Hiram College will induct seven individuals, six former student-athletes and one coach/administrator, into the William H. Hollinger Hall of Fame on Saturday, Oct. 23 during Homecoming/Hollinger Hall of Fame weekend, as part of the 2021 inductee class.
Established to honor those who have made a significant contribution to the College’s athletic history, Hiram has inducted more than 300 individuals to the Athletic Hall of Fame since 1964. In June 2006, the College formally named and dedicated the Athletic Hall of Fame to honor William H. Hollinger ’43, a coach and director of Hiram’s athletic program for 33 years.
The 2021 inductees include:
Jennifer (Hlebovy) Church ’07, Volleyball
A four-year letter winner for the Hiram women’s volleyball team, Hlebovy was a member of two NCAA Tournament teams, one North Coast Athletic Conference (NCAC) Regular Season Championship squad and one NCAC Tournament Championship team. The first student-athlete in Hiram women’s volleyball history to earn NCAC Newcomer of the Year and American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) All-Region honors, Hlebovy was the 2003 NCAC Newcomer of the Year and a two-time AVCA All-Great Lakes Region Honorable Mention selection, as well as a two-time All-NCAC selection, earning second-team honors in 2005 and an honorable mention selection in 2006.
For her career, Hlebovy helped the Terriers to a 111-29 record over her four years, and still ranks in the Top 10 in program history in kills, attacks, digs, solo blocks, block assists, total blocks, points, sets and matches played. Hlebovy is one of just 13 players in program history to tally 1,000 career digs, and her 1,502 career digs rank fourth in program history.
Following her graduation from Hiram, Hlebovy earned her master’s degree in educational leadership from the University of South Florida and has since taught in Florida, Indiana and Ohio. Currently, she is the eighth-grade STEM educator at Tiffin Middle School in Tiffin, Ohio.
Ellen Dempsey, Coach and Director of Athletics
Over her 18 years in Hiram Athletics, Dempsey served as both an administrator and coach, helping the women’s volleyball program and the department as a whole reach new heights. Dempsey joined the Terriers in 2001 as the head women’s volleyball coach and quickly turned Hiram women’s volleyball into a powerhouse. Over her 11 years at the helm, Dempsey coached the Terriers to a 267-113 record and a .810 winning percentage in conference play.
Under Dempsey’s tutelage, the Terriers made four NCAA Division III Tournament appearances, won two NCAC regular-season championships, appeared in 11 consecutive NCAC Tournaments, making the
championship match in 10 out of 11 appearances, and won the conference in 2006. A four-time NCAC Coach of the Year herself, Dempsey coached five AVCA All-Americans, 12 AVCA All-Region selections, seven Helen M. Petroskey Award winners, two CoSIDA Academic All-District selections and 40 All-NCAC selections, including four NCAC Player and Newcomers of the Year. And since graduating, four of her athletes were named to the NCAC Women’s Volleyball All-Decade Team.
While serving as head coach, Dempsey also served as a Division III administrator, first as an assistant athletic director and senior woman administrator in 2004, before being promoted to associate athletic director and eventually director of athletics in July 2012. As director of athletics, Dempsey oversaw numerous improvements to multiple facilities, the addition of an integrative exercise science major and the addition of Hiram’s 15th and 16th varsity sports, men’s volleyball and Cheer & STUNT.
Dempsey retired from her role as director of athletics following the 2018-19 academic year, but is still involved with Hiram College and Hiram Athletics, serving as the director of major gifts within the Office of Development and Alumni Relations.
Trevor Henderson ’09, Football
A three-time All-NCAC Honorable Mention selection, Henderson was a four-year starter for the Terriers at the quarterback position, placing himself among the best offensive players in Hiram football program history. Henderson ranks first all-time in pass attempts and completions, second all-time in passing yards and passing yards per game, third in completion percentage and fourth in passing touchdowns. Additionally, Henderson also ranks second all-time in total offensive yards and total touchdowns.
A three-time team captain and two-time team MVP (2007, 08), Henderson’s 2008 season in which he accounted for 2,114 total yards and 17 touchdowns earned him the Donald M. Campbell Award, annually awarded to the outstanding male athlete of the year.
A 2019 inductee into the Armstrong County Sports Hall of Fame, Henderson is currently the sales manager of Hillview Motors Inc. in Westmoreland County, Pa., helping run the day-to-day operations of a Jeep, Chrysler, Dodge Ram dealership. Outside of work, Henderson enjoys golfing and spending time with his family.
Zachary Huggins ’05, Swimming
Huggins, a four-year letter winner and three-year captain for the swim team, held nine school records upon his graduation and still holds six, in the 100m freestyle, the 100m and 200m backstroke, the 200m and 400m individual medley and as a member of the 400m relay team. Upon his graduation, Huggins also held the school records in the 200m and 1,000m freestyle and the 100m butterfly.
A 2003 All-NCAC selection in the 200m backstroke, Huggins’ top times still rank in the top five in program history in 10 different events. Outside of the pool, Huggins was involved with various intramural sports.
Following his graduation from Hiram, Huggins worked at Iten Industries, lived overseas in both Australia and New Zealand, and currently works for Vail Resorts in Breckenridge, Colo.
Lynne Hutchison ’08, Track
A seven-time All-NCAC selection, Hutchinson was a four-year letter winner in both indoor and outdoor track, serving as the team captain, and earning Team MVP honors in 2006, 2007 and 2008. A five-time NCAC Conference Champion and a seven-time All-NCAC honoree, Hutchinson won the indoor 800m
relay and the outdoor 400m relay in 2005, the indoor 55m hurdles and the outdoor 100m hurdles in 2006 and the indoor 55m hurdles in 2008.
During her time at Hiram College, Hutchinson was instrumental in getting the track and field program re-instated and still holds four school records in the 55m and 100m hurdles and the 400m and 800m relay.
Following her graduation from Hiram, Hutchinson taught seventh-grade language arts at Madison Local Schools in Madison, Ohio before transitioning to become an education director for a small museum. Hutchinson then went on to earn her master’s degree in nutrition and dietetics from Kent State University where she was named the most valuable nutrition student of the year and now works for Solon City Schools in Solon, Ohio, as the director of food & nutrition.
Brian Rafferty ’00, Football
A three-time All-American, Rafferty was named a Third-Team All-American by both the Football Gazette and USA III Football following the 1997 season, as well a Football Gazette Preseason Honorable Mention All-American heading into the 1998 season. A four-year letter winner for the football team, Rafferty was also named to the All-Mideast Region Second Team in 1997 as a defensive back and was a Second-Team All-Ohio Athletic Conference (OAC) selection in 1998.
A two-time USA III Magazine DIII and OAC player of the week and a two-time team captain, Rafferty finished his career with 173 tackles and 10 interceptions, as well as a pair of kick-offs and punt-return touchdowns, playing on both sides of the ball his senior year. His 85-yard interception return for a touchdown against Oberlin his sophomore year still stands as one of the longest “pick-sixes” in Hiram football program history.
Since graduating from Hiram, Rafferty has followed in his father’s footsteps as a UPS driver in Girard, Ohio and has also been heavily involved in the Girard community. A first-ballot inductee into the Girard Athletic Hall of Fame in 2006, Rafferty has coached Girard varsity football for the past 16 years, finishing as the Division 4 state runner-up in 2018, and served as the vice president of the Girard Athletic Association.
Stephanie Zunic ’09, Softball
A member of the 2009 NCAA Tournament softball team, Zunic was a four-year letter winner in softball and a three-year letter winner in women’s basketball. On the diamond, Zunic was a three-time All-NCAC selection, a three-time NCAC Athlete of the Week selection and a three-time NCAC All-Tournament Team selection, earning Honorable Mention honors in 2007, and a second-team selection in 2008 and 2009, as well as National Fastpitch Coaches Association (NFCA) Third-Team All-Region honors in 2009.
One of the most prolific shortstops in Hiram softball history, for her career, Zunic ranks first all-time in at-bats, hits, doubles, total bases and assists, second in runs scored and games started, third in batting average, RBI and games played, sixth in slugging percentage and home runs. Zunic’s 445 career assists also still rank first in NCAC history and second in NCAA Division III.
On the hardwood, Zunic was a team captain and a 2007-08 Second-Team All-NCAC selection and still ranks among the best three-point shooters in program history in both three-pointers made and three-point field-goal percentage. Off the field, Zunic was also a four-year member of Hiram’s student-athlete advisory committee.
Currently, Zunic is the marketing manager for Amerimark Interactive in Middleburg Heights, Ohio and is approaching her 10th year with the company.