Independent Student Newspaper of UW Oshkosh Campuses

The Advance-Titan

Independent Student Newspaper of UW Oshkosh Campuses

The Advance-Titan

Independent Student Newspaper of UW Oshkosh Campuses

The Advance-Titan

UWO Athletic Hall of Fame inducts 10

Courtesy of UWO Athletics — The UWO Athletic Hall of Fame inducted 10 new members Oct. 1 at the Culver Family Welcome Center. Front Row (L-R): Kerrie (Main) Washburn, Natalie DeMichei, Ann Marie (Fink) Caruso, Holly (Ozanich) Cappelle, Jen Young Back Row (L-R): Jim Gasper (Mike Gasper inductee), Nata Wara, David Christman, Chris Hansman, Derek Kasten

The UW Oshkosh Athletics Hall of Fame increased its membership to 241 with Sunday’s (Oct. 1) induction of former student-athletes at the Culver Family Welcome Center.

Inductees included Holly (Ozanich) Cappelle (women’s track & field), Ann Marie (Fink) Caruso (women’s track & field), David Christman (baseball), Natalie DeMichei (women’s basketball), Mike Gasper (baseball), Chris Hansman (men’s swimming & diving), Derek Kasten (men’s soccer), Nate Wara (football), Kerrie (Main) Washburn (women’s track & field) and Jen Young (women’s golf). Gasper was inducted posthumously into the hall of fame.

A five-time national champion and nine-time All-American, Cappelle enjoyed a very decorated career while competing for the UWO women’s track & field program from 2008-11.

Cappelle’s final season as a Titan was her finest. She captured seven individual titles as UWO won both the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference and National Collegiate Athletic Association Division III indoor and outdoor championships.

Cappelle was named the Outstanding Field Performer at the 2011 WIAC Indoor Championship after winning both the shot put and 20-pound weight throw. She won both of those events two weeks later as UWO registered its seventh Division III indoor title in program history.

Cappelle and the Titans continued their success during the 2011 outdoor season. Cappelle won both the hammer throw and shot put at the WIAC Championship before winning the hammer throw and placing second in the shot put at the Division III Championship.

The U.S. Track & Field and Cross Country Coaches Association presented Cappelle with three major awards during the 2011 season – Division III Indoor Field Athlete of the Year, Division III Midwest Region Outdoor Field Athlete of the Year and Division III Outdoor Field Athlete of the Year. She also was named the 2011 Division III Track & Field winner of the Collegiate Women’s Sports Award.

Cappelle earned a pair of Division III national titles in 2010 by winning the indoor 20-pound weight throw and the outdoor hammer throw. She also placed second nationally in the indoor 20-pound weight throw in 2009 and third in the indoor and fourth in the outdoor shot put in 2010.

Cappelle accumulated seven WIAC titles, including three consecutive victories in the outdoor shot put. Cappelle, a Green Bay East High School graduate, currently owns the outdoor hammer throw record for both UWO and the WIAC. She set the standard with a cast of 200-0 at the 2011 Division III Championship.

Cappelle, who appeared in the Faces in the Crowd section of the March 21, 2011, issue of Sports Illustrated, was selected to the WIAC All-Centennial Women’s Track & Field Team in 2012.

Caruso, a two-time national champion and seven-time All-American, was involved in several notable firsts for the UWO women’s track & field program.

In 1989, Caruso became the first national champion in UWO history when she won the long jump with a school-record leap of 19-2 1/4 at the NCAA Division III Outdoor Championship in Naperville, Ill. Her performance from that meet held as a school record until 1997.

In 1990, Caruso, along with teammates Dena Beekman, Kim Bemowski and Tina Partoll, captured the school’s first national relay title with their winning time of 3:56.50 for 1,600 meters at Division III Indoor Championship in Northampton, Massachusetts.

Caruso, a Mayville High School graduate, competed for the Titans from 1987-90 and concluded her career as an eight-time WIAC champion. She also was a member of one national and six conference championship teams.

Caruso’s All-America awards concluded with an eighth-place finish in the 400-meter hurdles at the 1989 Division III Outdoor and a sixth-place finish in the long jump at the 1990 Division III Indoor championships.

Caruso won all three of her WIAC indoor titles in 1990. She accomplished the feat with victories in the 600-meter run, long jump and 1,600-meter relay.

Caruso ran to WIAC outdoor titles in the 400-meter hurdles from 1987-90. She also took first place in the outdoor long jump in 1989 and 1990.

Caruso, who held the Titans’ outdoor 400-meter hurdles record of 1:02.38 from 1990-2016, was named the 1990 UWO John Taylor Female Scholar-Athlete of the Year. She also was selected to the WIAC All-Centennial Women’s Track & Field Team in 2012.

Christman was a two-time All-America pitcher who helped the UWO baseball program to one World Series appearance, four district titles, four conference championships and an 87-39 record from 1968-71.

The left-handed throwing Christman pitched in 33 career games for the Titans and compiled a 17-8 record with 170 strikeouts and a 2.65 earned run average across 200.2 innings. Christman pitched in six games during the 1968 season and posted a 3-1 record with 29 strikeouts and a 1.68 earned run average in 32 innings of work.

The following year Christman received All-WIAC First Team, National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics All-District 14 First Team and NAIA All-America Honorable Mention recognition after totaling a 6-1 record with 44 strikeouts and a 1.29 earned run average during a team-leading 56 innings pitched.

Christman repeated as an All-WIAC First Team, NAIA All-District 14 First Team and NAIA All-America Honorable Mention selection in 1970. He registered a 5-2 record that season with 46 strikeouts and a 2.37 earned run average through a team-leading 53 innings of duty. Christman also hit .364 with one home run, one double and six runs batted in during 22 at-bats.

In 1971, Christman and the Titans compiled a 24-16 record and captured their fourth straight WIAC and NAIA District 14 championships. UWO then won the NAIA Area IV title to advance to the World Series in Phoenix, Ariz., where they finished fifth. Christman etched a 3-4 record that season with 51 strikeouts and a 5.13 earned run average during 59.2 innings pitched.

Appearing on the court in all but one of UWO’s 106 games from 1992-95, DeMichei accumulated a career that ranks among the finest in the history of the school’s women’s basketball program.

DeMichei was a forward for the Titans and totaled 1,453 career points while shooting 56% from the field and 61.4 from the free throw line. DeMichei additionally compiled 704 rebounds, 118 steals, 95 assists and 37 blocked shots for a UWO team that achieved an 86-19 record with her as a game participant.

DeMichei, who is the only Titan to average 12.9 points or better during each of her four seasons, ranks third in UWO history in both career scoring and rebounding. She currently ranks seventh in the WIAC in career field goal percentage and 21st in scoring.

DeMichei led UWO in scoring during the 1992, 1993 and 1994 seasons while pacing the WIAC in field goal percentage in 1992 and 1995.

In 1992, DeMichei collected All-WIAC honorable mention recognition by averaging 14.3 points and 8.1 rebounds per contest. The Titans shared the conference title with UW-Eau Claire before suffering an 83-81 loss to the Blugolds in the first round of the Division III Championship. 

In 1994, DeMichei and the Titans tallied a 24-3 record and won the WIAC title outright while advancing to the quarterfinal round of the Division III Championship. DeMichei picked up Division III All-Great Lakes Region and All-WIAC First Team accolades after averaging 14.5 points and 6.9 rebounds per contest. 

The Titans opened the 1995 season with 17 straight wins and concluded the campaign with a 28-3 record, a share of the WIAC title and an appearance in the Division III national championship game.

DeMichei averaged 13.6 points and 5.9 rebounds per game while shooting 61.8 percent from the field in 1995 to collect All-WIAC First Team, Division III All-Great Lakes Region First Team and Division III All-America Honorable Mention recognition. She totaled 17 points and 10 rebounds during UWO’s 86-80 victory over UW-Eau Claire in the national quarterfinal, 15 points and eight rebounds during the Titans’ 82-69 win over Salem State College (Mass.) in the national semifinal and 19 points and 12 rebounds during UWO’s 59-55 loss to Capital University (Ohio) in the national championship contest.

Gasper, who received All-America Third Team honors when UWO won the 1994 NCAA Division III Baseball World Series, enjoyed a wealth of success while pitching for the Titans.

Gasper, a right-handed thrower, helped UWO to one national title, four World Series appearances, four regional titles, four conference championships and a 132-42 record from 1991-94.

The Sparta High School graduate pitched in 44 contests during his UWO career and compiled a 24-8 record with eight shutouts, 23 complete games, 128 strikeouts and a 2.63 earned run average across 236.1 innings. He currently shares the WIAC record for career shutouts while ranking fourth in the league in complete games and 10th in victories.

In 1991, he helped the Titans to a 27-15 record and a third-place World Series finish by totaling a 6-3 record with three shutouts, 26 strikeouts and a 3.73 earned average in 72.1 innings pitched.

Gasper, who was named to the Division III All-Midwest Region Second Team in 1991 and Division III All-Midwest Region First Team in 1992, received All-WIAC South Division Honorable Mention recognition in 1993 when UWO registered a 28-15 record and finished second in the World Series. Gasper tallied a 4-2 record that season with one shutout, 24 strikeouts and a 2.55 earned run average in 42.1 innings pitched.

In 1994, Gasper helped UWO to its 15th WIAC championship in 16 seasons, fifth straight Division III regional title and second Division III national title in program history. The Titans additionally compiled a 41-4 record, including a 6-2 victory over Wesleyan University (Connecticut) in the national championship game. 

The 2015 Sparta High School Wall of Fame inductee was living in West Salem and serving as the Purchasing Director at UW-La Crosse when he unexpectedly passed away in April 2022.

Hansman, a Neenah High School graduate, performed for the UWO men’s swimming & diving team during the 2002, 2003 and 2004 seasons after competing for UW-Stevens Point in 2001.

Hansman transferred to UWO in 2001 and claimed WIAC 1-meter and 3-meter diving titles for the Titans while collecting All-America recognition with his fifth-place finish in the three-meter bracket at the Division III Championship.

In 2003, Hansman was named Diver of the Meet at the WIAC Championship after winning the 1-meter and 3-meter events with scores of 464.75 and 480.55, respectively. He also placed seventh in the 3-meter and eighth in the 1-meter diving categories to pick up All-America accolades at the Division III Championship.

Hansman repeated as Diver of the Meet at the 2004 WIAC Championship. He won the 1-meter event with a score of 485.70 and the 3-meter classification with a result of 508.45. 

Hansman was selected to the WIAC Men’s Swimming & Diving All-Centennial Team in 2012. He is currently one of only three athletes to win the WIAC 3-meter diving title four times and one of only seven athletes to capture the league’s 1-meter diving championship on three occasions.

One of only two All-America First Team award winners in the glorious 32-year history of the UWO men’s soccer program, Kasten produced an impressive three-year career while playing for the Titans from 2001-03.

Kasten, a forward, was a starter in 57 of the 59 UWO matches he participated in. The Whitnall High School graduate concluded his career with 42 goals, 25 assists and 109 points. He currently ranks third in UWO history in both career goals and points.

Kasten, who also owns 14 career match-winning goals, helped the Titans to a remarkable 50-8-2 record and three NCAA Division III postseason appearances.

Kasten transferred to UWO for the 2001 season. His impact with the Titans was felt immediately as he tallied seven goals, five assists, 19 points and two match-winning scores. Kasten’s performance helped UWO to a 16-3 record and an appearance in the second round of the Division III Championship.

Kasten collected Division III All-Central Region First Team honors in 2002 after leading the Titans with his 15 goals, five assists, 35 points and five match-winning goals. UWO concluded the 2002 season with a 13-4-2 record and an appearance in the second round of the Division III Championship.

Kasten had a team-best seven match-winning goals in 2003, including the decisive score in the final regulation minute of UWO’s 1-0 victory over Wheaton College (Illinois) in the third round of the Division III Championship. Kasten’s goal also was a historic one as it was the 1,000th score in UWO history.

Kasten, a three-time member of the WIAC Scholastic Honor Roll, was selected to the league’s All-Centennial Men’s Soccer Team in 2012.

Wara had an extremely special career with the Titans from 2009-12. The dual-threat performer established numerous school records and earned several conference and national accolades while starting all 44 games for the Titans at quarterback.

Wara helped UWO to a 28-16 record, including a 13-1 mark in 2012 when the Titans won their first WIAC title since 1976 and advanced to the semifinal round of the NCAA Division III Championship during the program’s inaugural postseason appearance.

Wara currently ranks third in the WIAC in career total yards (11,202), fourth in passing efficiency (147.80), fifth in pass completions and sixth in passing touchdowns. In UWO’s career listings, Wara ranks first in pass completion percentage (64.1), pass attempts and pass completions; second in both passing efficiency and total yards; and third in both passing yards and passing touchdowns.

UWO’s treasured 2012 season was also Wara’s best. He was named the WIAC Player of the Year, Division III West Region Offensive Player of the Year, Division III Offensive Player of the Year, Division III Jim Ballard Quarterback of the Year as well as a Gagliardi Trophy finalist after compiling 3,311 yards and 30 touchdowns passing and 740 yards and 10 scores rushing. Wara’s performance that year helped the Titans defeat three-time defending national champion and fifth-ranked UW-Whitewater during the regular season and third-ranked Linfield College (Oregon) in the postseason.

An All-America performer in two indoor events and four outdoor categories, Washburn’s versatility helped the UWO women’s track & field program win six national titles during her career as a Titan from 1994-97.

Washburn earned both of her indoor All-America awards at the 1997 NCAA Division III Championship held in the Kolf Sports Center. She placed second in the triple jump with a school-record distance of 39-10 and third in the long jump with a leap of 17-10 1/4 to help the Titans finish third in the team competition.

UWO won Division III indoor titles in each of Washburn’s previous three seasons as she qualified for the national championship in both the long and triple jumps in both 1995 and 1996.

Additionally, Washburn was a member of UWO teams that won four WIAC outdoor titles and league indoor championships in 1995 and 1996.

Washburn captured WIAC indoor titles in the triple jump in 1996 and both the long and triple jumps in 1997. The Webster High School graduate also was the WIAC outdoor champion in both the javelin throw and triple jump in 1996 and the triple jump in 1997.

Washburn, who still owns the UWO indoor and outdoor triple jump records with her measurements from the 1997 season, concluded her career as a four-time WIAC Athlete of the Week selection. In 2012, the WIAC named Washburn to its All-Centennial Women’s Track & Field Team.

Young, the only four-time All-America award winner in the history of women’s golf in the WIAC,  for the Titans from the 2003-04 through the 2006-07 seasons and collected NCAA Division III All-America Second Team and All-WIAC First Team honors all four years. 

The Westosha Central High School graduate received Division III All-Central Region First Team accolades during the 2005-06 and 2006-07 seasons as well as being named the WIAC Player of the Year in the 2003-04 and 2006-07 campaigns.

Young’s first season at UWO was an exciting one as she led the Titans to a WIAC title and a fourth-place finish at the Division III Championship held at The Golf Courses of Lawsonia in Green Lake. Young placed second with an 18-hole score of 168 strokes at the WIAC and 36th with a 72-hole score of 342 strokes at the Division III championships.

Young’s final season as a Titan included six top four finishes among the 10 tournaments that she participated in. Young placed second with an 18-hole score of 158 strokes at the WIAC and 12th with a 72-hole score of 322 strokes at the Division III championships.

Young, a four-time WIAC Athlete of the Week selection, was chosen to the league’s All-Centennial Women’s Golf Team in 2012.

The UW Oshkosh Athletics Hall of Fame was established in 1974 to pay tribute and give deserved acknowledgement to former athletes, coaches and friends of the University. It is also intended to enhance school tradition by honoring those people who have exhibited exceptional ability or given distinctive recognition to the UWO athletics program while on campus or since graduation.

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