Jack Baly and basketball were linked for more than 50 years in Delaware, first as a player, then as a school coach and finally as a basketball official. Baly came from Union, NJ, to play under coach Irv Wisniewski (DSMHOF 2006) at the University of Delaware from 1958-to-1961. His senior season, Baly captained the Blue Hens and was their leading scorer (17 ppg). Some 50-years later – as of the 2011-12 season – Baly is still among Delaware's top 50 all-time career scorers. Baly made the decision to make the state his home, coached both high school and junior high basketball, and was a successful head golf coach at Concord High for 16-years where he also served for a time as the Raiders athletics director. Baly, however, is probably best known as one of Delaware's most respected basketball officials – for more than 45-years. Baly was a member of Wilmington-based IAABO Board #11 from 1963 to 2009. During his career he was selected to officiate eight state championship games. But, Baly served Board #11 in many other ways: rules committee interpreter, executive committee, vice-president, workshop committee chair, membership, ratings committee, etc. Baly founded the Board #11 mentoring program and assisted in recruiting and training new officials. Baly also served as a volunteer official for a number of charity events like the Delaware Special Olympics, the Diamond State Girls Classic and the Delaware All-Star games. He received a gold watch and lifetime membership on his retirement from active officiating.
Coaching Salesianum to 13 state cross-country championships in 15 years, Father Beattie had the most consistent run of success of any Delaware high school coach in any sport. He also coached Salesianum to four straight track championships, 1971-74, before stepping back to an assistant's role, coaching hurdles, distances and relays – technique events where coaching is crucial – where the Sals had 17 individual and 14 relay state champions in his 17 years. Before Father Beattie began coaching in 1966-67, the school had no success in track or cross-country, never finishing among the top three teams in either sport. By 1969, Salesianum began a run of cross-country dominance that prevailed over a decade and a half, interrupted just twice through 1983-84. With six state champions and 69 first, second or third team all-staters, the Sals comprised over one-fifth of the statewide All-State list. Yet, Salesianum could win without first-tier runners. Two title teams had no members on the seven-man All-State team. Three others only had one first-team All-Stater. In 1984, Father Beattie moved to Fort Myers, Florida, to help the Oblates establish a new school, Bishop Verot, where his teams won five district championships in eight years. Father Beattie's advocacy secured many advances in both sports. Instrumental in creating the Brandywine Creek State Park course, he began Delaware's oldest cross-country festival in 1974, the Salesinaum Invitational. In 1994, he was in the first class inducted into the Delaware Track and Field Hall of Fame.
Mike Clark earned the nickname “Iron Mike” through his dedication, competitive spirit and excellence in triathlons, marathon running and cycling. His resume includes four invitation-only Boston Marathons and participation in two Iron Man World Championships in Hawaii, in which the world’s best triathletes compete. After graduating from Penn State, he discovered his passion, which he called ‘love of the run’. He returned to Delaware and began three decades of competitive races ranging from five kilometers to marathon distances of 26.2 miles. He finished more than 24 marathons - many in less than 3 hours - the time standard for serious competitive runners. Mike qualified for the Hawaii Iron Man event, which consists of a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike race and a 26.2-mile run, in 1984 and again in 2007. Clark also competed in the Panama City Full Iron Man and the Colombia Triathlon just to name a few. He was recognized as a Triathlon All-American in 2007; he had received honorable mention for this same award in 2005. He was Delaware’s representative in the Best of U.S. Triathlon in 2005, winning the Delaware State Triathlon Championship to qualify. Clark’s zeal for running and the triathlon inspired countless athletes and young people, such as those he worked with during his 27-year career with the Boys and Girls Clubs of Delaware. He inaugurated the Queenstown Triathlon to fund sports programs for underprivileged youngsters. The Mike Clark Legacy Foundation was established after his passing in 2008 to encourage physical fitness and health education of Delaware’s youth.
Terri Dendy dominated the quarter-mile at all levels, as a three-time state champion at Concord High School, All-American at George Mason University and member of the 1988 U.S. Olympic team. At Concord, Dendy was the state’s overall champion at the 400 three times, and once at 200 meters, wining six Division One titles overall, and lowered the state 400 record by over two seconds to 55.9 seconds. She won six New Castle County titles. At George Mason, she became a six-time All-American and won the NCAA indoor 400-meter title in 1988. She won an outdoor national title as a freshman in 1984, leading off the Patriots’ 4 x 400 champions (where she was joined by Padua graduate Peggy McVey). She set five school records, at 300 meters (38.77), 400 meters (52.57), 500 meters (1:11.45) and outdoors 400 meters (51.45). She was on the U.S. team that captured the mile relay at the 1988 Seoul Olympics as her career continued to ascend after graduation. Dendy was fourth in the 200 meters (in a 23.75 personal best) at the 1989 IAAF world indoor championships, and earned a gold medal on the 4 x 400 relay at the 1993 World Championships. She recovered from knee surgery to win the open 400 meters at the 1996 Colgate Women’s Games. She began her coaching career as an assistant to Jim Fischer at the University of Delaware and is now athletic director at Northwestern High School, Hyattsville, Md.
Over 30 years as track and cross country coach at the University of Delaware, Jim Fischer has guided more than 100 athletes to individual championships, helped countless others to superior college achievement, and broadened access to the sport throughout Delaware and elsewhere. Since becoming the Blue Hens coach in 1982, Fisher has been named conference coach of the year five times. One-hundred nineteen of his athletes have won individual conference championships. His indoor teams were undefeated from 1987 to 1991, and have an overall record of 121-36-1. Five of his teams have won conference titles; another 12 finished second. Many of those champions were not high school stars, but blossomed under his mentoring.
A nationally-recognized leader in the sport, he has been president of the NCAA Division I Cross Country Coaches Association and coached the East team at the 1991 Olympic Festival. He has been a goodwill ambassador and clinician in Honduras, North Yemen, Egypt and China. He has been a board member of USA Track & Field’s High Performance Division and Mid Atlantic Association. As an assistant professor of physical education, he has instructed and coached many of the state’s track coaches.
On his own time, he has trained thousands of Delaware adults in a Tuesday Night Group that he founded and has operated for the benefit of the community for many years. He has served on the board of directors for Girls on the Run, and been an adviser to the Leukemia Society and Special Olympics Delaware. He founded the Delaware Track and Field Hall of Fame in 1994, and remains its president.
An integration pioneer, Albert Horne attended Bridgeville High in 1965 rather than all black Jason High, where he had been the first freshman ever to start in boys’ varsity basketball. In football and basketball Bridgeville compiled an overall 53-4 record during Horne’s junior and senior years. Over those two seasons the football teams went undefeated and the basketball team lost only to Conference Champion Milton and to state champions P.S DuPont and Mt. Pleasant. Albert made invaluable contributions in football, but excelled in basketball with a career total of 1,129 points. He averaged 28 points as a senior and more than 30 points in state tournament play where he was the star of the first-two boys’ state tournaments setting four state tournament records. Horne headed the 1st team All-State squad in 1968, selected as Player of the Year in Delaware.
Wesley coach and DSMHOF inductee Jim Wentworth recruited Albert to be the Wolverine's first African-American Player. Wentworth recalls Horne having “the best range on a jump shot of anyone I have ever seen.” Al served as Wesley’s basketball captain in 1970. He then enrolled at Greensboro College, was among the school’s first African-American players, and an All-Dixie Conference pick.
Al passed away in 1992 at the age of 43. In 2010 he was inducted into the Delaware Interscholastic Basketball Coaches Association’s Delaware Basketball Hall of Fame. In April of 2011, Horne was again honored when he was inducted into the Delaware Afro-American Sports Hall of Fame
Delaware native Al Laramore was an outstanding multi-sport athlete at Caesar Rodney High School and Wesley College, and later made history in Maryland as the only head coach ever to win state high school championships in three different sports. At CR, Al won 15 varsity letters in four sports. As a junior, he was second team All-State tackle and first team All-State as a senior. In basketball, Laramore played guard, and was a first baseman and catcher for the CR baseball team. In track, Al threw the shot put, discus and javelin. At Wesley, Laramore was a two-way starter at tackle. He later started for West Virginia Wesleyan University at defensive tackle.
Al’s coaching career began in 1963. He was hired as head baseball and basketball coach at Annapolis High School (Md) and served as a football assistant, becoming head football coach two years later. Annapolis won the 1978 state football championship with a 12-0 mark. Laramore’s career football record is 156-67-2. His .693 winning percentage is the best ever in Anne Arundel County. One of his outstanding players was Bill Belichick, now head coach of the New England Patriots, who admires Laramore for teaching players the importance of commitment, hard work, discipline and organization.
Al is an inductee of the Maryland Football Coaches Hall of Fame and the Anne Arundel County Sports Hall of Fame. The Annapolis High School football stadium is named in his honor. Al’s Annapolis basketball squad won the Maryland 1-AA prep championship in 1974. His lacrosse teams won state titles in 1984, 1985 and 1987.
To say that Lori Van Sickle is a dynamic, multi-talented athlete would be an understatement. Lori's diverse athletic talents were obvious early, a star in field hockey, basketball and field hockey at Springer Junior High School. At Brandywine High School Lori earned nine-varsity letters, the maximum, while achieving All-State honors in softball, basketball and, her fourth sport, volleyball. Lori earned a scholarship to Ohio University, one of only two OU athletic scholarships provided at that time for softball. Playing third base, she led the team in fielding percentage in her freshman and sophomore years. Lori then transferred to the University of Delaware where she played infield and earned two letters.
At age 21, Lori took up her fifth sport – golf – and turned professional just five years later. At age 30, she was named head pro at the DuPont Country Club – the first woman to hold that position – and, at that time, the only female head golf pro at any LPGA Tour site in the country. In 1995, Van Sickle was selected from among 65 applicants as Director of Golf at DuPont. In 2000, Lori appeared on NBC’s Today Show, providing golf instruction to Katie Couric. In January 2001 she became the first Certified Master Professional in the PGA of America, an organization composed of 25,000 member pros. In both 2002 and 2005, Lori received the prestigious Horton Smith Educational Award for the PGA's Philadelphia section in recognition of her teaching skills. In 2006, Van Sickle took over as Director of Golf at Inniscrone Golf Club in Avondale, Pennsylvania. Her latest project was a Haney-like program – the Van Sickle project – and her star pupil wasthen-University of Delaware head football coach KC Keeler.
Lori is a co-founder of the Special Olympics Delaware golf program and serves as a board member.
A successful coach in six sports over four decades at Archmere Academy and Concord High School, John Walsh is believed to be the only person to be named the state’s high school coach of the year in three sports.
His Delaware coaching career began in 1960 when he took over an Archmere football program that had gone 12-60 over the previous nine years. Under Walsh, the Auks went 30-2 over the next four years, 50-14-1 in his eight seasons. He then began the football program at Concord, lifting the new school to a top-five ranking in 1975. He was named coach of the year in 1960. On returning to Archmere in 1976, he began a volleyball program that became a dynasty, making 20 consecutive appearances in the state tournament with state championships in 1986 and 1987. He was named coach of the year in 1993. In 1981, Walsh inaugurated Archmere’s swimming program. He served as boys swimming coach for five years, and then headed the girls team, where his teams compiled a record of 106-65. He was named coach of the year in 1991 and 1993. John also coached Archmere’s softball team for six years, reaching the state tournament once, and Archmere’s boys track team from 1961-68, coaching state champions in five events, the team going 8-0 in 1961.
He was inducted into the Archmere Hall of Fame in 1995; the school’s sportsmanship award is named for him. He is a member of the Delaware Volleyball Hall of Fame. At the University of Delaware, he was a three-year varsity letterman in both football and baseball, after twice being named all-City at Northeast (Philadelphia) Catholic High School.