Back                                      Springfield Sports Hall of Fame 2024 Inductees
            
2024 HALL OF FAME INDUCTEES

 

Henry Felton

 

1980 Southeast High School graduate, left an undeniable mark on the Springfield sports scene. As a fourth-team all-stater, averaging 19.5 points per game, he led the Spartans to their first sectional championship in 1980.  He still stands as the school's second all-time leading scorer with 1,385 points. His impressive career included multiple all-city and all-conference selections, and he even set a school record with 20 rebounds in a game as a 6-2 guard. He was selected as the top player in the Capitol Conference as a senior and played in the IHSA all star game at Bradley, capping an exceptional high school basketball career. Henry also excelled at the collegiate level, notably at Southern Illinois-Edwardsville, where he started as a freshman and averaged 12 points and 5.6 rebounds per game and was named the team’s MVP after his sophomore year. He would go on to play with distinction at Quincy University, graduating in 1985 with a degree in Business Administration.

 

 

 

 Mike Garcia

 

  1977 graduate of Elmhurst York High School, achieved remarkable success as Lanphier's boys track and cross country coach for 31 years. Under his leadership, Lanphier earned three consecutive third-place finishes starting in 2007 at the Class AA/2A boys state track meets, marking the highest finishes in school history. Mike coached numerous individual and relay state champions, with standout athletes like Major Clay, Kevin Farley, T.J. Jumper and Justin Smith. His teams claimed nine sectional titles between 1992 and 2017, 18 consecutive City Meet titles from 1991 to 2008, and 10 Central State Eight Conference championships. Teams led by Garcia finished in the top 10 at the state track meet five times, a remarkable accomplishment in school history. For his outstanding contributions, Mike was inducted into the Illinois Track and Cross Country Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 2009.



 

Andrew Gardner

 

 1989 Lanphier graduate and standout wrestler, is an iconic figure in the Springfield wrestling arena. He is the only state champion in Lanphier wrestling history, winning the Class AA crown at 105 pounds as a junior in 1988. He also became the second individual in school history to capture a state championship. Andrew's wrestling career included remarkable achievements such as finishing among the top three placers at state three times, winning 151 out of 159 matches during his prep career, and earning recognition from Wrestling USA magazine in 1989 as part of the high school All-America team. He continued his success at the collegiate level and eventually became the first wrestling coach at Sacred Heart-Griffin in 1996. Andrew is currently a teacher, following in his mother’s footsteps in the classroom, and wrestling coach at Southeast, following his dad and uncle on the mat.

 

 

 

Katie Gilman McCulley

 

2000 Lutheran High School graduate, demonstrated exceptional talent in both basketball and volleyball. She lettered three years in volleyball as a middle hitter and amassed over 1,000 kills in her career. Her achievements included being named all-conference first team, State Journal-Register Class A volleyball honorary captain, and Crusader Classic MVP as a senior. In basketball, Katie earned all-conference first team honors throughout her high school career and achieved entry into the 1,000-point club for Lutheran High. Her remarkable journey continued at NCAA Division II Lewis University, where she earned a volleyball scholarship and would go on to become one of the all-time greats in Lewis women's volleyball history. She earned numerous accolades, including All-GLVC first-team honors, named Lewis' most valuable player in each of her four seasons, and the AVCA's Great Lakes Region Freshman of the Year in 2000. She finished her career as the program leader in kills, attack attempts, hitting percentage, total blocks and points scored and still holds high record ranks. Katie was inducted into the Lewis Hall of Fame in 2019. In 2007, she was hired as a physical education and health teacher at Lutheran High, as well as a volleyball coach. Eventually, she would serve as the athletic director for her alma mater. She was the IHSA Coach of the Year in 2011, the only coach from the Springfield area ever to receive that award.





Andre Iguodala



  2002 Lanphier graduate and basketball standout, showcased extraordinary talent on the court. His senior year was marked by impressive averages of 23.5 points, 7.8 rebounds, and 4.1 assists per game, leading Lanphier to a second-place finish at the Class AA State Tournament. He earned recognition as a top candidate for Mr. Basketball in Illinois, received the Chicago Sun-Times Player of the Year award, and was a second-team Parade All-American. In the summer between his junior and senior seasons in high school, Iguodala led his team to the AAU national championships, and he was named MVP.  Andre's basketball journey continued with a scholarship to the University of Arizona, where he made the Pacific-10 Conference All-Freshman team in 2003 and the All-Pac-10 first team as a sophomore. After his sophomore season, he entered the NBA Draft, was selected ninth overall by the Philadelphia 76ers, and enjoyed a stellar 19-year career in the NBA. Highlights of his career include four NBA Finals titles, an NBA Finals MVP award in 2015, and participation in the 2012 NBA All-Star Game. Andre also made significant contributions to the U.S. FIBA World Tournament team and the 2012 U.S. gold medal-winning Olympic team. Andre served as first vice president of the NBA Players Association and previously was vice-president of the NBA Players Association Executive Committee.



Ken Leonard

 

 

 Chenoa High School graduate, holds the distinction of being the winningest high school football coach in state history. His remarkable coaching career at Griffin/Sacred Heart-Griffin spanned 43 seasons, during which he won a state-record 419 games at Gridley and Griffin/Sacred Heart-Griffin. Ken's teams secured six state championships, finished as runners-up four times and established a legacy of excellence with a record of 419-81. In recognition of his outstanding achievements, he was honored as the National High School Football Coach of the Year by USA Today and was named the National High School Coach of the Year by two national high school coaches associations—the National Federation of State High School Associations and the National High School Coaches Association. Leonard was also inducted into Sports Faith International Hall of Fame in 2023.







Danny McCain




 
Born in Springfield and a Sacred Heart-Griffin High School attendee, is a long-time tennis legacy and bestselling author. In 1995, Danny would be the first and only tennis player in the city's history to win a state championship in singles as a freshman at SHG. His remarkable victory in singles was followed by another state crown in Florida. Danny would also earn the golden ball and silver ball at the United States Tennis Association's Indoor Championship and National Clay Courts, respectively. He was also titled at the Florida Open and Copper Bowl during his junior career. Danny would go on to secure a full scholarship to the University of Michigan, where he garnered All-Big Ten honors in both singles and doubles, achieving a ranking as high as No. 36 in the Intercollegiate Tennis Association rankings. As an assistant, Danny's contributions to the sport continued with the Illinois State Redbirds back-to-back Missouri Valley Conference titles and NCAA Tournament appearances. Danny would be named the U.S. Tennis Association's Virginia Teaching Pro of the Year in 2012 and Professional Tennis Registry's Mid-Atlantic Teaching Pro of the Year in 2013.



 

Jeff Mory

 

1983 Springfield High graduate and standout golfer with many extraordinary achievements to his name. As a senior in 1982, he captured the Class AA state championship, becoming the third and last boys player in the city's history to win a state title. Jeff's victory came with a four-stroke lead and showcased his remarkable skills on the golf course. His dedication to the sport began at a young age, and he honed his talent while playing at Pasfield Golf Course. Jeff’s legacy includes qualifying for state as a freshman, placing fourth at state as a sophomore, and 15th at state as a junior. Jeff continued his golf career at the University of Kentucky and later at Northern Illinois University, gaining recognition as an accomplished collegiate golfer. Beyond his playing days, Jeff's coaching career saw notable success, including guiding Northwestern University to its first NCAA Tournament in 27 years, being named the Big Ten Coach of the Year, and coaching Big Ten individual champions Scott Rowe (1995) and Jonathan Loosemore (1996). He has been director of golf at Conway Farms Golf Club in Lake Forest since 1997 and co-founded the Wildcat Golf Academy in 2011. He was ranked as the 11th-best instructor in Illinois in 2016 by Golf Digest.

 

 





Tim Richardson




 1982 Lanphier High School graduate, achieved remarkable athletic success with nine varsity letters in football, track, wrestling, and band. A standout running back and safety, he earned All-Capital Conference, All-City, and all-state honors in 1981, rushing for 1,117 yards during his senior season and amassing a total of 1,930 career rushing yards. Following his senior year, he was awarded Offensive MVP in the East/West Shriners Game. Richardson secured a scholarship to Purdue University, where he played football for two seasons and later transferred to Pacific for the 1985 and 1986 seasons. Richardson was drafted by the New York Giants in the 6th round of the 1987 draft. He would later go on to share his athletic wisdom as a linebackers coach at Southern Illinois University. In addition to his football accolades, Richardson was the National Silver Gloves boxing champion from 1974-77, and in 1992 he won the Illinois Golden Gloves heavyweight boxing championship. Eventually, Richardson would win the North Carolina Toughman heavyweight boxing championship.

 

 
TEAM

 

1995 Sacred Heart-Griffin Girls Golf team



Etched their names in history as trailblazers. Under the guidance of first-year coach and teacher Joe Pecaut, they secured their place in glory by triumphing at the Illinois State Golf Course in Normal. This remarkable achievement marked SHG's first-ever girls' team state championship. In a nail-biting finish, they clinched the title by a single shot over Decatur Eisenhower. The team's success was a testament to their balanced play, led by Heather Buraski (tied for 17th) and Lisa Stieren (tied for 19th), with valuable contributions from Sarah Graham, Tricia Barry, Beth Mohr, and future all-stater Kelly Anders. This remarkable team had consistently qualified for the state tournament, winning regional and sectional championships and emerging victorious in the challenging 19-school Blazer Classic at Lincoln Greens. Their regular season dominance with a 14-1 record, suffering only a narrow loss to Ramsey, showcased their continued commitment to excellence. Their championship experience continued to bear fruit in the following years, with Graham and Barry excelling at state, and Anders achieving a runner-up finish in 1998, setting a school record. The team also boasted a Women's City Tournament champion in Buraski, who claimed top honors in 1993. This team is making history again, becoming only the second girls' team to enter the Springfield Sports Hall of Fame, alongside the 1973 Southeast girls track squad.

Receiving medals at the ISU Golf Course:  Kelly Anders, Beth Mohr, Tricia Barry, Sarah Graham, Lisa Stieren, Heather Buraski and Coach Joe Pecaut

 

 



FRIENDS OF SPORT

 

 

Jim Flynn

 

  A proud 1962 graduate of Griffin High School and a 1966 alumnus of the University of Illinois, left a lasting mark on the world of high school sports administration. His illustrious career spanned almost 31 years with the Illinois High School Association (IHSA), making him the second-longest tenured administrator in its history. Flynn pioneered roles focused on sports information, public relations, and marketing, introducing systems and strategies now commonplace in state association offices nationwide. His responsibilities encompassed various sports, including baseball, volleyball, softball, football, basketball, and wrestling. Flynn's innovative spirit involved him in various events like the March Madness Experience, 3-point shooting, and slam-dunk contests, as well as organizing the IHSA Sports Report Radio Network. In his early career in sports journalism, Flynn would work at The State Journal-Register and as sports editor of The Chimes at Griffin. He would use his professional skills to serve as an editor, writer, and contributor to key publications and videos in the high school sports realm, including editor for Jim Enright's book March Madness: The Story of High School Basketball in Illinois and scripting March Madness: The Official Video History of the IHSA Basketball Tournament. Flynn's legacy was further honored with his induction into the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 1996, highlighting his remarkable contributions to the world of sports.

 

 

 

 

Cindy Luton

 

     A pioneering figure in girls' sports, played a pivotal role in ushering in a new era of athletic opportunities for young women. Beginning her teaching career at Lanphier High School in 1968, Cindy dedicated herself to shaping the sports landscape for female athletes. With the passage of Title IX in 1972, she led the charge in forming and coaching various sports for girls, including basketball, volleyball, softball, and field hockey. Facing challenges like limited practice time and minimal coaching compensation, Cindy persevered, driven by the girls' passion for playing. Over her 33-year tenure, she guided Lanphier's girls to numerous victories, city tournament wins, a near miss of the Softball State Tournament, and serving on the ISHA field hockey advisory committee.  In addition, two of her former players were among the first women to receive athletic scholarships at Illinois State University.  Her dedication and impact earned her the admiration of both faculty and students alike.

 

 

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Mark Scheffler

 

1969 graduate of Lanphier High School and a 1973 graduate of Culver-Stockton College, has played a pivotal role in the Springfield sports community. During his 35-year career in District 186, he wore many hats, serving as a teacher, assistant principal, and athletic director while coaching an impressive 11 different sports at Grant Middle School and Lanphier High. Notably, Scheffler achieved unparalleled success in Lanphier's athletic history, securing 177 victories in 10 seasons as Lanphier’s volleyball coach and being Lanphier’s third-winningest coach for girls' basketball. Scheffler's dedication extended to track and field officiating, serving as head timer and head judge at the finish line for nearly two decades and earning him the nickname "Accu-Scheff" for his precision in timing events. He concluded his coaching career as a volunteer assistant for girls' track and field at Springfield High. Beyond coaching, Scheffler was a standout athlete in his own right, excelling in basketball and baseball during his high school days. His enduring passion for sports and commitment to education has cemented his legacy in the Springfield sporting history.

 


 
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