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01/04/2016

Winthrop Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2016 Announced

Quick Facts

 The 2016 Athletics Hall of Fame inductees are Bob Bowen (men's soccer), Daniel Carte (baseball), Ronda Cline (softball), Coach Joel McCartney (volleyball), Torrell Martin (men's basketball), Paige Nichols (softball), and Franco Wahkisi (men's soccer).
 The induction dinner and ceremony are scheduled for Friday, Jan. 29 in the Richardson Ballroom of the DiGiorgio Campus Center at 6 p.m.

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ROCK HILL, SOUTH CAROLINA - Six former student-athletes representing four sports and a former volleyball coach have been selected for induction into the 2016 class of the Winthrop Athletics Hall of Fame. The induction dinner and ceremony are scheduled for Friday, Jan. 29 in the Richardson Ballroom of the DiGiorgio Campus Center at 6 p.m.

Those to be inducted include Bob Bowen (men's soccer), Daniel Carte (baseball), Ronda Cline (softball), Coach Joel McCartney (volleyball), Torrell Martin (men's basketball), Paige Nichols (softball), and Franco Wakhisi (men's soccer).

This induction class will raise the number of former players, coaches and administrators to 73 in the Winthrop Athletics Hall of Fame which was established in 2004.

Here is a brief bio on each of this year's inductees:

Bob Bowen — Bob Bowen (Class of 1982) was an outstanding goalkeeper from 1978 thru 1981 before becoming a Hall of Fame high school coach in North Carolina. He was named an NAIA All-American and a National Soccer Coaches Association All-Region player in 1981, was voted the 1979 NAIA District 6 Player of the Year, and was a three-time District 6 All-Region performer in 1979, 1980 and 1981. Bowen began his coaching career in Charlotte, North Carolina, in 1983. He was the girls head coach at South Mecklenburg High School for five years before taking over as boys head coach at Providence High School for 15 years and the girls coach for two years. He was voted North Carolina Boys Coach of the Year in 1992 and 1997. In 2013, he was inducted into the North Carolina Soccer Coaches Hall of Fame.

Daniel Carte — Daniel Carte (Class of 2014) had an outstanding baseball career before being drafted in the second round of the 2005 MLB Draft as the 52nd pick by the Colorado Rockies. In 2005, he was selected a second team All-American by Baseball America, the American Baseball Coaches Association and the National Collegiate Baseball Writers Association. Carte was named a Second Team All-Region performer in 2004 and a First Team All-Region player in 2005. In 2003, he was a Baseball America Freshman All-American First Team selection and was also named a Collegiate Baseball Freshman All-American and the Big South Rookie of the Year. He played five years in the Rockies organization and one year on an independent league team before coaching at Falmouth in the Cape Cod League and on the collegiate level at Radford and West Virginia. He now serves as an area scouting supervisor for the Chicago Cubs organization. In 2013, he was inducted into the Cape Cod League Hall of Fame after earning Cape Cod League MVP honors in 2004.

Ronda Cline — Ronda Cline (Class of 1984) was named an NAIA First Team All-American in 1983 and 1984 after helping lead the Winthrop softball team to back-to-back NAIA World Series. She was also an NAIA All-District 6 selection in 1983 and 1984 and was named to the District 6 All-Tournament Team both years. Following graduation, Cline joined the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Department where she has served for 30 years and will retire in December. She also remained active in athletics and played professional women's football with the Carolina Queens from 2006 through 2008.

Joel McCartney — Joel McCartney led Winthrop's volleyball program to five Big South Conference championships and five NCAA tournament appearances (2002-2006) during six years as head coach. He compiled a 74-10 Big South Conference coaching record and an overall record of 167-49 in six years. During those six years, he compiled a 16-1 Big South Conference Tournament record for an all-time best league winning percentage of .941. He was a two-time Big South Conference Coach of the Year in 2004 and 2006 and was voted the Big South Conference All-Decade Team Coach (2000-2009). McCartney led the Eagles to three consecutive undefeated Big South regular seasons in 2004, 2005 and 2006 with 14-0 records, a feat that has never been equaled. During his Winthrop years, he produced three Big South Players of the Year, four tournament Most Valuable Players, two Freshmen of the Year, 18 All-Conference selections, 18 All-Tournament Team selections, seven All-Freshmen Team selections, and three All-Decade Team selections. He currently serves as head volleyball coach at the University of Sioux Falls in South Dakota.

Torrell Martin — Torrell Martin (Class of 2007) had an outstanding career as he helped lead the Winthrop men's basketball team to a 52-10 Big South Conference record and a 95-31 overall mark in four years. He was a key member of the Winthrop team that captured the first-ever NCAA Tournament victory in 2007 with a 74-64 win over Notre Dame. Martin played on three-straight Big South Conference Championship teams which received automatic bids to the NCAA Tournament during his sophomore, junior and senior years. He was a two-time Big South Conference First Team selection in 2005 and 2006, earned Second Team honors in 2007, was voted to the 2004 Big South Conference All-Freshman Team, and was voted Big South Conference Tournament Most Valuable Player twice in 2005 and 2006. He was also voted to the Big South Conference All-Decade Team (2000-09). He has played professionally in Europe for the past eight years and was an All-Star selection in Germany in 2010.

Paige Nichols — Paige Nichols (Class of 1985) was a two-time NAIA First Team All-American in 1984 and 1985, and was named to the 1985 NAIA District 6 All-Tournament Team. She played a key role on the 1985 team that reached a NAIA No. 1 national ranking and advanced four games into the NAIA World Series. She still ranks in Winthrop's Top 10 in two batting categories and five pitching categories. She also ranks first in fewest earned runs allowed in a career as well as fewest hits allowed. At the time she finished her career, she ranked first all-time in wins with 42 and currently ranks eighth. She still ranks third in career ERA (1.172). Nichols also finished her career ranked first for lowest ERA in a single-season, wins, strikeouts and games started, and collected 116 hits and 60 RBIs which ranked first all-time at the time her career ended. Her .410 batting average in 1984 is tied for the 4th best average in a single-season, and she is one of only six players in school history to hit .400 or better in a single-season. She has enjoyed a career working for FedEx.

Franco Wakhisi — Franco Wakhisi (Class of 2003) was named a 2002 College Soccer News All-America Honorable Mention. He helped lead the 2002 team to the program's first Big South Conference title and scored the game-winning goal in overtime to defeat 13th-ranked Coastal Carolina in the championship game. Wakhisi was voted an All-Big South First Team selection in 2001 and 2002, and earned NSCAA All-Region honors during those two years. He also was selected to the Big South All-Tournament Team in 2001 and 2002. He led the Big South in scoring with 32 points in 2001 and finished 30th in the nation in scoring. He was second in the Big South in scoring in 2002 and 10th nationally. He is tied for second for most goals in a single-season with 21 and is one of five players all-time to score 20 or more goals in a single-season. He holds the season record for game-winning goals with eight in 2002. He ranked sixth in total points and second all-time in game-winning goals in a career when he graduated.

For ticket information for the Jan. 29 event, contact Karen Trunk at 803/323-2129, ext. 6224.

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