Northeastern athletics: Five inducted to HOF

Northeastern athletics: Five inducted to HOF

Jim O’Shaughnessy (right), president of the NU Varsity Club, congratulates James Carisella on induction into the Northeastern University Hall of Fame. Carisella and four other former Husky athletes were honored in a ceremony at Matthews Arena Monday night. Carisella, a 1973 graduate, was a standout on the track & field team.
By: Patrick McHugh, News Staff

Five former Husky greats were enshrined into the Northeastern University Hall of Fame Class of 2010 Monday night at Matthews Arena.

James Carisella, men’s track & field class of 1973; Mari Creatini, field hockey class of 2007; Jay Heinbuck, men’s hockey class of 1988; Mark Hopkins, baseball and football class of 1996; and Jacquelyne Sedgwick, women’s track & field class of 1999, were honored as the latest class of Northeastern athletes to enter the hall.

Every year since 1974, with the exception of 1998, the university has recognized a select group of individuals for their accolades and contributions to the athletic department. Including this year’s crop of inductees, the hall now includes 223 members.

Athletics Director Peter Roby serves on the board that elects the hall of fame members. He said the selection criteria comes down to the individual’s legacy within the Northeastern community.

“It’s a combination of things, but it’s certainly about how they distinguished themselves in their careers, if they set records, if they were in the record books and to what extent the team had success,” Roby said.

Carisella won four Greater Boston collegiate titles throughout his career and was named Northeastern’s Track Man of the year in 1972. He was the first NU pole vaulter to reach 16-feet indoors and outdoors and ranks in the top five in school history in each category.

Creatini led the Huskies to four straight America East championships and four NCAA Tournament appearances. Named an All-American in her junior and senior seasons, she led the nation in scoring her junior season by tallying 29 goals and 72 points. Her 67 career goals and 162 points are both school records.

Heinbuck won Beanpot titles in 1984 and 1985. As a senior he racked up 30 goals and 40 assists for a total of 70 points, which stands as the most prolific scoring season for any NU player ever. As a director of amateur scouting for the NHL’s Pittsburgh Penguins, Heinbuck got his name etched onto the Stanley Cup when the Penguins won the cup last year.

On the gridiron, Hopkins snatched 16 career interceptions, fourth-most in school history, and in 1994 he led the Yankee Conference with seven. On the baseball diamond, he finished his career with a batting average of .333, sixth-best in school history. He also totaled 54 steals in his career, third in school history, and his 27 steals in 1994 is a school single-season record.

Sedgwick won eight America East titles and five New England titles throwing the shot put. She also owns the second-longest shot put throws in Huskies history in both the indoor and outdoor event.

Roby said this year’s class of inductees ranks as one of the top classes to ever don an NU uniform.

“All of our honorees have distinguished themselves and made a mark at Northeastern,” Roby said. “They’ve brought a lot of pride and attention to the university as a result of what they did while they were here and what they’ve done after they left.”

Hopkins said it was exciting to be inducted to the hall of fame.

“I was actually driving in to work and [Associate Athletics Director of Communications] Jack Grinold called me and informed me of the news, and I was pumped,” Hopkins said. “It’s very important for me and I was very happy to be elected.”

Hopkins, who now works as a personal trainer and fitness professional in New Jersey, said being the first member of the football team to go into the hall since the program was cut last November makes the honor significant.

“I feel like I’m going in for a lot of people who played over the years, so I think it’s special based off that fact alone,” Hopkins said.

After the hall of fame ceremony, this year’s senior athletes were also acknowledged for their careers at Northeastern with a gift.
Two seniors, Katy Applin of the women’s hockey team and Matt Janning of the men’s basketball team, took home some hardware. Applin won the 2010 Jeanne Rowlands Award while Janning was the recipient of the 2010 Herbert Gallagher Award. The awards, named after two NU hall of famers, recognize the top two senior scholar-athletes for their work in their sport and in the classroom.

Roby said this year’s senior class deserved to be recognized on the same night as the hall of famers.

“This class represents everything a student-athlete is supposed to be,” Roby said. “This group competed hard and won conference championships and earned all-conference honors, all while maintaining their academic integrity in the classroom, and that’s really what it’s all about.”

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