COLUMBUS, Ohio – Six former Panther student-athletes comprise the 2011 Ohio Dominican Athletic Hall of Fame class, and that group will be recognized during the Homecoming ceremonies the weekend on Friday and Saturday, Sept. 23-24.
A trio of baseball players (Juan Canales, Kyle Mackie and Joe Purritano), two softball players (Andrea Cummings-Kubik and Melissa Wright-Rodgers) and one volleyball player (Kathy Fox-Earles) make up the 2011 class, which is the sixth in school history. The inaugural class was inducted in 1996-97, and there are now 27 members of the ODU Athletic Hall of Fame.
The group will be honored at the Athletic Hall of Fame Recognition Dinner on Friday evening, Sept. 23 in the Bishop James A. Griffin Student Center and will also be recognized during a ceremony at halftime of the football game, which kicks off at 7 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 24 against Wayne State.
Induction into the Ohio Dominican Athletic Hall of Fame is one of the highest honors that a Panther student-athlete can receive. The Hall of Fame formally recognizes former students and coaches who excelled in Ohio Dominican athletics as well as friends of the university who helped to advance the overall athletics program to new levels. The Hall of Fame encourages student athletes to strive to attain the highest standards of performance and conduct.
"We are honored to welcome these six individuals into the Hall of Fame,” Athletic Director Jeff Blair said. “They represent the best of Ohio Dominican athletics and are a strong part of our proud tradition and history. We look forward to welcoming them back to campus and celebrating their accomplishments.”
Juan Canales (’94) earned First Team All-Mid Ohio Conference honors in both 1990 and 1993, swatting 16 home runs in the ’93 campaign. He was named Honorable Mention All-American in 1993 while also picking up NAIA All District 22 honors along with NAIA All Great Lakes Region Team honors. Canales drove in 69 runs in 1993 and had 49 RBI in 1992.
Kathy Fox-Earles (’96), a three-year captain for the Panther volleyball squad, garnered First Team All-Mid Ohio Conference honors as a junior and senior. As a sophomore, she picked up Second Team All-MOC honors and was named to the All-Mid Ohio Conference Freshman Team in her first year. Following her senior campaign, Earles Fox earned the ODU Scholar-Athlete of the Year award. A two-time Academic All-MOC pick, Earles Fox is fourth on ODU’s all-time kills and is the school’s all-time leader in blocks. She also spent 13 years as an assistant coach for ODU after finishing her playing career.
Andrea Cummings-Kubik (’93), the 1990 Mid-Ohio Conference Pitcher of the Year, is one of the most decorated softball players in school history. She was a two-time First Team All-Mid Ohio Conference performer who also picked up four all-district honors during her career. She won 16 games in 1990 and 18 games in 1991 and struck out 316 hitters in her career.
Kyle Mackie (’01) earned Honorable Mention NAIA All-American accolades in 2000 and was a three-time First Team All-American Mideast Conference performer. Mackie also picked up Second Team All-Mid Ohio Conference honors after his freshman year. He excelled in the classroom as well, earning a pair of NAIA All-American Scholar athlete awards and two All-American Mideast Conference Scholar Athlete awards. Mackie is the all-time leader in runs scored (238), hits (308), doubles (55), RBI (222) and his 229 games played are tied for the most in school history.
Joe Purritano (’81) was the first All-American in Ohio Dominican history, earning that honor after his senior season. A two-time First Team All-Mid Ohio Conference, Purritano also picked up NAIA All-District 22 and NAIA All Great Lakes Region Team distinctions after his senior campaign. He batted .484 that season, with 13 doubles, six home runs and 26 RBI, along with 28 runs scored, 23 steals and 20 walks, leading the team in all categories.
Melissa Wright-Rodgers (’02) was recognized as the ODU Senior Athlete of the Year after her final season with the Panthers. Wright-Rodgers earned a pair of First Team All-American Mideast Conference nods, coming after her junior and senior season, and was named Second Team All-American Mideast Conference as a sophomore. Wright-Rodgers threw the first perfect game in school history and also tossed four no-hitters in her career.