Caldwell University Athletics, in conjunction with Cougar Pride, welcomed back its 2015 Hall of Fame Class last Friday night as part of Homecoming Weekend. Family and friends of the five new inductees were greeted with a reception in the Newman Center and their accomplishments were recognized by Assistant Vice President/Director of Athletics Mark A. Corino. The Caldwell Athletics Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will take place on Friday, October 30 at Cedar Hill Country Club in Livingston, N.J at 6:30 pm.
The Caldwell Athletics Hall of Fame Ceremony will begin with cocktail hour begins at 6:30 p.m., followed by dinner and the Hall of Fame ceremony at 7:30 p.m. Cost is $125 per person. Tickets for alumni, faculty and staff are $100. All proceeds will go to the Cougar Pride General Fund, which supports the degree completion program and enhancements for the 15 intercollegiate athletic programs. Tickets are available for the Caldwell Athletics Hall of Fame Ceremony by calling Caldwell University Athletics at (973) 618-3260.
Hotel accommodations will also be available for the October 30 event at FairBridge Hotel and Conference Center located at 130 Route10 West in East Hanover, NJ. The group rate of $79 per night plus taxes and fees is available prior to October 21. Please call to make reservations under the block name of Caldwell University Hall of Fame at 973-386-5622. A van service from the FairBridge Hotel to the Cedar Hill Country Club will be provided.
“We are extremely excited and proud to be welcoming our five new inductees to the Hall of Fame,” said Corino. “We are looking forward to an outstanding evening at Cedar Hill Country Club on October 30 that will consist of administration, staff and current hall of famers in attendance. These new inductees are exceptional people who have contributed to our athletic department and our university in a positive manner.”
The Caldwell University Athletics Hall of Fame was established in 2010 to honor student-athletes, coaches and contributors who have played significant roles in the success of the intercollegiate athletic programs at Caldwell University. There are now 37 members in the Hall of Fame, which is located on the first floor of the George R. Newman Center. The Hall of Fame Dinner is the main fundraising event for Cougar Pride, the official booster club of Caldwell University Athletics.
The 2015 class of the Caldwell University Athletics Hall of Fame includes Ed Elam ’97 (men’s basketball), Dan Keller ‘00 (baseball), Shenee Clarke ’04 (women’s basketball), Miguel Walker ’07 (men’s soccer) and Kristee Paknis ’08 (women’s soccer). Additionally, Cougar Pride will present Mark Reda with a special award for his continued support of the Caldwell University Athletics Department and its student-athletes.
Ed Elam helped the Cougar men’s basketball team Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference championships in 1993 and 1996, giving the Cougars an athletic guard who could get to the basket and play tough defense. The program’s all-time leader in steals with 238, Elam set a school record with 73 steals as a senior on the 1996 championship squad.
Dan Keller was an offensive catalyst on Caldwell’s early baseball teams. A two-time all-CACC selection, he batted .409 as a sophomore and .371 as a junior, helping the Cougars advance to the CACC championship game in 1999. Keller recorded a program-best 139 runs in 115 career games and ranks seventh all-time at Caldwell in batting average (.352) and doubles (30).
Shenee Clarke received all-CACC honors three times as an electric guard for the Caldwell women’s basketball team. A force on both ends of the court, Clarke holds the school record for career steals (298) and ranks sixth on the Cougars’ all-time scoring list with 1,583 points. As a junior she was named the Most Valuable Player of the 2003 CACC Tournament as Caldwell captured its second conference title.
Miguel Walker came to Caldwell from Jamaica in 2003 and quickly became the heart and soul of some of the Cougars’ best soccer teams. A crafty ball-winner and central midfielder, Walker received all-CACC honors twice while serving as the team captain for two seasons. Caldwell made the CACC Tournament semifinals all four of Walker’s years, advancing to the finals in 2003 and 2005.
Kristee Paknis led the Cougar women’s soccer team in scoring and made the all-CACC team in all four of her seasons at Caldwell. A skilled offensive midfielder, she ranks second all-time at Caldwell in goals (33), assists (21) and points (87). As a senior in 2008, Paknis was named to the all-Region and all-CACC first teams after registering 30 points on 12 goals and six assists.