Blomn, Cioffi, Sabaliauskas, Ulicny to Be Inducted into MSU Athletic Hall of Fame

Montclair, NJ (11/24/10) - The Montclair State Department of Athletics will add four new members into its Hall of Fame as the inductees will be honored on Thursday, December 16, 2010 at The Conference Center at Montclair State University (located in University Hall). The induction dinner will begin at 6:30 pm.

Paul Cioffi (football), William Blomn (swimming & diving), Megan Ulicny and Stephanie Sabaliauskas comprise the 38th class to be inducted bringing the total number of members to 195. Ulicny and Sabaliauskas become the first athletes from the sports of field hockey and women’s soccer, respectively to be enshrined in the Montclair State Athletic Hall of Fame.

PAUL CIOFFI (1987-1990)

He was a quarterback’s nightmare and an offensive coordinator’s one too. Every week when he stepped onto the field, the opposing offense always had to ask the question: Where is No. 90? The player in that jersey number was Paul Cioffi (Marlboro, NJ) and for four seasons Cioffi wrecked havoc on Montclair State’s opponents week in and week out.  In his first year Cioffi had 68 tackles and 11 sacks yet it was in the first game of the 1988 season that made him a household name. Against Mansfield College, Cioffi put together one of the outstanding games by any Montclair football player as he registered five sacks, setting the single-game record. It was the start of an incredible season for Cioffi, who went on to set a single-season record with 16 sacks along with 108 tackles earning him All-NJAC, ECAC and All-America honors. The following year he was even better helping Montclair State to the NJAC Championship and NCAA Division III Playoffs as he racked up a record 158 tackles, breaking the season mark held by Sam Mills. Cioffi posted 15 sacks and picked up just about every award imaginable including NJAC Defensive Player of the Year as well as All-America accolades from five different organizations including the American Football Coaches Association.  Cioffi capped his career in 1990 with 85 tackles (22 for loss) and 14 sacks to raise his total to 56, the best sack total in school history. Included in those totals was a truly amazing effort against Kean in a mid-October contest. The Red Hawks trailed 10-7 in the fourth quarter when Cioffi single-handedly took the game over. He blocked a punt that was recovered for a score giving Montclair the lead. On the Cougars’ next possession, Cioffi intercepted a pass and returned it for a touchdown as Montclair pulled out a 21-10 victory. He would be named All-NJAC again and landed on every All-America Team while becoming the lone Division III player in the nation to earn a spot in the prestigious East-West Shrine Game in Palo Alto, California.

 

WILLIAM BLOMN (1994-1997)

Perhaps no swimmer in the history of the men’s program was as dominant as William Blomn (Clifton, NJ). An outstanding competitor in three different strokes, Blomn was a two-time All-American for Montclair State in the mid 1990s. In his first season with the Red Hawks, Blomn set the school records in both long-distance freestyle events – the 1000 and 1650 both which still stand today. At the Metropolitan Championships in 1994, Blomn shattered the school mark in the 1000 freestyle as he registered a time of 9:42.68, breaking the previous standard by 28 seconds. As if that weren’t impressive enough, later in that meet he broke the Montclair record in the 1650 freestyle with a time that not only eclipsed the old mark by 48 seconds, he finished over two pool lengths ahead of the second-place finisher. The two was the second-best in the nation that year and qualified him for the NCAA Division III Championships where he earned the first of his All-America honors after taking sixth-place in the 1650 freestyle. The following season, Blomn was chosen the Metropolitan Conference Swimmer of the Year and returned to the national championship meet where he again garnered All-America honors in the 1650 freestyle. He also set a new record in the 500 freestyle at the NCAA with a time of 4:40.03. After being named the Metropolitan Swimmer of the Year again in 1996, Blomn capped off his tremendous career with a third NCAA appearance in 1997 and also established new Montclair State records in the 200 freestyle, 100 and 200 butterfly and the 400 individual medley. A holder of seven different records, all of Blomn’s marks still stand as of today.

 

MEGAN ULICNY (2001-2003)

For the past decade, the Montclair State field hockey program has become a more prominent name in the Division III landscape. Much of that success can be traced back to the beginning of the 2000s when the Red Hawks went 15-6 and captured the ECAC Championship for the first time since 1990. On that team was a sophomore who contributed to that success scoring three goals and accumulating seven points. The next year, Megan Ulicny (Edgewood, NJ / Edgewood) became a more an offensive force finishing second on the team with seven goals and 20 points while leading the team in assists with six as Montclair once again returned to the ECAC Mid-Atlantic Tournament. But that season served as just a warmup for perhaps the finest season any Montclair State field hockey player has ever produced. From the outset, Ulicny was hands down the best player in the New Jersey Athletic Conference in 2003 leading the league in three different categories, including points, points per game and assists. She registered 53 points, a new Montclair State single-season record breaking the old mark by 14 points. She scored 18 goals – the second highest single season total and assisted on 19 others, the latter mark shattering the previous MSU record. Ulicny, a four-time NJAC Offensive Player of the Week during the year, was the driving force in the finest season in Montclair State history as the Red Hawks won 15 games, matching the school record for wins. MSU against went to the postseason however this time it was the NCAA Division III Tournament marking the first time that the Red Hawks had qualified for the national championship tournament. She earned just about every award imaginable as she was selected the NJAC Midfielder of the Year while also earning spots on the All-NJAC and All-ECAC squads. Ulicny would be selected a First-Team All-South Atlantic Region and she became the first Montclair State player to be named First-Team All-America as she was tabbed by the National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA). Ulicny finished second all-time in MSU history in assists (26), third in points scored (82) and sixth in goals scored with 28.

 

STEPHANIE SABALIAUSKAS (2001-2004)

The Montclair State women’s soccer team is the youngest of the 17 sports that University has to offer. Established as a varsity sport in 1990, the program has had its share of outstanding and talented players but never a member of the Hall of Fame, until now. In the early portion of the decade, the Montclair State was one the rise in the realm of women’s soccer. Coming off an ECAC Championship in 2000, Stephanie Sabaliasukas (Edison, NJ) came to MSU the following year and became one of the foundation pieces for the greatest stretch of success the program has seen. In her sophomore season, she scored 13 goals and posted 30 points as she helped Montclair State to the NJAC Championship Game for the first time. She would earn All-NJAC First-Team honors and became just the third player to be selected to the National Soccer Coaches Association All-Region Team as she landed on the First-Team. The next season, Sabaliauskas duplicated her scoring totals, including six-game winning tallies as Montclair State won the NJAC regular-season title and advanced to the conference tournament title game for the second straight year. She would be named the NJAC Offensive Player of the Year and registered her second consecutive All-Region honor as she was selected to the NSCAA Third Team. In 2004, Sabaliauskas sparked a late-season run by the Red Hawks as for the third consecutive year they reached the NJAC Championship Game against The College of New Jersey. But after suffering two tough losses to the Lions the previous seasons, Montclair turned the tables on the Lions winning the conference crown in penalty kicks. The championship would send Montclair State to the NCAA Division III Women’s Soccer Tournament for the first time in program history. Sabaliauskas would earn her third straight All-NJAC First Team honor as she double digits in goals for the third time, netting 10 along with five assists. Sabaliauskas finished as the third all-time leading scorer in program history with 95 points and she was third in goals scored (41) and game-winning goals (11) at the time of her graduation. But her exploits on the field tell only half of the career of this outstanding student-athlete. She is one of only 10 athletes in Montclair State history to earn All-Academic honors from the prestigious CoSIDA/ESPN the Magazine Academic All-America program as she was selected to the District II All-Academic Squad Second Team in 2003. Following her playing career, Sabaliauskas was named the Division III Female Athlete of the Year by the Collegiate Athletic Administrator’s of New Jersey (CAANJ), which awards the honors to the student-athlete who excels not only on the playing field, but in the classroom and as a member of the campus community.