Super Seven Headed To UNLV Hall
April 7, 2006
LAS VEGAS - Five former Rebel standout players, one distinguished contributor and a record-breaking team have been voted into the UNLV Athletic Hall of Fame, the school announced.
The Class of 2006 is made up of former teammates Chris Riley and Chad Campbell (golf), Cyndi Parus (softball), Roger Pettersson (tennis), Trevaia Williams (track & field), the 1989-90 Lady Rebel basketball team and distinguished contributor Mel Wolzinger.
The diverse group will be inducted at ceremonies on October 13 at the South Coast Hotel. Tickets ($110 per person) can be reserved now by calling Kara Jefferies at (702) 895-3678. Tables of 10 and sponsorship opportunities are also available. Ceremonies begin with cocktails at 6 p.m., followed by dinner at 7 p.m. and program to follow.
Born in 1987, UNLV's Athletic Hall of Fame will now grow to 85 members strong. Under the hall's bylaws, former student-athletes must have completed their eligibility at least 10 years earlier to be selected. Coaches and administrators must have stopped working at the University five years previous. Classes now enter on a biennial basis.
"This is an impressive class that includes world-class individual performers from four of our Olympic sports programs," UNLV Director of Athletics Mike Hamrick said. "We will also be honoring one of our best teams ever as well as a loyal friend to this program for many years. I know it will be a memorable evening when we welcome this group into the hall of fame."
CHRIS RILEY (1992-96) remains the one and only UNLV male student-athlete to be named All-America all four seasons in college. The 1994 and '95 Big West Conference Player of the Year, Riley started his impressive career as the 1993 National Freshman of the Year. The San Diego native eventually won four collegiate tournaments and his 72.65 career scoring average was a school record at the time. Amazingly consistent, he placed in the top 20 in 45 of his 59 career tournaments (76 percent), finishing in the top five a stunning 21 times. Riley led the Rebels to three conference titles, one NCAA Regional crown and three top-10 NCAA finishes during his career, including a then-best runner-up finish at the 1996 finals. Also a member of the 1995 Walker Cup Team, Riley earned his degree and then moved to the Buy.com Tour for one year before earning his PGA Tour card where he has been playing ever since. A member of the 2004 U.S. Ryder Cup team, Riley picked up his first PGA Tour win at the 2002 Reno-Tahoe Open and currently ranks 80th all-time in career tour earnings with more than $8 million.
CHAD CAMPBELL (1994-96), was the top transfer in UNLV golf history after joining head coach Dwaine Knight's squad out of Midland (Texas) Junior College. A sturdy veteran, he played every round of every tournament during his two seasons and led the squad with 16 rounds par-or-under as a senior. His 15 career top-20 finishes included helping UNLV charge back from 11 strokes down on the final day to take the 1996 Golf Digest Collegiate Invitational as Campbell won individual medalist honors. A Third Team All-American in 1996, he helped that year's Rebels finish three strokes behind Arizona State at the 1996 NCAA Championship. After earning his degree, he has become the most successful professional golfer ever produced by UNLV, winning steadily on the Hooters and Buy.com tours before elevating to the PGA Tour where he was won three tournaments, including 2003's TOUR Championship. Also a member of the 2004 U.S. Ryder Cup Team, Campbell is one of the top-50 all-time money winners with more than $11 million to his credit.
Playing under head coach Shan McDonald, CYNDI PARUS (1992-95) was the top first baseman in school history. The leader of four NCAA-qualifying teams, including arguably the best club in program history in 1995, Parus helped the 1994 and '95 squads to the school's only two conference titles. UNLV's one and only softball player to earn First Team All-America honors more than once in a career, she did it three consecutive seasons (1993 and '94 as a first baseman and 1995 as an at-large player). The 1994 Big West Conference Player of the Year holds the school record for runs batted in for a game with seven and career game-winning runs batted in with 33. She still ranks second all-time in RBI, third in doubles, fourth in hits, eighth in runs and eighth in batting average with a .325 clip.
Arguably the best player in UNLV's men's tennis program history, ROGER PETTERSSON (1993-96) was easily its most decorated and remains the only three-time conference player of the year in UNLV men's athletics history, regardless of sport. Pettersson was a six-time First Team All-Big West Conference (singles and doubles combined) honoree and won the 1996 Rafael Osuna Sportsman Award, which is a national honor from the Intercollegiate Tennis Association. He was one-half of the first duo in school history to earn a spot in the NCAA Doubles Championship in 1995 and then returned to the NCAAs in 1996 and earned a school-record national ranking of No. 2. He also holds the record for highest singles ranking for a Rebel, reaching as high as fourth in 1994 and '96. The Swedish star led UNLV to three conference championships from 1994-96 and helped UNLV to a program-high team ranking of 16th as a senior. A two-time singles All-American and '96 doubles All-American, Pettersson also became his program's only CoSIDA First Team Academic All-American in 1996.
Super sprinter TREVAIA WILLIAMS (1989-92) was her school's second-ever four-year All-American in any sport (following fellow runner and UNLV Hall-of-Famer Lisa Thompson). She ended her career as a five-time All-American, earning her honors in 1989 (4th place 4x100-meter relay team), 1990 (6th place in the heptathlon), 1991 (3rd place heptathlon) and 1992 (3rd place 400-meter hurdles and 6th place 4x100-meter relay team). Named the 1992 Big West Conference Track & Field Athlete of the Year, Williams was a four-time Big West outdoor individual event champion: 100 hurdles, 400 hurdles (twice) and the high jump. Having helped the 1991 Sprintin' Rebels team to a best-ever sixth-place finish at the 1991 NCAA Indoor Championships and a best-ever sixth-place finish at the 1992 NCAA Outdoor Championships, she still holds UNLV records in the indoor pentathlon, outdoor 400 hurdles, high jump and heptathlon.
The 1989-90 LADY REBELS, coached by Jim Bolla, continue to stand as the winningest women's basketball team in UNLV history with a 28-3 record. The squad set school records for rankings, rising as high as No. 2 in the nation during the season and finishing fifth nationally in the final Associated Press poll. UNLV won the regular-season Big West Conference championship with a school-record 17 league victories and went on to dethrone four-time defending champion Long Beach State in taking the league's postseason tournament. The campaign included a school-record 22-game winning streak and a record-tying 13 road victories. The Lady Rebels would go on to host the school's first NCAA basketball tournament before losing in the second round. Members of the team are asked to call UNLV's Jerry Koloskie at (702) 895-4729 for more information regarding the ceremonies.
The lone non-athlete honoree among the class is longtime Rebel supporter MEL WOLZINGER. The local businessman has made various significant financial contributions to the UNLV athletics department over the last three decades, including helping provide the funding for construction of Rebel baseball's Earl. E. Wilson Stadium.