Baseball Players Among Six Selected for Blugold Hall of Fame
By: Tim Petermann, Athletics Consultant
EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (UWECBlugolds.com) - Two baseball players, both of whom were multiple-year All-Conference selections, are among six athletes selected for induction into the UW-Eau Claire Blugold Hall of Fame next month.
The honored group also includes a national champion, two first team All-Americans and a five-time conference champion.
The 2010 class, which will be inducted September 12, includes baseball players Ron Parks and Vic Cable; hockey player Mike Schwengler; softball player Jill (Schoenike) Martin; track athlete John Mago and tennis player Kady (Hickman) Monson.
This group represents the 34th class of men's inductees and the 21st class of women's inductees and brings the number of athletes, coaches and administrators who have been honored to 180.
The Blugold Hall of Fame was established in 1973 to pay tribute, give deserved recognition and enhance school tradition by honoring former athletic letterwinners, coaches or administrators who showed distinctive, unique or exceptional ability while on the campus at Eau Claire and have distinguished themselves in their profession or personally since leaving the institution.
For women athletes, there must be a lapse of 11 years from their final season of eligibility before they can be considered for induction and for men 15 years.
The class will be recognized at halftime of the football game vs. St. John's University Saturday, September 11 and inducted during a banquet at the Best Western Trail Lodge Hotel & Suites, 3340 Mondovi Road, Sunday. A social hour will begin at 11 a.m. with the dinner at noon and the program at 1 p.m. Tickets for the banquet, which will also include presentation of the 2009-10 Blugold Super Six Salute award winners and several other recognitions, are $25 and can be obtained by contacting the UW-Eau Claire Alumni Association at (715) 836-3266 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Former WEAU TV 13 sports director Rick Foy will present the 2010 Hall of Fame inductees.
While 17 other Blugold Hall of Famers included baseball among their multi-sport participation, Parks and Cable, both pitchers, are the first two dedicated baseball athletes to be inducted for a sport that was dropped by the university after the 1995 season.
Martin is the only NFCA first-team All-American in school softball history while Schwengler is one of four hockey players to earn AHCA first team All-American recognition, the others being Alex Hicks, Greg Robertson and Matt Loen. Mago won an NAIA national championship in the shot put in 1986. Monson is one of only three Blugold women's tennis players to have won the conference No. 1 singles title more than once.
Cable, Parks and Schwengler are all educators in the Chippewa Valley area. Mago is a business professor in the Twin Cities. Martin is an attorney in the Milwaukee area. Monson is currently a teaching professional and mother of five in Rochester, Minnesota.
Cable, who prepped at Cedarburg High School, was a two-time All-Conference performer for coach Dan Langlois. During a three-year Blugold career, he fashioned a 17-9 record. His best season came his senior year when he was 7-2 with a 2.47 earned run average. He struck out 57 with 23 walks in 73 innings of work as the Blugolds won the Northern Division of the WSUC and fashioned a 25-14 overall record. That year he was named the team MVP. He still ranks among the Blugold leaders in wins for a season, games started in a season, complete games in a season, strikeouts in a season and innings pitched in a season.
Cable graduated in December, 1987 with a degree in broadfield social studies. He spent two years as a classroom teacher at the Eau Claire Academy and has taught at Chippewa Falls Senior High since January, 1991. The past 16 ½ years, he has taught psychology and U.S. history. He has been nominated for Disney's American Teacher Award and was honored with an Outstanding Teacher Award from the University of Chicago. Nine times, he has been selected by graduating seniors at Chi-Hi as their most influential teacher. He has served and is still serving as a building steward for the Chippewa Falls Teachers Union.
Since graduating, Cable has also continued his career in baseball as both a player and coach. He played 15 years with the Eau Claire Cavaliers (1985-1999) and four times earned the team's leading pitcher award. He posted an overall record of 168-39 and helped the Cavs win four CABA championships while twice earning Most Valuable Pitcher honors in that tournament and once the MVP award. He served as team captain and also won the Cavaliers' Sam Krueger Award and the Key Player Award in addition to being named to the All-Time Favorite Team in 1995. On July 16, 1988, he threw a perfect game against the Green Bay Blue Ribbons.
Most recently, Cable has been an assistant coach and pitching coach with the highly-successful Eau Claire Express of the Northwoods League. He co-coached the Chi-Hi varsity from 1992-2001 when the team fashioned a 144-64 overall record. In 1998, the Cardinals won the Big Rivers Conference, qualified for the state tournament and finished with a 22-2 record. They also made a state tournament appearance in 1996.
He and his wife Pamela, a teacher's aide, have two daughters-Katie, 16 and Emma, 13.
Ron Parks, who prepped at Rib Lake High School, was a three-time All-WSUC pick, making the honor team in 1992, 1993 and 1994. He helped lead coach Craig Walters' Blugolds to divisional titles in 1992 and 1994. Those two teams were the winningest in school history, posting a 28-17 mark in 1992 and a 28-11 record in 1994 when the team advanced to the NCAA Division III regional.
His career record was 21-14 with five shutouts, all of which came during his junior year when he posted a 7-4 record and had 59 strikeouts and only 15 walks in 72 1/3 innings of work.
Parks shares the school single season wins record with Cable at seven. He also holds the single season records for games started, complete games, innings pitched and shutouts. He also owns the career record for victories. Parks received the team most valuable pitcher award twice.
Parks earned his bachelor's degree in math education in 1996 and then obtained his master's degree from Winona State in 2003. He taught math and coached baseball and golf at Durand High School from 1996-98. He has been in the Eau Claire school district since 1998, currently teaching math at North High School, and has been an honored educator three times.
Besides his coaching at Durand, Parks was an assistant cross country coach at Rib Lake in 1995 when the boys placed fourth at state and the girls eighth. He also was a freshman baseball coach at North for one season and assistant varsity coach two years. He is currently in his second season as an Eau Claire Express assistant.
Parks played 14 years of summer baseball, making over 200 starts, with the Eau Claire Cavaliers, Antigo Cardinals, Eau Claire Bears, Beef River Bullfrogs, Rib Lake, Interwald, Whittlesey and Abbotsford. He was a member of Abbotsford's 1993 WBA state championship team.
Parks has also had success in curling, earning a gold medal at the 2010 Badger State Games and also participating in the 1996 and 2008 U.S. Olympic qualifying round.
Parks and his wife Michelle, the mathematics and science consultant for CESA 10 in Chippewa Falls, are parents of three children: twins Riley and Morgan, 8; and Reggie, 2.
John Mago, a state high school shot put champion and an All-Northwest football player at Altoona, won the shot put championship for the Blugolds at the 1986 NAIA indoor national championships in Kansas City.
He was a 12-time conference place winner in the indoor shot, outdoor shot, discus and hammer throw. As a collegiate weightman, his career coincided with that of Tom Newberry who claimed 10 titles in those events and went on to a stellar career with the NFL's Los Angeles Rams. Mago was the conference shot put runner-up five times.
Although since broken, when he left UWEC, Mago held the school indoor and outdoor shot put records. He was the team field event MVP in 1984 and 1986. Besides winning the shot put title in 1986, Mago also claimed a seventh place in the 35-pound weight throw at the NAIA meet that year.
Mago earned a business finance degree from UWEC in 1987. He has advanced degrees from Saint Mary's University of Minnesota (Ed.D), Cardinal Stritch University (MS) and the Minnesota School of Business (MBA).
Since 2004 Mago has been department chair of undergraduate business programs for the University of Phoenix and since 2006 he has been a business professor at Anoka Ramsey Community College.
From 2000-2006, Mago held positions as Director of Career Services and Dean of Faculty at the Minnesota School of Business.
Mago began his career as a national project/sales manager for Strom Engineering from 1993-98 and then became vice-president of marketing at Award Staffing Services.
Between 1999 and 2009, Mago held adjunct faculty positions with National American University, Art Institute online of Pittsburgh, Indiana Business College, Saint Mary's University and the University of Phoenix.
Mago has been a member of the Minnesota Business Educators, Inc. since 2002 and the Twin Cities Human Resources Association since 1999. He has served as an advisor for a number of groups and a volunteer with several service organizations. He was named Faculty of the Year in 2007 for the University of Phoenix.
From 1993-97, he served as the men's and women's throws coach at Hamline University where he had two national champions. He spent eight years as a track and field meet official.
Mago and his wife Susan, a regional director for Globe University, have four sons: Lucas, 19; Patrick, 17; Dalton, 16; and Jonah, 8.
Kady (Hickman) Monson
Kady Monson (nee Hickman) was the conference No. 1 singles and No. 1 doubles champion in both her sophomore and junior seasons. She was a member of four consecutive conference championship teams for coach Marilyn Skrivseth.
As a senior, she won the conference No. 2 singles crown and was also the No. 2 doubles runner-up as well as being selected the conference Scholar-Athlete for her sport. That year, she played with air cast splints on both legs due to periostitis in her shins.
For her career, the former Shoreview, Minnesota prep star produced a 59-16 singles record with all but seven matches in the No. 1 spot. She was 53-11 in doubles play, again with all but seven matches in the top position.
Alison Hover and Molly Cope were the only other Blugolds to win a conference No. 1 singles title more than once.
Monson was a two-time Blugold Super Six winner and also recipient of a UW-Eau Claire Outstanding Senior Award in 1997.
Monson graduated magna cum laude with a degree in math education and a coaching minor. She taught at Hudson High School in 1998-99, Stillwater, Minnesota High School in 1999-01, Eau Claire Memorial in 2002-03 and Eau Claire North in 2002-04. She has been in the Rochester Area School District since 2007 as a homebound mathematics teacher.
She has been a tennis teaching professional since 2001 and operated tennis camps in Eau Claire and other cities. She has coached JV and varsity boys and girls tennis at a number of high schools in Minnesota and Wisconsin and has served as a tennis clinic instructor at many camps. Currently she works as a Visiting Tennis Professional for the USTA Northern Section and as a National USTA Recreational Coach Trainer and Quickstart Trainer.
A mostly stay at home mom now, she and her husband Karl, a tennis pro at the Rochester Athletic Club, have five children: Faith, 6 ½; Asher, 5; Noah, 3 ½; and twins Bethany and Grace, 1 ½. She is also actively involved in her church.
Jill (Schoenike) Martin
When Jill Martin (nee Schoenike) left the softball program at UW-Eau Claire after the 1999 season, she held virtually every single season and career offensive record.
The four-year All-Conference performer still ranks first in career RBI (156) and career doubles (51) and is second in batting average (.411) and third in home runs (21).
An outstanding first baseman, Martin still ranks third in NCAA Division III career stats for putouts.
The former McFarland prep standout is the only Blugold ever named to the NFCA All-American first team which came her senior season after being named to the third team as a sophomore. She was the WIAC West Division Player of the Year twice and an NFCA All-Region first team selection three times. She was the WIAC Scholar-Athlete for her sport as a senior in 1999 and also was a Blugold Super Six winner that year.
Martin played on the first Blugold softball team to advance to the NCAA tournament in 1997 and also the first to advance through the regional to the national tournament in 1999. She was named to the regional All-Tournament team twice and the national All-Tournament team as a senior.
She played on the two winningest teams in school history in 1998 and 1999 when the team garnered 40 victories. She played on two conference championship teams at a time when the league champion was determined by the post-season tournament after divisional play during the season for seeding purposes.
Martin graduated with a business degree in accounting in 1999. She received her law degree in 2004 from the University of Nebraska College of Law.
She was a legislative auditor with the Legislative Audit Bureau from 1999 through 2001 and a law clerk in the University of Nebraska Foundation from 2002-04. She became an associate attorney in the Schroeder Group, s.c., Attorneys at Law in 2004 and a trust administrator and attorney with Marshall & Ilsley Trust Company, N.A. in 2006, a position she still holds.
She remained involved in softball by playing and volunteering in the Badger State Games. She was a site coordinator for youth softball and also a Commissioner for Youth Fastpitch. She also has gotten involved in golf and is a Board Member of the Milwaukee Chapter of the Executive Women's Golf Association.
Professionally, she is a member of the State Bar of Wisconsin, the Milwaukee Bar Association and the American Bar Association. She currently serves as co-chair of the Association of Women Lawyers Estate Planning Discussion Group and is an active member of the Waukesha County Estate Planning Council. Recently, she served as a volunteer attorney for the Wills for Heroes Program with the Wisconsin Bar Association.
Her husband Shane Martin is a Call Center Manager for Waste Management in Germantown.
Mike Schwengler is the third leading career scorer in the 33-year history of UW-Eau Claire men's ice hockey. He scored 163 points in 105 games to rank behind Hall of Famers Alex Hicks and Mark Hicks. His senior season of 1993-94, he earned first team All-American honors when he averaged almost two points a game, totaling 52 points in 27 games including 27 goals. Thirty of his 65 career goals came on the power play.
A native of Medicine Hat, Alberta, Schwengler was a two-time team MVP for coach Ian Perrin's Blugolds. He also received the top freshman award in 1990-91.
Following his Blugold playing career, he served as Perrin's assistant. He has been the Eau Claire Memorial head hockey coach since 1997, compiling an official record of 204-93-8. During his 13-year prep coaching career, he won a state championship in 2007-08 with an undefeated 26-0 record and had two other teams reached the state semi-finals. His Old Abe teams have claimed six Big Rivers Conference championships and six sectional championships which advanced them to the state tournament. He received sectional coach of the year honors six times and state coach of the year honors once.
Since 2008, he has served on the Eau Claire Youth Hockey Board.
Schwengler's degree is comprehensive physical education with an adaptive PE emphasis. He teaches physical education and adaptive PE for the school district.
Schwengler and his wife Barb, a nurse at Luther Hospital, are the parents of three children: Bret, 13; Dawson, 11; and Madison, 7.