UMass Dartmouth Corsair Hall of Fame Class of 2002

 

With his induction into the UMass Dartmouth Corsair Athletic Hall of Fame, Bruce Violante '65 joins a select group of only two other Hall of Famers with varsity letters in three sports. From 1961 through 1965, while competing for New Bedford Institute of Technology, Violante played soccer, basketball and baseball. In basketball, he was among the top scorers in the region, ranked among the top 20 scorers in the conference. He averaged 20 points per game throughout his career. In baseball, Violante was a standout shortstop and outstanding hitter, batting over .300 for four years. He served as captain of both the basketball and baseball teams and also played three seasons of varsity soccer as well. Violante remains active in local athletics, serving as a veteran football official in the southeastern Massachusetts area.

Kenneth Whitten joins the UMass Dartmouth Corsair Athletic Hall of Fame posthumously after passing away unexpectedly in July of 2001. The records will show that Ken Whitten was an assistant ice hockey coach with John Rolli for the last 17 seasons and an employee in the UMass Dartmouth Athletic Department's equipment room for more than 10 years. Whitten had also served as an ice hockey coach at Bristol County Regional Agricultural High School before joining the then SMU ice hockey program back in the early 1980's. He worked in several capacities for Facilities Management, Inc, the company that runs the Hetland Arena in New Bedford.

But Whitten's contributions to the student-athletes, the coaches and the Athletic Department as a whole went much further than what the records show. He was a friend to every Corsair ice hockey player for the last 17 seasons and one of the quiet people behind the scenes who has helped UMass Dartmouth ice hockey become on of the most successful Division III programs in New England. Following his death, a memorial fund was established in his memory to benefit the ice hockey program at UMass Dartmouth.

Paula Freischlag (Gendron) '86 competed in both cross country and track at SMU for four seasons, earning a long list of records and accomplishments in both sports. In her first season of competition, she was the Corsairs' fourth cross country runner on a team which finished fourth in the NCAA nationals at Fredonia, NY, running behind three teammates who each earned All-America status. SMU posted a 5-0 record that season with a fifth place finish at the All-New Englands and captured the New England Division III championships. As a junior, she was an ECAC Division III all-star and was the Corsairs' top runner and the following year, as a senior, she was team co-captain as the second runner behind Nicole Fogerty, a Division III All-America selection. In 1984, she qualified for and ran in the Division III nationals in the 10,000 meters. During that season, she set a school record in the 10,000 meters at 37:50.8, a record that still stands today.

David Hurley '87 played baseball for SMU from 1983 through 1986 and was Coach Bruce Wheeler's top pitchers throughout his career. Fifteen years after his graduation, Hurley's name still dominates the Corsair record book like no other pitcher. Hurley is ranked first in several categories, including games started in a season (15 twice), innings pitched in a season (109), career starts (52), career innings pitched (394), and career victories (30). He ranks second all-time in complete games (25), is tied for second in single season wins (10) and is third in career appearances (67). His 204 career strikeouts were fourth best in the 30-year history of baseball at SMU and UMass Dartmouth. In his four years with the Corsairs, Hurley was both a starter and a relief pitcher who took the baseball whenever the Corsairs needed him most.

For three seasons, Aaron Lee '96 was part of some of the most successful men's basketball teams in UMass Dartmouth history. Following his outstanding career, Lee set Corsair career records for most three-pointers in a game (eight), most three-pointers in a season (96) and most career three-point field goals (313). Among the Corsairs' all-time scorers, Lee's 1,915 points ranks him fifth and his 39 points against Eastern Connecticut in 1992-93 is tied for fourth all-time. As a sophomore in 1992-93, Lee was part of a 25-6 season which including an LEC regular season and tournament championship. He was an LEC Tournament, NCAA Sectional All-Tournament, LEC and ECAC first team selection. The following season, the Corsairs were 22-6, advanced to the third round of the NCAA Tournament as Lee was a First Team selection by the NABC, ECAC, LEC, and LEC Tournament. In his senior season, the Corsairs went 24-4 with LEC regular season and tournament championships and advanced to the second round of the NCAA's. Lee was a first team NABC All-Northeast Region All-Star. In his three years with the Corsairs, Lee averaged 19.5, 20.3 and 19.5 points respectively.

Coached by the late Celestino Macedo, 1962 New Bedford Institute of Technology Golf Team was the first golf team at one of UMass Dartmouth's predecessor schools to win an NAIA New England Championship. The members of the team reads like a Who's Who of the local golf scene including, Dr. William Marginson, Captain, Peter Guisti, Frederick Purrington, Peter Bass, James Osborne, the late Robert LaFlamme and Norman Secea. The team began as an informal gathering of Marginson and his golfing friends. They had some trouble finding a coach before drafting Macedo, a former Dean of Students at SMU. During their first season in 1962, the team captured a conference championship and the NAIA Division III New England championship. The team earned an invitation to the NAIA national championship tournament in Oklahoma, but was unable to participate because of a lack of funds for the trip.