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July 21, 2014 07:31 PM

Five To Enter Augustana's Athletic Hall Of Fame

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Five former student-athletes, who excelled in their chosen sports, have been selected for induction into the Augustana College Athletic Hall of Fame.

Paul Schenkelberg (basketball), Kurt Jonker (football), Jenny Hill (softball), Jon Harris (football), and Leah Gifford (track/cross country) will be honored at the Augustana Athletic Hall of Fame Banquet on Friday, September 26, at the Sioux Falls Convention Center. The event begins at 6 p.m. with a social hour.

Dinner will be served at 7 p.m., followed by the induction ceremonies at 8 p.m. For reservations contact the Augustana Athletic Club at (605) 274-5420 or online by visiting

Schenkelberg (Cedar Rapids, Iowa)  was a starter on the Vikings' 1977-78 basketball team that claimed Augustana's first outright North Central Conference championship. Coached by Mel Klein, the team was the first in school history to win 11 games in North Central Conference competition and the first to go undefeated in league play at home. Schenkelberg is one of the most accurate field goal shooters in Augustana basketball history at .607 percent.

Jonker (Inver Grove Heights, Minn.) lettered three years and posted 33 consecutive starts on the Vikings' offensive line. He earned honorable mention on the All-North Central Conference team in 1979. He was a key player with the Vikings' 1977 team that earned conference runner-up honors. He also played on the Vikings' 1977-78 conference championship basketball team. Jonker signed with the Kansas City Chiefs (1980) and the San Francisco 49ers (1982) and with each team survived until the final cut.

Hill (Sioux Falls O'Gorman) was a four-time All-North Central Conference choice (1998-2001) and was tabbed conference player of the week six times. She was among the top 30 hitters in the NCAA for three years (1998, 2000, 2001) and in 2001 led the national in hits (96) in and RBIs (74). In 2001 she was earned the NCC Honor Athlete Award. Hill set school career records for hits in a season and career, most RBIs in a season and career, and most doubles in a season and career.

Harris (Sioux Falls Washington) was chosen to the 1989 All-North Central Conference team at wide receiver. In 1989 he led Augustana in receiving with 45 receptions for 652 yards and five touchdowns. He led the team in punt returns, was third in kickoff returns, third in scoring, and second in all-purpose yards. In 1988 he had 27 catches for 342 yards and three touchdowns. He was a starter on Augustana's NCAA playoff teams in 1988 and 1989, and helped the Vikings to an overall record of 17-7 for the two seasons.

Gifford (Balaton, Minn. was the North Central Conference indoor and outdoor 5,000-meter champion in 1999. During her career she earned NCAA All-America recognition for the indoor 3,000-and the indoor 5,000. She was the NCC cross country champion in 1998 and 1999 and was a two-time NCAA cross country All-America. In the fall of 1998 she won the NCC cross country title; in the winter of 1999 she won the NCC indoor 5,000 championship; in the spring of 1999 she set a track record by winning the NCC outdoor 5,000 in 17:34.37.

In addition to the Hall of Fame inductees, Augustana will honor Don and Donna Karras and Lee Goldammer (Milt and Clara Harvey Award), Jim Hoyme (Lefty Olson Award), and Melissa Olson Guebert (Ole Odney Award).

The Karras' and Goldammer were major donors to the construction of Augustana's new baseball facility, Karras Park Home of Ronken Field. With its infield turf, press box, grandstand, and lights, the facility is among the finest in NCAA Division II. The Harvey Award recognizes outstanding contributions of time, service, and financial support to Augustana Athletics.

Guebert, who is the career scoring leader for Augustana's women's basketball team, coached Eastview High School to Minnesota's Class 4A girls' basketball championship in 2014. The Odney Award salutes significant achievement by an Augustana graduate in coaching, athletic administration, recreation, or youth athletic work.

Hoyme graduated from Augustana in 1978 and is a co-owner of OSI Physical Therapy. OSI was founded in1980. It is an out-patient physical and occupational therapy practice in the east metro area of St. Paul, Minn. with10 clinics and an on-site location at 3M Corporation.  The Olson Award honors individuals for lifetime service or achievement to Augustana athletics.


Courtesy: Augustana Tim Evans

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