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Wednesday, July 15, 2009Posted by Jess Bouchard
2009 Golden Hawk Hall of Fame
WATERLOO, Ont. - In October, the doors of the Wilfrid Laurier Department of Athletics and Recreation Hall of Fame will once again open to receive seven new members of the Golden Hawk family. Over Homecoming weekend, five athletes, one builder and the first women’s hockey provincial championship team will be recognized as the members of the 2009 class.

This year’s athletes include Alison Goodman (women’s hockey and soccer), Cathy Ingalls (women’s volleyball), Kate Jackson (women’s rugby), and James Hitchen and Justin Shakell (men’s football). Alumnus Bill Ballard will enter the Hall of Fame as a builder and the 1998-1999 women’s hockey team will become the 14th roster inducted.

This year’s Golden Hawk Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will take place on Friday, October 2, 2009 at the Senate and Board Chamber at Wilfrid Laurier University. The reception will begin at 6 p.m. and the dinner will follow at 7 p.m. Tickets cost $65.00 per person. Please join us in celebrating Golden Hawk excellence.

To reserve your seat now, please e-mail halloffame@laurierathletics.com or purchase them online here. For more information, please contact Heather Ferris at (519) 884-0710 ext. 3289 or hferris@wlu.ca.

Here’s a closer look at the accomplishments of these Golden Hawks that led to their induction as the Class of 2009.

Alison Goodman took no time to prove she was an important part of the foundation of the women’s hockey program that continues to be one of the most dominant teams in the country. In her first season she was named Team Rookie of the Year. Alison would earn OUA first or second team all-star honours each of her four seasons and three CIS first team all-Canadian awards. She helped the Lady Hawks win two provincial titles, including the title that began the current run of six for the women’s hockey program. In 2003-2004 she was named the women’s hockey Most Valuable Player and joined the women’s soccer team to earn another OUA first team all-star nod. The five-time all-star finished an incredible 2003-2004 season winning the Laurier President’s Award and the OUA female Athlete of the Year award. She was also nominated for the BLG national Athlete of the Year Award.

Cathy Ingalls consistently displayed her natural leadership skills and tremendous volleyball abilities on and off the court. Cathy was a key contributor to a huge turnaround for the women’s volleyball program, as the team reached the playoffs each year that she was on its roster. She earned numerous individual awards including Team Rookie of the Year, Team Most Valuable Player twice, and four OUA first team all-star nods. In 2001-2002 as a first team all-Canadian, Cathy led the Lady Hawks to a perfect regular season record of 18-0 and the provincial semi-finals. As a captain in her last season she was honoured with the OUA West Division Award of Merit, celebrating leadership and contribution to the university community.

Kate Jackson is continuously remembered as an important part of women’s rugby at Wilfrid Laurier. Kate played three seasons in the purple and gold and was instrumental in bringing the Golden Hawks into the OUA as a founding member of the team. The former Business graduate showed great leadership and was a role model on the team for the rookies and new recruits. In her final season Kate helped Laurier to its best year up to that point in team history and earned OUA first team all-star honours. She was also named the women’s rugby Most Valuable Player and was selected as a CIS first team all-Canadian.

Justin Shakell arrived at Laurier as a well-rounded multi-sport athlete who had been sought after by countless schools in the OUA to play defensive lineman for their football programs. Justin dressed every game during his freshman year and was one of the building blocks behind three Yates Cup appearances during his five-year career. On the defensive side of the ball his impact was felt in many ways. Justin was second on the team with three sacks that year and his locker room presence and leadership continued to grow earning him the 2001 football Most Valuable Player award. In the next season he was recognized as an OUA first team all-star. In his final year Justin was a key contributor to the trip to the Yates Cup for the Golden Hawks. That year he was a team captain and earned both OUA first team all-star and CIS first team all-Canadian honours as well as his second Laurier football Most Valuable Player award.

James Hitchen excelled as an offensive lineman with the Golden Hawks football program for four years. James came in and worked hard in training camp, earning a starting position during his freshman year. He would go on to maintain this position throughout his entire career. His efforts on the offensive line earned him the Laurier football Rookie of the Year award in 1997. In his third season, James was named an OUA second team all-star and helped Laurier reach the Yates Cup for the first time in four years. His final season was in 2000 and James was named one of the team’s captains. In the same year, the Golden Hawks again made it to the Yates Cup and James’ superb play not only earned him an OUA first team all-star award but he was also named a CIS first team all-Canadian. James continued to work with the Laurier Football program as Offensive Line Assistant Coach from 2003-2005, finally winning both the Yates Cup and the Vanier Cup in 2005.

Bill Ballard has been one of the most influential and important contributors to Wilfrid Laurier University since he was a student at the school in the late 1960s. Frequently visible in the stands at Laurier Football games, Bill has always been someone who puts others before himself and is described by fellow alumni as being “all about fun and enthusiastic” towards his alma mater. Bill’s contributions began as the President of the Student Union in 1969 when he convinced the Board of Governors to build an athletics facility on the school’s property at the corner of King and University. The construction of the Athletic Complex would begin in 1973 and was the beginning of what would eventually become the home of Golden Hawk basketball, volleyball, and swimming. Bill has been one of the most significant contributors to the Golden Hawks over the last 30 years. He was the lead donor in the 2007 University Stadium and Knight-Newbrough Field renovations as well as the construction of Alumni Field. The Country Road Athletic Bursary fund was created and funded by Bill and he ranks in the Laurier Visionary category for his total support since his graduation.

The 1998-1999 season was a turning point for women’s hockey at Laurier. That year saw many important steps for the program and marked the beginning of a dynasty that has continued over the past 11 seasons. Entering in the OUA competition, the team was coming off three consecutive bronze medal finishes and had yet to break through the ceiling and reach the OUA championship game. It all came together for the purple and gold that season. Led by all-stars Lisa Backman (first team OUA and CIS all-Canadian), Cheryl Pounder (first team OUA) and Kim Shillington (second team OUA) the Lady Hawks posted a 14-6 regular season record and matched up with Guelph. After a 3-1 win over the Gryphons, Laurier made the most of their first trip to the provincial title, winning 2-1 over York. This championship was the first of eight over the next 11 years, a run that has the Golden Hawks securely atop the OUA and CIS women’s hockey world.

Wilfrid Laurier University’s Department of Athletics and Recreation is home to 22 varsity sports as well as numerous intramural, recreation and fitness programs. Laurier’s varsity teams have brought home 54 provincial championships as well as 10 national championships in 97 years of competition.

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