May 31, 2011

Salve Regina announces its Athletic Hall of Fame Class of 2011

NEWPORT, R.I. - The Salve Regina University athletics department will induct five individuals into its Athletic Hall of Fame during ceremonies on October 1 as part of its homecoming weekend. The fifth hall of fame class will be recognized throughout the day during the university's Fall Festival Weekend with six different sports teams hosting events in addition to the 12th annual Mansion Run. The induction ceremony takes place at Ochre Court on the Newport campus.

The five individuals being inducted include sailing advisor Sister Esther Whalen (Newport, R.I.), baseball player Eric Cirella (Jamestown, R.I.), track & field athlete Karen Luchun McElroy (Scotland, Conn.), soccer and basketball player Paul Murawski (Edison, N.J.), and tennis player Nancylee Paris Settle (New Vernon, N.J.).

The Athletic Hall of Fame committee (comprised of athletics, faculty, student life, and alumni representatives) reviewed the nominations submitted by various members of the Salve Regina community, and chose this year’s class to bring the total membership in the Seahawk Athletic Hall of Fame to 20 outstanding athletes/administrators. Check out the previous Hall of Fame classes at the Salve Regina Web site: http://www.salveathletics.com/traditions/halloffame/index

The annual Hall of Fame Induction Dinner and Ceremony will take place on Saturday, October 1, 2011 at 5:30 p.m. at Ochre Court. For more information on the induction ceremony please contact 800-821-2343.

INDUCTEE BIOGRAPHIES

Sister Esther A. Whalen, RSCJ
Sister Esther arrived at the Newport campus over 30 years ago and helped launch the school's sailing program. A recent inductee in the Intercollegiate Sailing Association Hall of Fame, she also received the sailing association's 2007-08 Outstanding Volunteer Service Award at another celebration in her honor at New York Yacht Club's Harbor Court. Also in 2008, members of her family announced the establishment of a $100,000 Sister Esther Whalen Sailing Endowment at Salve Regina. The Seahawk sailing program has risen to national rankings in the last couple of years.

Eric M. Cirella '05
Eric Cirella became the first Seahawk to earn three Academic All-America© honors, doing so at three different positions for the Salve Regina baseball program. While leading his teammates to the 2005 conference championship and the program's second appearance in the NCAA Division III Regional Championships, Cirella also became a two-time All-America and earned college baseball's highest honor - ESPN The Magazine Academic All-America© of the Year. He led the nation in batting (.504) during his senior season and established .447 as the individual career-best batting average at Salve Regina.

Karen Luchun McElroy '92
Karen Luchun threw the javelin further than any other Salve Regina athlete. Her prowess in the event took her all the way to the NCAA Division III National Championships - twice. A four-time New England regional qualifier, she finished in the top three on two occasions. Recognized by the athletic department in successive years with the Brother Michael Reynolds Award (1990), Athlete of the Year Award (1991), and Sportsmanship Award (1992). After graduation, Luchun served as an assistant coach of the school's cross country and track and field programs which featured fellow hall of famers Tracy Carter and Michelle Fobert.

Paul J. Murawski '80
A one-time teammate of fellow hall of famer Bernard Redfield, Paul Murawski helped establish legitimacy to the school's athletic program as a two-sport athlete. As one of the founding members of the varsity soccer program, he served as captain in that sport as well as basketball. He started every game on the hardwood during his four years (1976-80). Selected as the school's athlete of the year as a freshman, Murawski led the basketball team his senior season with 17.4 points per game.

Nancylee Paris Settle '91
Nancylee Paris still holds the school's best winning percentage for singles by a women's tennis player (59-8; .881). Her total wins rank second all-time, just one behind former teammate Christine Linski. During her four-year career Paris led the team to winning records each year and helped the program begin a six-year streak as league champions when the Commonwealth Coast Conference added tennis in 1989. She advanced further than any previous Salve Regina player at the New England Women's Invitational Tennis Tournament. She also competed in the Rolex ITA Championships and graduated in 1991 with the most doubles victories in school history (32-18; .640).