The SUNY Geneseo department of Intercollegiate Athletics and Recreation inducted five new members into its Sports Hall of Fame on Saturday, September 25, 2010 in the MacVittie College Union Ballroom as part of the college's Homecoming festivities.
The 2010 class included women's swimmer Michelle Standora Wolinski '00, women's swimmer Danielle Schoen '00, distinguished patron James N. Leary '75, men's lacrosse player David Spennacchio '04 and women's soccer star Logan Hadzicki Blask ‘04.
Wolinski led the women's swimming and diving team to the SUNYAC title in each of her four seasons. She is an 11-time SUNYAC event champion and 10-time event runner-up in butterfly, sprint freestyle and relay events. At the time of her graduation, she held one individual and five relay school records and held three SUNYAC records. Following her stellar senior season in which she was named Swimmer of the Meet at the conference championships, she was named the Grace Mowatt Award for career achievement in SUNYAC swimming. A 3.40 grade point average in biology with her swimming accomplishments led to her winning the 2000 Myrtle Merritt Scholar-Athlete award. She received her master's in biological sciences from Purdue University in 2002 and has moved her athletic prowess to the roads, where she competes in a variety of 5 and 10k races. Now living in Townsend, Delaware with her husband Matthew, she is a middle school science teacher and head cross country coach at St. Anne's Episcopal School in Middletown, Delaware.
Schoen is a 16-time SUNYAC individual and relay champion in women's swimming, accomplishing the feat in just three seasons as she missed the conference championships due to illness her first year. Geneseo won the SUNYAC title in each of her four seasons and she held six school records at the time of her graduation. In 2001, she earned Honorable Mention All-America in the 50-yard freestyle, won the Louise Kuhl Award as the most outstanding senior female athlete at Geneseo and received the highest honor a SUNY student can retain, the Chancellor's Award for Student Excellence. She graduated with her bachelor's degree in biology and went on to obtain her Doctor of Veterinary Medicine from Ross University School in 2005. The 400 freestyle relay, the final event in her last SUNYAC meet was the defining moment of her Geneseo athletic career. In the words of her coach and Hall of Fame nominator, Paul Dotterweich, "In my first season here at Geneseo, I came to a program that had won 11 straight SUNYAC team championships. At the SUNYAC meet that year, it came down to the final event, Geneseo vs. Oswego, winner takes all. Schoen entered the pool 2.7 seconds behind the Oswego's final leg swimmer and watching that relay, my stomach sank. First year, I blew it. Obviously, I had no idea how much of a competitor she was, she hit the water and never looked back. At the 50 she had cut the lead to 1.3 seconds and in the second 50, she was 1.9 seconds faster, giving Geneseo the title by .6 seconds. Her split time was 51.78 seconds, nearly two seconds faster than any other 100-yard freestyle in the SUNYAC that year." She lives in Brooklyn and is currently an emergency veterinarian at Veterinary Emergency and Referral Group.
Leary first wore the Blue Knight jersey in 1971-72 as a member of Paul Evans' 17-4 freshman basketball team and followed up with a season on Tom Pope's varsity squad in 1972-73. A knee injury cut short his athletic career, yet he stayed involved in Geneseo athletics working in the training room for two years. Following his graduation from Geneseo with a B.A. degree in political science in 1975, he taught and coached at All Saints High School in Buffalo and at Seaford High School in Seaford, Delaware. He went on to earn his masters in personnel management from Lynchburg College in 1980, fully intending to enter the business world. However, a dream coaching opportunity arose in 1980 when Evans became head coach at the United States Naval Academy and offered him a position on his staff, where the Geneseo alumnus spent two seasons and helped lay the groundwork for the David Robinson-led Navy teams that made three straight NCAA tournaments, including a final eight appearance in 1986.
After the 1981-82 season at Navy, he began his current career as a law firm administrator, staying active in athletics by helping to coach basketball at Gonzaga College High School in Washington, D.C., as well as a number of years with his daughter Lindsay's team. Remaining active in high school athletics, he has served as the Commissioner of the Washington Catholic Athletic Conference for the last four years.
In March 2008, he established the James N. Leary Endowed Fund for Leadership in Athletics at SUNY Geneseo, which will benefit Blue Knight student-athletes for years to come. Funded by the Leary endowment, the Department of Intercollegiate Athletics held its first career networking dinner and panel discussion with alumni for junior and senior women student-athletes in 2009 and he moderated the men's version in 2010. He is the vice chair of the Geneseo Foundation Board of Directors and is a member of the Roundtable Athletic Association. He currently resides in Annapolis, Maryland and is the Executive Director for Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, LLP in Washington, D.C.
Spennacchio was a four-year attackman for the men's lacrosse team. According to his coach and Hall of Fame nominator, Jim Lyons, he is regarded as the single most influential player in the resurgence of the Geneseo's men's lacrosse program. He was a three-time All-SUNYAC player, stands second in career points with 217, fourth in career goals with 94 and is the all-time assist leader in 43 years of Geneseo lacrosse with 123, a record set by Geneseo Sports Hall of Famer David Lyons that had stood for 33 years. He led Geneseo to a record of 37-21 over four years, going 33-12 in the last three years, starting all 58 games of his four seasons. Following his senior year in which he scored 67 points on 29 goals and a then-record 38 assists, he earned SUNYAC Player of the Year, Honorable Mention All-America and the Ira S. Wilson Award as the top male senior athlete at Geneseo. The 2004 graduate earned his bachelor's degree in mathematics and computer science. He currently resides in Jupiter, Florida with his wife Regina and works as a Project Manager for CSA International in Stuart, Florida.
Blask was a four-year starter at striker for the women's soccer team, leading the Blue Knights to a record of 49-23-12 over four seasons with three trips to the SUNYAC championship game. She is a four-time All-SUNYAC selection, earning SUNYAC Rookie of the Year in 2000 and being selected as the SUNYAC Player of the Year in both 2002 and 2003. She was a three-time choice as second team All-Northeast Region and was the 2004 Louise Kuhl Award winner as the outstanding senior female athlete at Geneseo. In a storied women's soccer program that has won 64% of their games and has four SUNYAC titles in 29 years, she is the career leader in goals with 45, sixth in career assists with 23 and first in career points with 113. She earned her bachelor's degree in elementary and special education in 2004 and holds a master's degree in Literacy. She is a special education teacher at Weedsport Elementary and coaches cross country, basketball and track and field. She lives in Warners, a suburb of Syracuse, with her husband Brian.
The ceremony also included recognition of the 2004 SUNYAC champion and NCAA participating men's lacrosse team.