Date: March 21, 2007
W&L ANNOUNCES 2007 ATHLETIC HALL OF FAME CLASS
LEXINGTON, Va. -- Washington and Lee University has announced the 20th class to be inducted into its Athletic Hall of Fame. The class includes Bob Thomas '53, Bill Boyle '57, Jay Fox '57, Scott Fechnay '69, Charlie Brown '78, Bobby Matthews '89, Claire Dudley Wilkiemeyer '93 and Josephine Schaeffer Covington '96. All eight will be recognized at the Athletic Hall of Fame dinner on Fri., Sept. 7 and at the Generals' football game against Franklin & Marshall on Sat., Sept. 8. However, Thomas, Boyle and Fox will be officially inducted among their peers at the University’s Five-Star General Dinner on Fri., Oct. 5.
Bob Thomas '53 was a four-year letterwinner for the football team, serving as a team captain during his senior season. A tight end, he caught 65 passes for 1,219 yards and 12 touchdowns during his career. Thomas is still tied for fourth all-time at W&L in career receiving touchdowns and he continues to rank among the Top 15 all-time in receiving yards. As a senior, Thomas snared 29 passes for 506 yards and six touchdowns en route to garnering Honorable Mention All-America honors. As a junior, Thomas helped lead the Generals to the 1951 Gator Bowl by totaling 30 receptions for 586 yards and six touchdowns. His 586 receiving yards that season still rank 10th all-time at W&L for a season, while his six touchdowns catches in 1950 and 1951 are both tied for the fifth-most in a season in school history.
Bill Boyle '57 was a four-year letterwinner for both the soccer and tennis teams. On the soccer pitch, Boyle was named team MVP of the freshman team in 1953 and he helped the varsity team to a 5-3-2 record in 1954 by leading the team in scoring with 10 goals, including all three goals in a 3-1 win over Virginia. As a senior in 1956, Boyle became the first soccer player at W&L to earn All-America honors after leading the Generals to a school-record eight wins (8-4). He remained W&L's only soccer All-American until 1996. In tennis, Boyle advanced to the quarterfinals of the Southern Conference Tournament as a sophomore in helping the Generals to a fourth-place finish. He played on the No. 1 doubles team as a junior and helped W&L to a third-place finish at the conference championship.
Jay Fox '57 was a four-year letterwinner for the swimming team, serving as a team captain during his senior campaign. The W&L outstanding athlete during the 1956-57 school year, Fox graduated as the school record holder in every butterfly and breastroke event in which he participated. He won the 1955 Southern Conference Championship in the 200 butterfly and claimed the Southern Conference crown in the 100 and 200 butterfly events in 1957. Fox was also part of the 400 medley relay team that won the Southern Conference title in 1955 and he competed on the 400 freestyle relay team that won the Southern Conference Championship and set a conference record during that season.
Scott Fechnay ’69 was a four-year letterwinner for the soccer team, serving as a team captain during his senior season. Fechnay earned First Team All-State honors in each of his final three seasons and he was an All-South selection as a sophomore. During his career, he helped lead the soccer team to a 27-14-4 overall record and a Virginia Intercollegiate Soccer Association title in 1967. Fechnay is still tied for first all-time at W&L for goals in a game (5), points in a game (10) and consecutive games with a goal (6). He also currently ranks third for goals in a season (17), career goals (40), points in a season (36) and career points (86).
Charlie Brown ’78 was a four-year letterwinner in lacrosse and a two-year letterwinner in football, serving as a lacrosse captain his senior season. In football, Brown was a two-year starter at cornerback, totaling 153 tackles and four interceptions. As a lacrosse goalie, he earned Second Team All-America honors as a sophomore and senior, and Third Team All-America accolades as a junior. The Team MVP as a senior, Brown still holds the W&L record for career saves (735) and ranks third all-time in save percentage (.639). He also helped lead the lacrosse program to a 40-21 overall record and four NCAA Tournament berths during his career.
Bobby Matthews ’89 was a four-year letterwinner for the men's tennis team, serving as a team captain during his senior season. A four-time All-ODAC honoree, Matthews earned the ODAC Player of the Year award in 1988 when he helped lead the Generals to the Division III National Championship. An All-American in both singles and doubles each of his final three seasons, Matthews teamed with John Morris '90 to win the 1989 NCAA Division III Doubles Championship and he received the Memorial Tennis Cup as the team's top player as a freshman and sophomore. Matthews and David McLeod '88 still hold the W&L record for career doubles wins as a team (59) and Matthews also ranks second all-time with 96 career singles victories.
Claire Dudley Wilkiemeyer ’93 was a four-year letterwinner for the women's swimming team, serving as a team captain during her senior season. A First Team All-ODAC performer all four years, she was the first women's swimmer at W&L to qualify for the NCAA National Championships each of her four years. Dudley Wilkiemeyer was named the ODAC Swimmer of the Year as a freshman, the Atlantic States Swimmer of the Year as a junior and the W&L Outstanding Swimmer each of her first three seasons. She graduated as the school record-holder in six events and earned Honorable Mention All-America honors in the 100 breastroke as a freshman and 200 breastroke as a senior. Dudley Wilkiemeyer was named the 1993 W&L Senior Female Athlete of the Year.
Josephine Schaeffer Covington ‘96 was a four-year letterwinner for both the cross country and track and field teams, serving as a captain for each squad as a senior. She was named the W&L Outstanding Freshman Female Athlete in 1993 and the W&L Outstanding Senior Female Athlete in 1996. In cross country, she won 29 of 36 career races and qualified for the NCAA National Championships all four years. A four-time All-South Region honoree and a three-time All-American, Schaeffer Covington set the W&L record by running a 16:46 in winning the 1993 NCAA South/Southeast Regional. In track and field, she was a four-time All-ODAC performer and she qualified for the NCAA National Championships three times in outdoor track and once in indoor track. She earned All-America honors in 1993 with a second-place finish in the outdoor 10,000-meter run and she currently remains the W&L record-holder for the mile (5:26.70), 3,000-meters (10:18.20), 5,000-meters (17:31.31) and 10,000-meters (36:31.82). Schaeffer Covington capped her career by being awarded an NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship in 1996.
The Washington and Lee University Athletic Hall of Fame was established in 1987 by the W&L Alumni Association. The Hall of Fame was designed to honor and memorialize those individuals who have made outstanding contributions to Washington and Lee athletics and have helped bring recognition, honor, excellence and distinction to the University and its intercollegiate athletic program.
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