992-96)

Dillon earned BIG EAST postseason honors all four years of her Villanova career. She was named to the All-Rookie team in 1993, was selected to the All-BIG EAST second team in 1994 and 1996 and received first team accolades in 1995. Dillon was also a three-time first team All-Big Five selection and finished her career with totals of 1,355 points, 677 rebounds, 228 assists and 193 steals. She ranks eighth in school history in both points and rebounds and is one of only four players in school history with at least 1,300 points, 600 rebounds and 200 assists. Villanova won 68 games with a .643 winning percentage during her career, including a 21-7 mark in 1995-96.


Frazier was a consensus first team All-American in 1994 and that season was also named first team All-ECAC and first team All-Yankee Conference. For the season Frazier led the Wildcats with 150 tackles and had six tackles for loss, including four quarterback sacks. Despite suffering a season-ending injury in the second game of his senior year Frazier posted career totals of 218 tackles (125 solo, 93 assisted) and had 10 tackles for loss, including four sacks. He was a freshman on the 1992 Villanova squad which went 9-3 and reached the playoffs.


Delgatto was a top offensive player for Villanova during the program's early years as a varsity sport. His career stats include 62 goals and 52 assists for 114 points, all of which rank among the best in school history to this day. Delgatto ranks 10th in school history for career points, 11th in career assists and is 15th in goals. He was named the 1981 Rookie of the Year and that season had 16 goals and 12 assists while leading the team in both assists and ground balls. He led the team in points, assists and ground balls as a sophomore before finishing his career leading the Wildcats in scoring and goals as a senior. Delgatto was also second on the squad in assists and ground balls while helping lead Villanova to an 11-1 record in 1984.


Meisinger is among the career Villanova leaders in victories, complete game and shutouts. She is fourth in school history with 45 complete games and sixth with 42 victories, while also tying for fourth place in career shutouts. Meisinger earned first team All-BIG EAST accolades in 1992 and was a third team CoSIDA Academic All-American that same year.


Tracey enjoyed a standout career for the Wildcats and holds seven school records, including two individual records and five relays. He is the school record holder in both the 100 and 200 yard backstroke with top times of 47.44 and 1:44.26 in those events, respectively. Tracey is also part of school records in the 200 and 400 medley relays, as well as the 200, 400 and 800 freestyle relays. He was a five-time All-American during his collegiate career, including three times in the 100 backstroke (1995, 1996, 1997) and once each in the 200 backstroke (1997) and the 400 medley relay (1996).


Tuppeny had two stints as an assistant coach at Villanova and is also well-known in the Philadelphia area for serving as the director of the Penn Relays for 17 years. He first came to the Wildcats in 1953 and was an assistant coach until 1966, during which time he helped the Villanova program produce 15 outdoor national champions. Tuppeny also coached Olympians Ron Delany, Charlie Jenkins, Larry James and Don Bragg in his first Villanova coaching stint. After serving as head coach at Penn (1966-79) and the director of the Penn Relays (1970-87), Tuppeny returned to the Wildcats in 1994 and was still coaching at the time of his death. In 1998-99 he celebrated his 50th year of coaching.


Rhines was a star distance runner for Villanova during one of the most successful periods in the history of the program. She helped lead the Wildcats cross country team to national titles in 1992, 1993 and 1994 while also finishing as the individual national champion in 1994 and the runner-up the year before. She was a two-time NCAA Cross Country All-American and a six-time individual national champion counting cross country, indoor track and outdoor track. She won the outdoor national title in the 5000 meters three straight years from 1994-96 and was a two-time indoor national champion in 1995, when she won the 5000 meters and anchored the Wildcats champion distance medley relay. Rhines was also an eight-time BIG EAST individual champion, including five times indoors and three times outdoors. She was inducted onto the Wall of Fame in Villanova Stadium in 1999 and has competed in three Olympics (2000, 2004, 2008).


Shane first came to Villanova in 1963 and he spent the next 35 years as a baseball coach and an athletics administrator. After serving as an assistant baseball coach from 1963-72 he was head coach from 1973-85. During his time as head coach he led the Wildcats to 153 wins, the fifth most in the nearly 150-year history of the program. Villanova made consecutive appearances in the ECAC South Division Playoffs in 1980 and 1981 and during those two seasons compiled a combined record of 41-19 (.683). Shane had five players chosen in the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft while he was head coach and five of his players have been inducted to the Varsity Club Hall of Fame. Following his head coaching career Shane was an athletics administrator in the Student Services office from 1985 until his retirement in 1998.

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