Hiram College and the Terrier men’s basketball team hosted its annual alumni game on Saturday, Jan. 26 prior to the varsity game against Oberlin College at Price Gymnasium.
A total of 22 former basketball players and Hiram alumni returned to campus to take part in two 20-minute periods with representatives of the past four decades of Terrier men’s basketball. Also in attendance was Hiram Hall of Famer and longtime head coach Bill Hollinger.
Hollinger spent 32 seasons as head coach and is the winningest coach in Hiram history with 3-1 career victories. During is tenure, he led his team to a conference championship during the 1975-76 season and made three consecutive NCAA Division III National Tournament appearances (1972-75). Hollinger has been a long-time active member of the Hiram community and supporter of the men’s basketball team and all of the Terrier athletic programs. The court in Price Gymnasium along with the Hiram Hall of Fame is named in his honor.
The players were split into two teams, with “White Team” made up of mostly the “more mature” players, and the “Blue Team” having the majority of the graduates from the last six or eight years.
They played a regulation game of two20 minute halves, sprinkled liberally with “Ben-Gay and oxygen” time-outs. The Blue Team led throughout the contest, but couldn’t quite put the game out of reach. The White Team tied the score at 88-88 with 16 seconds left.Both teams missed opportunities to win in regulation, forcing a two-minute overtime. With time (and energy) running out in overtime, Carlton Dean of the Blue Team drove the length of the floor to put in a lay-up at the buzzer to win the game. The final score was 92-90.
The Blue Team was led by the three-point shooting of A.J. White and Carlton Dean, along with strong guard play from Josh Jakacki, David Wise, Scott Kline and Leonard Wright. Pounding the boards and scoring underneath were forwards Brian Force, T.C. Spencer, Tim Tallbacka, Chris Somrak and Emeka Mbanefo. The White team was led by the three-point shooting of Steve Fleming and Donny Davis, along with strong guard play from Bill Felberg, Randy Moore and John Marhefka. Taking scoring honors for both teams with a strong inside game was Steve Hardaway, with John Lampe, Bill Isco, Chris Peresta, Adrian Lewis and Kevin Derrick all rebounding and scoring consistently from inside the paint.
After the game, teams posed for pictures and enjoyed a buffet lunch.
“It was an all-around good day,” said currentHiram men’s basketball coach and Hiram alum Steve Fleming ’94. “We were glad to have Coach Hollinger be apart of the event and it was nice to see old teammates and share old stories.”