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Hamburg Wall of Fame Inductees Class of 2013

A look at the Sports Legends, Teams to be honored during the Sept. 28 ceremony at the Grange Building

Hamburg H.S. Swimming and Diving: A Team of Distinction
The Hamburg High School girls swimming and diving team dominated Section VI during the mid-1980s. The Lady “Bullfrogs” won 54 consecutive dual meets from October 1983 – October 1988. The Hamburg High School class of 1988 was undefeated from its first modified swim meet to the final varsity meet in 1987. Thirteen members of these teams went on to swim or dive at the intercollegiate level.

Bob Pearson — Class of 1970
Pearson was an athlete who was a winner in baseball. Legend has it that he was the first player to hit a home run over the Howe Field fence, a blast of more than 400 feet, during a 1960 game. After graduation, he played five years of professional baseball, in the Detroit Tigers and Chicago White Sox organizations.

William Weiss – Class of 1974
Weiss was a four-year member of Hamburg’s varsity tennis team and, according to the school, is one of the best tennis players to ever play for Hamburg. He was the first tennis All-American from the University of Rochester and was inducted into the University of Rochester’s Sports Hall of Fame.

Joanne Poppenberg – Class of 1970
Poppenberg was one of the pioneers of girls sports at Hamburg. A 1973 graduate, she was awarded the “Director’s Key,” after being named most valuable player of the field hockey, volleyball, basketball and softball teams, that school year. She went on to a college career at SUNY College at Cortland, pitching for the softball team.

Ronald Smolinski – Class of 1983
One of the highest-ranked wrestlers to ever compete at Hamburg, Smolinski dominated his weight class of 177 pounds during his senior year, finishing undefeated at 33 – 0, winning six tournaments and taking third at states. He finished 37 – 1, that season.

Tracey Vincent Howe – Class of 1989
Vincent-Howe was one the most versatile athletes to ever grace the Hamburg hallways. She was part of Hamburg school championship teams in track and field five times, field hockey twice and basketball three times, totaling 15 letters in all. As a basketball player, she received All-ECIC and All-WNY honors, earning her a basketball scholarship to Houghton College.

Bridget Merrick - Class of 1994
Merrick was a tennis player, who, as a senior, was undefeated in ECIC league play with a 12 – 0 record, finished third in ECIC championships, second in the Section VI championships and in third place at the state championships. She went on to play second singles and first doubles at the University of Richmond.

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