Tillman, Grace headline 2018 Arizona Sports Hall of Fame induction class
PHOENIX – The late Pat Tillman and former Arizona Diamondbacks first baseman Mark Grace are among the six members of the 2018 Arizona Sports Hall of Fame induction class announced Wednesday.
Joining them are University of Arizona softball coach Mike Candrea, five-time Olympic gold medalist Gary Hall Jr., Xavier College Preparatory athletic director and former girls golf coach Sister Lynn Winsor and former Scottsdale Chaparral High School softball coach Jeff Oscarson.
The induction ceremony will take place on Nov. 1 at the Scottsdale Plaza Resort.
“After it sank in, I was absolutely grateful and very humbled and honored by it,” Winsor said.
Tillman helped lead ASU to the 1997 Rose Bowl as a linebacker and earned three consecutive selections to the Pac-10 All-Academic team. After the Arizona Cardinals selected him in the seventh round of the 1998 NFL Draft, he went on to break the franchise record for tackles in 2000. In the spring of 2002, Tillman left the NFL to join the U.S. Army. He was killed in Afghanistan in 2004.
Candrea is the winningest coach in NCAA Division I softball history. He has led the Arizona Wildcats to eight national championship wins and 22 Women’s College World Series appearances. Candrea has won the conference Coach of the Year Award 12 times and national Coach of the Year four times. In 2004, he coached the U.S. Olympic softball team to a gold medal.
Grace finished his 16-year Major League Baseball career with the Diamondbacks after spending 12 years with the Chicago Cubs. He was a key part of the 2001 World Series victory over the New York Yankees. Grace works as a television analyst and instructor for the D-backs.
Hall followed in the footsteps of his father and grandfather when it came to swimming. Gary Hall Sr. won three Olympic medals and his father was an NCAA champion. Hall Jr. is a former Brophy College Preparatory swimmer, and he represented the U.S. in 1996, 2000 and 2004 Olympics. Hall was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes in 2000 and has inspired others with the disease.
Winsor has coached the Xavier girls golf team to 35 Arizona 6A/Division I golf titles, including 16 consecutively.
She arrived at Xavier in 1974 and has led the school to a 457-25 record. More than 55 percent of her golfers have earned collegiate golf scholarships.
“I know it’s a tremendous honor for myself, and for the school,” she said.
Oscarson led the Firebirds softball team to five state softball titles during his tenure of over two decades. His career coaching the Firebirds ended in 2003 with a 450-122-3 record. He played baseball at Saguaro High School and was drafted by the Chicago Cubs in 1970. He opted not to sign and, instead, attended Mesa Community College.
An individual must meet one of three criteria to be eligible for the Arizona Sports Hall of Fame: immediately recognized as an Arizonan, a native of Arizona, or have made at least two significant contributions to the athletics community in Arizona.
“Congratulations to each member of this outstanding new Arizona Sports Hall of Fame class,” ASEC Executive Director Nikki Balich-Cammarata said in a statement. “Whether they are renowned locally, nationally or globally, each of these honorees has earned enshrinement for shaping Arizona’s sports history.”
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