April 17, 2009

NJCAA to Induct Five Hall of Famers

from press release

The National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Men's Lacrosse Coaches Association will induct five new members into its Hall of Fame on Friday, May 8, as part of the NJCAA Men's Invitational Lacrosse Championship Weekend.

Norm Engelke, Tom Malone, Butch Marino, Fredrick Douglass Opie, and Paul Wehrum will be inducted during the NJCAA Tournament Banquet at Nicky and Johnny's Restaurant at the Ramada Inn in New Hartford at 7 p.m.

"We are delighted to pay tribute to such an outstanding group of NJCAA alumni," said Bob Leary, NJCAA Lacrosse Coaches Association President. "The accomplishments of these five men just underscore how vital junior college lacrosse has been for so long."

Norm Engelke was a two-time NJCAA All American at Nassau Community College in 1978 and 1979. In 1981, Engelke was named second team NCAA All American at Cornell. During his time at Cornell, Engelke was also named two-time All Ivy League, Ivy League Player of the Year and a North-South game participant. Engelke played midfield for Team USA's World Championship teams in 1982, 1986 and 1990. He played 14 years of club lacrosse for the Long Island Lacrosse Club of the United States Club Lacrosse Association (USCLA), winning four national championships. He played professionally for the New York Saint in the Major Indoor Lacrosse League (MILL), captaining as a league champion. As an Assistant Coach, Engelke led the Long Island Lizards to two Major League Lacrosse (MLL) titles.

Tom Malone was an NJCAA All American attackman in 1967 and 1968 at Nassau Community College, where he was a two-year captain. In 1968, he was the leading scorer in the country and Nassau's Most Valuable Player. His career continued at the University of Massachusetts where he was named NCAA All American in 1969 and 1970. In 1970, he was named captain at UMass and again led the nation in scoring. Malone was named UMass MVP and played in the North-South and East-West Games that year. During his post collegiate career, Malone led the Long Island Athletic Club to three USCLA national championships between 1971 and 1976. He was named to the USCLA All Star Team in 1972 and 1973.

Butch Marino led Herkimer County Community College to its first Region III Championship and NJCAA National final four appearance in 1984, and repeated the feat in 1985. A midfielder from West Genesee, Marino was a two-time NJCAA All American and was named to the NJCAA All Tournament Team in 1984 and 1985. Marino continued playing lacrosse at the University of Delaware where he was named first team All East Coast Conference in 1986 and 1987. He played in the 1987 North-South All Star game. Marino's post collegiate career led him to the Mount Washington Lacrosse Club. In 11 seasons, Marino was named All USCLA six times ('88, '89, '90, '91, '93, and '94). In 1994, he was selected to play for the World Champion Team USA, earning a gold medal in Manchester, England. Marino also played nine years in the MILL for the Baltimore Thunder and the Pittsburgh Bulls. In 1991 he was chosen for the MILL All Star game, MILL All Pro Team, and was Pittsburgh's MVP.

Fred Opie was a two-time NJCAA All American at Herkimer in 1982 and 1983 playing defense. As a former high school attack man, Opie also scored and assisted on goals as part of the General's man up offense.  Opie continued his collegiate lacrosse career at Syracuse University where he played in two national championship games in 1984 and 1985 in which Syracuse lost to John Hopkins University in both years. He won post-collegiate club championships with the Long Island Hofstra and Maryland Lacrosse Club teams in the USLCA and earning All USCLA honors two times. Opie played professionally for the New York Saint in the Major Indoor Lacrosse League (MILL) from 1989 to 1990 and he  played defense for Team USA's World Championship team in 1990. Opie has served on the Board of Directors of US Lacrosse since 2006.

Paul Wehrum coached the Herkimer Generals Lacrosse team for 24 years. He led HCCC to 21 straight regional championships and eight NJCAA national titles as Herkimer dominated Region III from 1984 through the 1990's. From 1992 through 1996, Wehrum's Herkimer teams won five straight national titles. He was named NJCAA Coach of the Year four times (1985, 1986, 1992, and 1994). Before coming to Herkimer, Wehrum was a three-time NCAA All American and All SUNYAC player at Cortland State from 1970 to 1972. He captained the North team in the North-South game in 1972. He was an Assistant Coach on Cortland's 1973 NCAA Division III National Championship Team.  In 1998, Paul was chosen as an Assistant on the World Champion Team USA. In 2007, he left Herkimer to take over at Union College. In 2008, he was named Liberty League Coach of the Year for leading Union to a program record 12-win season and a 17th ranking in NCAA Division III.

For more information on the NJCAA Lacrosse Championships and the Hall of Fame inductions, visit the tournament website at www.herkimergenerals.com

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