New Fordham Athletic Hall of Fame Class Inducted on January 25th
Jan. 26, 2009
Bronx, N.Y. - The ranks of Fordham University Athletic Hall of Famers grew by eight on Sunday, January 25th, as the Rams inducted the newest class at the annual Hall of Fame Awards Brunch in the McGinley Center.
Joining the likes of such Fordham notables as Frankie Frisch, Vince Lombardi, Vin Scully, Wellington Mara and Peter Harnisch were Joe Bernal (Swimming Coach) , Matt Fordyce FCRH `03 (Football) , Charlie Gulotta FCRH '68 (Water Polo & Swimming) , Daniel Iannuzzi CBA '81 (Swimming & Water Polo) , Greg McClure FCRH '01 (Rowing) , the late Andy Nacrelli CBA '55 , Joe Pantginis FCRH '81 (Track & Field) and Amanda Vogel FCRH '99 (Rowing).
The day started with a special mass at the University Church and the Hall of Famers and their guest then assembled in the McGinley Center Ballroom for the formal induction ceremony. Master of Ceremony Michael Kay FCRH '82 introduced each new Hall of Famer and they were presented their Hall of Fame plaque by University President, Fr. Joseph McShane, S.J. and Executive Director of Athletics, Frank McLaughlin.
Following the awards ceremony, McClure spoke on behalf of the group. "As I spoke to each of the candidates it became apparent how special a place Fordham is to all of us and how the Jesuit way of thinking has shaped all of our lives for the better," opened McClure.
McClure went on to relay the gratitude of each of the newest members to their parents, teammates, coaches and administrators.
"I would like to thank the University for its great support of club sports as well as varsity programs," summed up McClure. "Like the others being inducted today, Fordham helped me to develop academically, athletically and spiritually."
Fr. McShane then spoke to the more than 200 in attendance, noting that the Hall of Fame ceremonies were being held on January 25th, the day of the Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul.
"It is fitting that we recognize the Hall of Famers on the Feast of the Conversion of St. Paul," said Fr. McShane. "St. Paul used athletic terms in his preaching as we all are aware of him saying `I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith'."
McShane went on to address the newest Hall of Famers, "You are men and women who St. Paul would recognize as colleagues. Men and women whose lives have been distinguished on the field, men and women who made the most of their time here and ever since, have been great ambassadors for Fordham."
The ceremony ended with the Fordham band marching into the ballroom and playing an inspiring rendition of the Fordham Fight Song.
Here is a bio on each of the new Fordham Athletic Hall of Famers:
JOE BERNAL - SWIMMING COACH
Bernal led the 1973-74 Rams to the NCAA Championships, a squad that finished second at the Metropolitan Championships and seventh at the Eastern Championships. For his exploits, Bernal was named the 1973-74 Metropolitan Coach of the Year as well as recipient of the 1974 Iron Major Award as Fordham's Coach of the Year.
Six swimmers from the 1973-74 team qualified for nationals and the Rams set numerous school records under his guidance. Four of his swimmers are currently in the Fordham Athletic Hall of Fame.
While at Fordham, Bernal also created the Gator Swim Club, a club which is still active today and has produced six Olympians.
After leaving Fordham, Bernal went on to serve as the head coach at Harvard from 1977-91 and coached with the U.S. Olympic team at the 1984 and 1988 Summer Games as well as coaching at the 1991 Pan American Games.
Bernal, a native of Waltham, Mass., and graduate of Haaren High School, resides in the Boston area where he continues to serve as the CEO and President of the Gator Swim Club.
MATT FORDYCE FCRH '03 - FOOTBALL
As a senior in 2002, Fordyce helped the Rams to their first ever Patriot League title, connecting on 18 field goals and 44 PATs, both school records, while also averaging 38.3 yards/punt. He capped his senior season by connecting on an NCAA I-AA playoff record five field goals in the 2002 NCAA I-AA playoff win at Northeastern.
Fordyce also earned All-Patriot League honors as a sophomore in 2000, being named to the Second Team as a punter.
For his career, Fordyce booted 18 field goals, fifth on the Fordham all-time list, and he added 46 PATs, sixth best in school history. As a punter, he amassed 7,456 punting yards, which ranks second on the Fordham career list, and averaged 37.3 yards/punt, fifth on the all-time list.
Following graduation Fordyce signed a free agent contract with the Arizona Cardinals in both 2004 and 2005. He also signed with the Chicago Bears is 2006.
A native of Mentor, Ohio, and a graduate of St. Ignatius High School in Cleveland, Fordyce currently resides in his hometown where he is employed by Hallrich, Inc.
CHARLIE GULOTTA FCRH '68 - WATER POLO & SWIMMING
A water polo team captain as a junior and senior, Gulotta added to his Fordham career by garnering Honorable Mention All-American Collegiate Team honors in 1966. He was also a three-time team Most Valuable Player, being honored by the Fordham Booster Club for the years 1965-66-68. In 1968 he received a plaque as the member of the team who best symbolizes spirit, drive and excellence.
With the swimming squad, Gulotta served as co-captain as a senior and graduated with the school record in the 200 IM as well as being a member of the school-record setting 400 freestyle relay.
Gulotta tried out for the U.S. Water Polo Team at the 1967 Pan American Games held in Winnipeg, Canada. After graduation from Fordham he was invited to the tryouts for the 1968 U. S. Olympic Water Polo Team for the Mexico City Olympics. He made the first cut but not the final selection
A native of Brooklyn, N.Y. where he attended Bishop Loughlin High School, Gulotta resides in Bridgeport, Conn., with his wife, Christine. They are the parents of two: Katherine and Brian. He retired after 33 years working for IBM and currently works in Marketing/Business Development for a technology services company.
DANIEL IANNUZZI CBA '81 - SWIMMING & WATER POLO
With polo, Iannuzzi closed out his career by earning First Team All-East & Mid-Atlantic All-Conference honors as a senior in 1981, helping the squad to a second place finish at the Mid-Atlantic Championships. In 1978 and 1979, he guided the Rams to the Metropolitan Championship.
With the swimming team, Iannuzzi qualified for the Eastern Championships as a freshman in 1978 and broke the school 100 backstroke record as a senior, winning the event at the Metropolitan Championships.
Iannuzzi is a native of Huntington Valley, Pa., where he graduated from Lower Moreland High School. He currently resides in Surrey, England, with his wife, Lorna, where he works in the petroleum industry.
Iannuzzi joins his brother, Joel, who was inducted in 1997, in the Fordham Athletic Hall of Fame
GREG McCLURE FCRH '01 - ROWING
At the Dad Vail Collegiate National Championships, McClure was a gold medalist in the men's varsity lightweight four in 2001, a bronze medalist in 2000 with the lightweight four and a silver medalist in 1998 in the novice four.
McClure won three gold medals at the New York State Championships (varsity heavyweight four (2001), varsity lightweight eight (1999) and the novice four (1998)) and was also a 2000 Atlantic 10 gold medalist with the lightweight four and a 1999 Atlantic 10 silver medalist with the lightweight eight.
McClure, who is just the fourth person in Fordham history to make the finals at the World Indoor Rowing Championships, placed seventh for collegiate lightweights in 2001 at Crash B's, 13th internationally.
A 1999 bronze medal winner at the Intercollegiate Rowing National Championships and Champion International Collegiate Championships in both the varsity heavyweight straight four and the varsity lightweight eight, McClure was also a quarterfinalist that season at the Royal Henley Regatta Visitors Cup, an international regatta that features selected crews including Olympic and World Champions. Additionally, he won gold medals at the National Club Nationals (lightweight eight) and the Royal Canadian Henley Regatta (lightweight four) that season.
In 2001, McClure won three gold medals at the U.S. Club Championships as well as taking fourth with the men's four at the Intercollegiate Rowing National Championships.
A team captain from 1999-2001, McClure set the school lightweight 6000 meters record and is in the top five all-time in the 2000 meters.
Academically, McClure maintained a Dean's Academic scholarship all four years.
McClure, a native of White Plains, N.Y., where he attended Iona Prep, resides in Tuckahoe, N.Y., with his wife, Karen. He currently works as a Supervisory Manager for JP Morgan Private Bank.
ANDREW NACRELLI CBA '55 - FOOTBALL
A two-way starter as a junior and senior, Nacrelli led the team in receptions. Following his senior season, he was invited to play as a punter in the 1954 Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama. That year he received team Most Valuable Player honors and was named All-Catholic All-American for Fordham.
After graduating from Fordham, Andy was drafted into the Army. While serving at the Brooke Medical Center, he played football for their team at Fort Houston Texas and was named to the Army Times All-Army team for 1957. After his discharge from the Army he played in the Canadian Football League for the Hamilton Tiger Cats, and then was drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles in 1958.
In 1960 Andy married Esther Conley from Havertown, Pennsylvania. He then began a teaching and coaching career at Darby-Colwyn High School, while earning a Masters degree in Guidance at Villanova University. Several years later he joined American Seating out of Grand Rapids, Michigan, in a sales management position. In his career with American Seating and later Irwin Seating he enjoyed his connection with school districts and architects in the early stages of school and theater construction. After a few transfers, Andy and his family fell in love with the Northwest and settled in Lake Oswego, Oregon.
Andy was the son of Joseph and Elizabeth Nacrelli of Chester, Pennsylvania. He was the middle son of seven children, six sons and one daughter, Josephine, who played a significant role in the lives of all of her beloved brothers. He attended St. James High School in Chester where he received academic as well as athletic awards. His younger brother Henry is also a Fordham alumnus class of 1958.
Andy is remembered with love and pride by his wife Esther and his four children, Andrew, Timothy, Jennifer and Elizabeth, nine grandchildren, and brothers Joseph, John, Henry, Anthony and Martin.
JOSEPH PANTGINIS FCRH '91 - TRACK & FIELD
Pantginis set the Fordham high jump record with a leap of 7' 1.75" as a senior in 1991, scoring in the event at the IC4A Indoor Championship. He also won the 1991 CTC and Metropolitan Conference high jump championships.
A 1991 NCAA championship qualifier in the high jump as a senior, he ranked 18th in the nation in the event that season.
As a junior in 1990, Pantginis scored in the high jump at the IC4A Indoor Championship, ranking in the top five in the east. He also won the Metropolitan indoor high jump champion as a sophomore.
Pantginis is a native of Mamaroneck, N.Y., where he graduated from Mamaroneck High School. He now resides in New Rochelle, N.Y., with his wife, Kristina, and their two children, Katerina and Angelica. Pantginis is employed as a Senior Biotechnology Analyst - Equity Research.
AMANDA VOGEL FCRH '99 - ROWING
Vogel, whose wins at Dad Vail have been the only victories Fordham has ever had at the national regatta, quickly became a member of the top women's crew at Fordham, rowing with the varsity as a sophomore. She won an Atlantic 10 gold medal as well as a Dad Vail championship that season in a boat that would have qualified for the NCAA Championships (all Dad Vail winners received an automatic bid). Unfortunately, Fordham was not eligible because of their club status.
Vogel went on to race at the prestigious Women's Henley Regatta in England as a sophomore and made the final four of thirty international college crews in the collegiate four.
As a junior, Vogel was in the top four again, winning the Atlantic 10 championship for the second year in a row and also repeating as Dad Vail Champions. Her senior year saw repeat titles at the Atlantic 10 Championship and the Dad Vails, with Vogel serving as the stroke. She helped the crew to an undefeated season the spring of her senior year and added a New York State Championship to their other accomplishments
In 1999, Vogel made a return trip to Henley and stroked her crew to the final four among twenty-nine international university crews. A native of Longmeadow, Mass., Vogel graduated from Longmeadow High School. She currently resides in East Elmhurst, N.Y., and is a graduate student in Applied Statistics at Rutgers University.