Sept. 29, 2010
Eight outstanding Bruins who have excelled as student-athletes, coaches or administrators will be inducted into the UCLA Athletics Hall of Fame this Friday night, October 1.
Invitation-only ceremonies will be held in the Athletics Hall of Fame, located in the J.D. Morgan Intercollegiate Athletics Center, and in Covel Commons. In addition, the new inductees will also be introduced during halftime of Saturday's UCLA-Washington State football game at the Rose Bowl.
The UCLA Athletics Hall of Fame was dedicated in 1984 with 25 charter members. The Class of 2010 brings the total membership to 239. The 2010 inductees are David Ashleigh, men's water polo; Andy Banachowski, women's volleyball coach; Judith Holland, administration; Mebrahtom Keflezighi, men's track & field; Valorie Kondos Field, women's gymnastics coach; Seilala Sua, women's track & field; Chase Utley, baseball; and Catherine Von Schwarz, women's water polo.
Following are biographies on the 2010 UCLA Hall of Fame inductees:
DAVID ASHLEIGH -- After spending two years at Cerritos College and being named the school's Athlete of the Year for 1963, Ashleigh came to UCLA and was a member of Coach Bob Horn's swimming and water polo teams for two seasons. In water polo, Ashleigh was a First-Team All-American in 1963 and 1965. He redshirted in 1964 in order to play that year with the U.S. Olympic Team. UCLA's team went undefeated in 1965 and won the collegiate national championship. Ashleigh competed for USA Water Polo from 1964-68 and was a member two Olympic teams. In 1978, Ashleigh was enshrined into the U.S. Water Polo Hall of Fame. Ashleigh also excelled as a swimmer at UCLA, setting school records in the 1650 freestyle, 500 freestyle, 200 breaststroke, and the 400 individual medley. He earned First-Team All-America honors in the 1650 freestyle in 1963 and '65.
ANDY BANACHOWSKI -- As a student-athlete, Banachowski was a two-time All-America volleyball player for UCLA men's coach Al Scates and led the Bruins to USVBA National Championships in 1965 and 1967. However, Banachowski achieved legendary status for building the UCLA women's volleyball program into a national powerhouse. Until his retirement in January, Banachowski served as the Bruins' head coach for 43 years. He guided the Bruins to six national championships and 1,106 victories, the most in collegiate women's volleyball history. Banachowski was named Pac-10 Coach of the Year five times, the Tachikara/AVCA National Coach of the Year in 1989 and 2006, and Volleyball Magazine Coach of the Year five times. He also received what is considered USA Volleyball's highest honor: the All-Time Great Coach Award while simultaneously winning the George L. Fisher "Leader in Volleyball" award, which recognized his off-court endeavors. Banachowski's players earned 98 all-conference awards, 49 All-Pacific Region honors, five Pac-10 Player of the Year plaques, and three Honda Award trophies, given to the nation's top collegiate player. No less than 18 of his athletes earned 32 AVCA All-America honors and more than 20 former Bruins trained with the U.S. National Team. Banachowski also doubled as Scates' chief assistant from 1972-77, a period in which the Bruins won four NCAA men's titles (1972, '74, '75, '76). All told, Banachowski was involved with 12 UCLA national championship teams either as a player, assistant coach or head coach. In 1997, Banachowski became the first women's volleyball coach in history to be inducted into the National Volleyball Hall of Fame.
DR. JUDITH HOLLAND -- Holland came to UCLA as the Women's Athletic Director in 1974 and later became the Senior Associate Athletic Director when the men's and women's departments merged in 1980. From 1975-79, she oversaw the women's athletic department and after the departments combined, she assumed major responsibilities for both men's and women's sports. Throughout her twenty-plus years at UCLA, Holland was regarded as the nation's foremost women's athletics administrator. In 1980, she was the driving force behind the merger between the AIAW and the NCAA, which is now responsible for the tremendous popularity and achievement of women's college athletics. Under her guidance, UCLA won the national combined program award, symbolic of the nation's top women's program, a record 10 times and finished no lower than second in the award's 17-year history. During that time, the Bruins won a total of 37 national championships. While at UCLA, Holland was the chair of the NCAA Women's Basketball committee (1989-93), chair of the Olympic Liaison Committee, vice-president of the Pac-10 Conference, and chair of the Pac-10 Gender Equity and Compliance Review Committees. She also served as Competition Director of the Olympic Games basketball venue in Los Angeles and as a member of the USA Basketball Board of Directors. Holland was the impetus behind UCLA hosting an NCAA record six championships in 1984 as part of the L.A. Olympic celebration. During Holland's tenure in Westwood, UCLA hosted more NCAA and Regional Championship events than any other university. Holland also founded and served as chair of the Honda Awards program that honors the nation's top female collegiate athletes each year. In 1990, she received the university's highest service award when she was honored by the UCLA Alumni Association.
MEBRAHTOM KEFLEZIGHI -- From 1995-98, Keflezighi became one of the most successful Bruin distance runners in history. During his UCLA career, he was a four-time cross country All-American, a two-time Pac-10 cross country champion, and captured the individual NCAA cross country championship in 1997 -- a UCLA first. In 1997, Keflezighi won NCAA track titles in both the indoor and outdoor 5,000 meters and the outdoor 10,000 meters. He also won Pac-10 titles in the 5,000m (1996, 1997). In addition, Keflezighi holds the UCLA record in both the 10,000m (28:16.79) and the 5,000m (13:26.85). After leaving UCLA, Keflezighi has enjoyed international success at several distances and has helped bring American distance running back into the limelight. He is a three-time USATF 10,000m champion and still holds the U.S. record at that distance with a time of 27:13.98. At the 2004 Athens Olympics, Keflezighi won the silver medal in the marathon, becoming America's first marathon medalist since 1976. In the fall of 2009, he became a national sensation when he became the first American in 27 years to win the New York City Marathon with a time of 2:09.15. He also won the 2009 U.S. Half Marathon Championships in a personal best time of 1:01.25.
VALORIE KONDOS FIELD -- Since arriving at UCLA in 1983 as a student coach, Valorie Kondos Field has ascended the ranks as an assistant coach and choreographer, co-head coach (1991-94) and then sole head coach since 1995. Kondos Field has positioned UCLA as the premier program in collegiate gymnastics by guiding it to an overall record of 391-86-1, 15 Pac-10 titles, 17 Regional crowns and six NCAA titles (1997, 2000, 2001, 2003, 2004 and 2010). In 2010, UCLA won NCAA, Regional and Pac-10 championships and produced two NCAA individual champions. In 2003, the Bruins recorded an unprecedented five team scores of 198.0 or better en route to the NCAA title. The 2004 team set an NCAA Championship record by scoring 198.125. In 2001, UCLA gymnasts won the NCAA floor, uneven bars and all-around events and every Bruin who competed earned All-America honors. That year, Kondos Field was voted the NACGC National Coach of the Year for the fourth time. Kondos Field has coached 15 athletes to 30 NCAA individual titles, she has mentored 17 Pac-10 Gymnasts of the Year and 10 Olympians since the year 2000. She also has coached four Honda Award winners - Jill Andrews, Mohini Bhardwaj, Onnie Willis and Kristen Maloney.
SEILALA SUA -- Seilala Sua, the most successful athlete in NCAA track and field history, was a seven-time NCAA champion and 14-time All-American in multiple events. As a Bruin from 1997-2000, Sua competed in the shot put, discus, hammer and javelin, where she still ranks among UCLA's Top 10 in each throwing event. In Pac-10 competition, Sua also won six individual titles and was a two-time Pac-10 Women's Track and Field Athlete of the Year. In NCAA competition, she won six outdoor titles and one indoor crown. Sua won four consecutive NCAA discus competitions and became only the second woman in NCAA history to win four straight individual titles in the same event. As a professional athlete, Sua has established herself as a national and international success: member of the 2000 Olympic Team, four-time USATF discus national champion, a USATF national champion in the shot put and a three-time World Championships competitor. Sua has ranked in the Top 10 nationally in the discus for eight consecutive years and recorded the No. 6 mark in the world in 2001. While competing in the shot put, she also ranked in the Top 10 nationally for seven consecutive years.
CHASE UTLEY -- Utley wasted no time making his mark on UCLA's baseball program. Playing from 1998-2000, he hit .320 in his first season while breaking the freshman school record for home runs (15), and earning a spot on the Freshman All-America Team. As a sophomore, he was a First-Team All-American while hitting .355 in conference play. He established a reputation for toughness and durability by playing in every single inning that season. His .382 batting average, 22 home runs, and 69 RBIs as a junior helped him once again earn First-Team All-America honors and he helped lead the Bruins to the NCAA Super Regional for the first time in school history. In his career, he was twice an All-Pac-10 first-team member and compiled a .342 career batting average. In 2000, the Philadelphia Phillies selected Utley 15th overall in the MLB Draft. In 2009, Utley enjoyed one of the most prolific batting streaks in World Series history. In the six-game series he tore through the Yankees, hitting five home runs, two more than eventual Series MVP Hideki Matsui, and tied Reggie Jackson for the most homers in a World Series. Since entering the majors, he has averaged .295, hit 161 home runs, and recorded 585 RBIs. A fan favorite, he is a four-time NL All-Star as well as a four-time Silver Slugger Award winner. Just recently, he was voted No. 6 on the Sporting News' list of the top 50 players in baseball.
CATHARINE VON SCHWARZ -- A four-time All-America water polo player at UCLA (1996-98, 2000), von Schwarz became the first female team member in UCLA history to win four national championships. Von Schwarz ended her four-year UCLA career with a total of 186 goals, which currently ranks second on UCLA's all time list. Her 59 goals in 1998 and 50 goals in 1997 still rank sixth and ninth, respectively. She also made an impact on the national team, participating from 1995-2003 and playing in more than 100 international matches, notably leading the U.S. to a runner-up finish the 1999 Pan American Games and a fourth place result in the 2001 World Championship. In addition, von Schwarz played for two years in the A-1 Pro League in Italy. As a Bruin, von Schwarz made an immediate impact in her first season, scoring 35 goals on 48 attempts and earning second-team All-America honors. In UCLA's 8-4 victory over California in the 1996 National Collegiate Championship game, she scored two goals. In her second season, von Schwarz once again earned second-team All-America honors, scoring 50 goals and leading UCLA to its second consecutive National Collegiate Championship. As a junior in 1998, von Schwarz scored 59 goals including one goal in UCLA's 7-3 victory over California in the national championship match. She was also named a First-Team All-American after her junior year. After redshirting the 1999 season to train with the U.S. National Team, von Schwarz rejoined the Bruins in 2000 and helped lead UCLA to another national championship. For her contributions, she was named team MVP and she finished the season with 42 goals and earned First-Team All-America honors.