Celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2011, Montclair State’s Athletic Hall of Fame welcomed four new members: football standout Kevin Kelly ‘00, field hockey All-American Laura Popes ’01, women’s soccer record-holder Stephanie Romanko ’03, and current baseball coach Norm Schoenig ’73.
Also honored was the late John Greco ’02, the former men’s lacrosse coach, who was inducted into the Century Club for coaches who have achieved 100 or more career victories. Greco, who passed away in 2010, won 101 contests—96 with the men’s team in his eight-year tenure and five wins as the co-head coach of the women’s squad in 2002.
Kelly was a four-time All-NJAC selection—two each for offense and defense. He helped Montclair State to three consecutive post-season appearances from 1998-2000 as the Red Hawks captured two NJAC Championships in addition to two NCAA Division III Tournament berths. Kelly recorded 14 sacks during the 1999 season and the following year was named the NJAC Defensive Player of the Year.
Popes was the first All-American in Montclair State field hockey history and finished as the second all-time leading scorer in 2001. The two-time All-NJAC selection led a resurgence of the Montclair State program which set a school record in 2001 with 15 victories in addition to winning the ECAC Mid-Atlantic Championship.
Romanko became the first Montclair State women’s soccer player to be named an All-American as she played every minute of every game in goal for the Red Hawks from 1999-2002. The all-time leader in wins (55), saves (356), goals against average (0.78), and shutouts (45), Romanko was selected as the NJAC Defensive Player of the Year in her senior season and led Montclair State to its first NJAC Championship game in 2002.
Schoenig joined football coach Rick Giancola as the only active coaches to be enshrined in the Hall of Fame. A two-time NCAA Division III Coach of the Year, Schoenig has won more games than any coach in Montclair State athletic history with 681 wins entering the 2012 season. His other numbers are equally impressive: five NJAC championships, seven NCAA regional titles, 17 regional tournament appearances, as well as seven appearances in the NCAA Division III World Series winning a total of 69 NCAA Tournament contests.