‘Elite Eight’ men’s basketball team and six individuals set to join Hall of Fame

‘Elite Eight’ men’s basketball team and six individuals set to join Hall of Fame

PALATINE HILL -- The Lewis & Clark Hall of Fame Committee announced Thursday that it has put forth six new inductees to the Lewis & Clark Hall of Fame. Five individuals and one team will be inducted on Oct. 28 as part of Homecoming and Family Weekend.

The 2016 class includes the 2001-02 men's basketball team, the only to make an NCAA sectionals final, or "Elite Eight." Two track and field student-athletes, Kevin Cooley and Kate Ross, will be inducted as well as Mary Kay Plass of softball and volleyball and Jake Smith of football and baseball. Jack Folliard will receive a Lifetime Achievement induction.

Lewis & Clark's 2001-02 men's basketball team was led by two-time Northwest Conference Player of the Year Scott Davis that season and featured two other All-NWC selections, John Mietus and Colin Oriard. The Pios went 24-6 overall to win the conference for the second time in three seasons. In the NCAA tournament, Lewis & Clark defeated Claremont Mudd-Scripps, Mississippi College and Wisconsin-Oshkosh before losing in the regional final to Carthage, 85-70.

Kevin Cooley is Lewis & Clark's all-time fastest in the 5,000 and 10,000 meters, winning both events at the conference championship in 1977. Cooley's times of 14:34.2 in the 5,000 and 30:35.39 in the 10,000 are still atop the Pioneers' record book. He is also in the top 30 all-time in the 1,500 meters. Lewis & Clark won the conference championship in 1977 and the team was inducted into the Lewis & Clark Hall of Fame in 1994.

Kate Ross finished her time at Lewis & Clark as an All-American after advancing to nationals and finishing second in the long jump. She still holds the Northwest Conference championship meet long jump record and finished as the long jump and triple jump champion at the 2006 NWC Championships, where she was the meet's outstanding athlete. Ross holds the Lewis & Clark record in both events and is second all-time in the 400-meter hurdles after holding the record from 2005-14, when Emily Thompson broke it. Ross was also a member of the Pios' fourth-best 4x400 relay team.

Mary Kay Plass both competed and coached for the Pioneers. She was selected All-Conference First-Team and NAIA District III First-Team in 1983, repeating the latter in 1984. Plass, who also competed in volleyball all four years, led softball in hitting and at-bats in 1983 and at-bats, runs scored and sacrifices in 1984. Later, Plass coached the Pios for three seasons and finished with a 29-38 record.

Jake Smith was a member of the football and baseball teams, earning baseball All-Conference First-Team, All-District II and All-Area West Coast Team selections in 1993. The Pioneers won the conference and area championships in 1990, making the NAIA World Series. The team was inducted into the Lewis & Clark Hall of Fame in 2002. Over his four seasons on the diamond, the team finished with a record of 81-62 with 28 wins in 1992. Smith also competed with Lewis & Clark's championship football team in 1989 and the runner-up squads in 1990 and 1992.

Jack Folliard graduated from Lewis & Clark in 1969 before earning a law degree from the Lewis & Clark Law School in 1974. During his time at Lewis & Clark, Folliard began officiating basketball and, later, football, eventually reaching the heights of the Pacific-10, now Pac-12, Conference in 1982. Starting in 2002, Folliard became a referee for the conference, a position he held until retiring after the 2014 season and concluding a 33-year career in the field. He is now a supervisor of officials for the Pac-12.

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For more information, including registration for Homecoming and Family Weekend, visit: http://college.lclark.edu/live/events/130316-homecoming-and-family-weekend