Former Athletes Enshrined

Photos by Laura Luengas
Photos by Laura Luengas

Three individuals and one team were announced to the New Paltz Athletics Hall of Fame Friday, Oct.15 for their contributions to their teams in years past.

The inductees this year included Gina Marotta, Claudine Gruver, Ron Domanski and the 1981-82 Men’s Swimming team, all of whom were inducted to the hall in Student Union 100.

According to the New Paltz Director of Athletics Stuart Robinson, a committee considers potential Hall of Fame candidates in the summer to discuss the nominations they received for consideration. The committee then discusses the merits of each person or team nominated and decides who should be inducted.

Robinson said nominees were chosen based on their accomplishments and overall impact to their respective programs during the time they competed.

Domanski was the first of the inductees to be introduced. Domanski played alongside former Los Angeles Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak in high school, and provided New Paltz with a dominant center for years.  Domanski finished his athletic career as only one of only thirteen New Paltz athletes to have reached 1,000 points or more over the course of a year.

“When they phoned me, I was shocked,” Domanski said. “It’s a great honor, it’s been a number of years since I retired, and this is a great punctuation to my playing career.”

Gruver was announced next and was introduced by 1997 New Paltz Hall of Fame inductee Art Stockin. Gruver, who arrived in New Paltz for the 1998-1999 seasons, was the first female swimmer in school history to gain All-American recognition at the NCAA Division III Swimming and Diving Championships.  She took second in the 200 backstroke and 100 backstroke at the competition, and also set a SUNYAC-record setting time in the 200 backstroke that still stands today.

“I was very excited to be recognized,” said Gruver. “It reminds you about your accomplishments in the past, and it’s nice to be recognized by my former school.”

Marotta, the third inductee of the night, was a softball player who played second base during her college career. Marotta ranks first in runs scored, home runs and triples in New Paltz history and ranks second all time in batting average, hits, doubles, RBIs and slugging percentage.

Marotta said that she was “shocked” when she was told of her induction, and said it was an honor to be chosen.

The final induction of the night was the 1981-82 Men’s Swimming team. Nine players from the team qualified for the 1982 Division III Swimming and Diving Championships, and the team as a whole posted a 10-2 record.

The New Paltz Athletics Hall of Fame can be viewed on the second floor of the Wellness and Recreation Center.