Collingswood High School Athletic Hall of Fame


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Hall of Fame Member Bios 1997

View: Alphabetical List - Members by Induction Class - Biographies

Mary Anne Mackara Morgan more than made up for her short stature with quickness, hustle and determination to become one of Collingswood’s best female athletes ever.  She earned three letters in hockey, two each in basketball and tennis, and was outstanding in all three sports.

In hockey, she was a member of Bea Markwick’s first championship team (1958).  She once scored five goals in a game from her right wing position.  In her senior hockey season, the Colls lost a championship playoff game at Gloucester, but Mary Anne scored all three Panther goals.  She was chosen MVP of that team.

Mary Anne captained the varsity basketball team in 1960-61.  In the spring of her senior year, she led the Collingswood girls’ tennis team to its first and only championship.  Her classmates voted her the Outstanding Female Athlete during all four years in high school.

A talented artist as well as athlete, Mary Anne earned a B.F.A. from Temple University’s Tyler School of Art and an M.Ed. from Rutgers University.  She has been a teacher and coach at Sterling High School for many years and now faces Collingswood teams as a friendly rival.

The world knew Michael Landon as a gifted television actor, producer, director and writer whose career was still flourishing when his life was cut short by cancer.
But that career had its start when a skinny kid named Eugene Orowitz attended Collingswood High School in the early 1950’s. He was a track standout for the Panthers and won the state javelin title in 1954. Orowitz’ ability to throw the javelin earned him a college scholarship that took him to Southern California and started him on the road to fame in the entertainment realm.
After appearing in the unforgettable film called “I Was A Teenage Werewolf”, the young man now known as Michael Landon was tapped for the role of Little Joe Cartwright in the legendary TV series “Bonanza.” While acting in that role for 14 years, Landon also demonstrated his talents as a writer and director.
He went on to produce, direct and star in the famed “Little House on the Prairie” series, in which his reputation grew as a spokesman for traditional family values. Landon later wrote, produced, directed and starred in the “Highway to Heaven” TV series.
Along the way, he produced several television specials, including “Sam’s Son”. A semi-autobiographical story of his years growing up in Collingswood.

Neil Thompson was originally hired to serve as freshman coach in basketball, football and baseball. He immediately was recognized as a superlative teacher of young athletes. He soon became head coach in basketball and baseball and coached both with great success.
His court teams won nearly 200 games and were consistent contenders for league and group honors. In 1968 he directed his Panthers into the state semifinals. It was one of two South Jersey crowns he annexed and he also captured two Colonial Conference titles.
Few coaches could out-work Thompson who believed that attention to detail and constant repetition was the key to success. He was recognized by his peers as one of the finest coaches of his era.

In the long history of Collingswood athletics, Buddy Robertson is universally accepted as the No. 1 fan. He is also the father of Jackie, an outstanding basketball player for the Colls. His grandsons, Jack and Jimmy were both Panther standouts. Jim, an outstanding wrestler, is a member of the school’s Hall of Fame.
Known as the “Chiclet Man”, Buddy, for several generations always was on hand to pass out those little morsels to every Colls athlete who took to the playing field. In his youth he played professional basketball for the first team to represent Camden.
When Skeets Irvine came to Collingswood in 1919, one of his first acquaintances was Robertson. The pair remained life-long friends. He was a regular at all athletic banquets, where he passed out trophies and various awards to those who excelled, The dapper little man pacing the sidelines was an inspiration to all.

Furman Sherlock has gone through life with two first names. While working on the Wildwood Beach Patrol, the head lifeguard couldn’t (or wouldn’t) remember Furman, so he tabbed him with the name “Jerry”. He cheerfully answers to either cognomen.
Sherlock was a star back on the unbeaten, untied Collingswood football teams of 1931 and 1932. He also ran leg on the great mile-relay team which captured the Championship of America Race in the Penn Relays.
Following high school, he matriculated at Villanova where he joined his high school teammate Jack Earle in the backfield. It was one of the brightest eras in Villanova gridiron history. He and Earle also ran on the first relay team coached by the fabled Jumbo Elliot.

Few athletes dominated their era in the manner that Frank Donohue controlled the mile-run in the mid 1930’s. During his junior and senior years he never lost a meet to a South Jersey runner.
In 1936, his time of 4:32.3 established a school record which held for 38 years. This mark came in the Camden Suburban League which brought together many of the top performers in the area. He also ran on the first formal cross-country team at Collingswood and was unbeaten for two years.
One of his fondest memories came in 1938, the year Collingswood celebrated its golden anniversary. A big track meet was held in which the nation’s top milers, Glenn Cunningham and Gene Venske, were featured. A student at Temple where he starred as a fast starter, Donohue led at the quarter pole and has a photograph to prove it. He was a student at Temple where he starred as a distance runner.

The All-Group 4 center in 1934, Sink was a gifted two-way player on the South Jersey championship team of 1934. The team went through the regular season unbeaten and untied surrendering but six points the entire year.
That great team finally lost in a state championship game against Bloomfield, 14-7, but Sink was extolled for his outstanding play. He also starred in baseball as both a pitcher and hard-hitting first baseman.
John had seen extensive service in both sports the previous year when he had been a teammate of his brother, Charlie, a Collingswood Hall of Famer.

The late 1930’s was a golden era for Collingswood High girls athletics. Few contributed more to the success than Dit Bailey. She won four letters in swimming, three in hockey and basketball, and two in tennis.
She not only played, but excelled, in all her activities. For three successive years she was South Jersey diving champion. As a senior, she captained a championship field hockey squad. She was also a three year starter on basketball teams which garnered two league titles.
Dit was selected the top girl athlete in the Class of 1939.

Ginny Mackrell earned nine varsity letters during her days at Collingswood. She was a three-year starter in field hockey, a two-year regular in basketball and swimming, and also served for two years as tennis manager.
She was chosen All-South Jersey in hockey as a senior and had the thrill of playing on squads which captured six league titles. She matriculated at Temple where she played varsity sports and earned a degree in Health and Physical Education.
She returned to Collingswood and had the honor of coaching the 1946 Panther unit to a South Jersey championship. She has been married for a half-century to George Talarico, a Collingswood Hall of Famer.

One of the first of the big men, 6-4 Murphy excelled in football, basketball and track during his days at CHS. A marvelous pass receiver, he starred on the championship football teams of 1945-46. He was named All-Group 4 end as a senior.
Besides being tall, he was an agile inside man for Ben Mark’s basketball squads, contributing as both a scorer and rebounder. He gained his greatest acclaim as a track athlete, consistently throwing the javelin over 200 feet, breaking the records of fellow Hall of Famer Joe Jones, along the way. In the spring of his senior year he was selected to the Look Magazine Scholastic All-America team. He attended Notre Dame, where he ranked with the nation’s top javelin throwers. He later earned his master’s degree at Indiana University.

In its long athletic history, Collingswood has been noted for its pole vaulters. No one, however, dominated the event as did Don Riley in the seasons of 1941 through 1943.
During his three varsity seasons, Riley won six gold medals – three as South Jersey champion and three more as tops in the state. He never lost a dual meets as a scholastic vaulter. His only second place was as a junior when he had to settle for the silver medal in a meet at the University of Delaware.
His first coach was his father, Walter, who had been excellent as a pole vaulter at West Philadelphia High. During Don’s days at Collingswood, his father never missed a meet. In fact he was usually busy with a rake, making sure the soil in the landing pit was made as soft as possible.
Riley’s best vault, 12-10, was never beaten in South Jersey as long as the bamboo pole was in use.

Big George Fuchs was a rugged three-sport Colls athlete of the early 1950’s. He earned three letters each in football, basketball and baseball.
In football, Fuchs played guard as a sophomore, tackle as a junior and end in his senior season, when he made second team All-Group 4 laurels. Coach Cliff Rubicam could count on George in the trenches in his first years after succeeding the legendary Skeets Irvine.
Fuchs was also a basketball warrior and remembers scoring 17 points while playing in the first game ever in the Irvine Gym. But baseball was his best sport. He was a pitcher and shortstop, captaining the team in his senior year. George signed with the Phillies and played two years of minor league ball – back in the days when the Philshad a strong farm system.

Dr. Marjorie (Marge) Seybold Vaughn, Class of 1957, lettered for three years each in field hockey and basketball and captained both teams in her senior year. While individual honors weren’t accorded to girls in those days, she was considered one of South Jersey’s best athletes in both sports and was an inspirational team leader.
A top honor student who also sang in the choir and was a member of the Student Cabinet, Marge also found time to serve as sports editor of the Colls High News.
Marge went on to earn her B.A. from Cornell University and her M.D. from the Temple School of Medicine. She has undertaken post-graduate training from the Mayo Clinic, John Hopkins University and the University of California, San Diego. Her husband, John Vaughn, is also an M.D.
Marge still finds time for basketball and will play on a team representing California in the Senior Olympics at Tucson, AZ, in May of this year.

Rick Thompson, a second generation Colls High athlete, was a key performer in the revival of Panther football fortunes under Coach Dick Ridinger. He was an outstanding two-way back, as well as kick returner. In his senior grid season of 1964, he captained the team and tallied 13 touchdowns, earning second team All-Group 3 honors. He was also chosen Brooks-Irvine “Back of the Week” and the team’s “Outstanding Back”.
Rick also lettered for two years each in wrestling and baseball and also helped those teams achieve winning records. One of those baseball teams was the South Jersey Group 3 champions.
Thompson was a leader in school, as well as on the athletic fields. He was elected class president in his sophomore, junior and senior years. At graduation he received both the Skeets Irvine Memorial Award and the Robert Welch Award.
Rick went on to play football at Franklin & Marshall College and earned a master’s degree at Duke University. After teaching briefly at his high school alma mater, he has been an English teacher and coach at Moorestown High School for the past 24 years.

Stephanie DiSantis LaMaina was an outstanding three sport athlete at Collingswood High, graduating in 1979. The highlight of her athletic career was leading the Panthers to a state championship in lacrosse in her senior year. She was an All-South Jersey first team selection that year and was chosen her team’s MVP.
Stephanie earned nine varsity letters, three each in hockey, basketball and lacrosse. She was a key performer on the hockey team that won the Colonial Conference title in 1979 and received All-Group 3 honorable mention.
In her senior year, Stephanie was featured in “America’s Outstanding Names and Faces for her achievements in athletics. Outstanding as a student, as well as an athlete, she received both the Howard T. Irvine Award and Knight Award at graduation.
She continued her athletic career at Ursinus College and returned to teach and coach at Collingswood High. Stephanie is helping a new generation of Panther girls to carry on the winning tradition in hockey and lacrosse.

Bruce Prutzman is one of Collingswood’s finest track athletes ever and the team MVP in both 1973 and ’74. He set a school record in the 440-yard run and won All-South Jersey honors in his senior year. He also received the Fred Weber Award for winning the 440 in the Camden County Meet in both ’73 and ’74.
Prutzman was an active athlete in all three seasons. In the fall, he played football for two years and then switched to soccer and earned All-South Jersey honors in that sport in his senior year. He participated in winter track all three years and captained that team as well.
Bruce was honored as recipient of the Howard T. Irvine Award and the Varsity Club Trophy in his senior year.
Prutzman went on to run track at the U.S. Naval Academy, where he achieved a personal best of 46.9 in the 400-meter run. He is a retired Navy Lieutenant Commander, having piloted aircraft carriers in the Western Pacific Theater.

Christine Prete Cunningham was a leading player on several championship teams during her years at CHS (1980-83).
She was a three-year letterman in hockey, performing on teams that won a state championship (1980), and two Colonial Conference crowns. In her senior year, she was team MVP, All-Colonial Conference, and an All-South Jersey Group 2 first team selection.
Christine received two varsity letters in basketball and was team MVP and co-captain of the 1982-83 squad. She made it a perfect “trifecta” by being named team MVP of the lacrosse squad in her senior year. More important, she was part of the team that came back from a seven-goal deficit to win the state title by one goal (with seconds remaining) over Moorestown.
Fourth in her class academically, Christine received both the Howard T. Irvine and Knight Award. She went on to captain both the hockey and lacrosse teams at Lafayette College and was a lacrosse All American. She now teaches and coaches lacrosse in Pennsylvania.

The Collingswood High School Athletic Hall of Fame is pleased to recognize the field hockey teams which swept to three successive South Jersey League championships beginning in 1944.
The first two title squads were coached by the late Ruth Woolston, a Colls Hall of Famer herself. The 1946 unit was directed by Toby Dorazio, in her first year of coaching.
It was an era when the South Jersey League was considered the best in South Jersey. Along with Collingswood, powerful teams were regularly produced by Woodbury, Paulsboro, Gloucester and several others.
Coach Woolston’s 1944 crew earned its crown by defeating Woodbury in a playoff contest. The next season Paulsboro was the playoff foe, with the Colls prevailing, 2-1, in a battle played in a rainstorm. In 1946, the Panthers garnered the title without the necessity of a playoff.
A stellar player on the first two squads was the late Bea Markwick, who later would coach Collingswood teams to many victories and become a charter member of the school Hall of Fame.
In 1944, Leona Shields serve as captain and Catherine Kempf was the high scorer. Other senior letter winners were Florence Hutchins, Jean Dupuy, Peggy Sand, Betty Lord and Martha Clayton. Juniors – Pat McCay, Louise Rossell, Dorothy Bond, Neda Trasmondi, Elaine Schneider, Peggy Savidge and Ruth Selm. Diana Onofri lettered as a sophomore.
The captain and leading scorer in 1945 was Louise Rossell, also a Hall of Famer. Other seniors: Dorothy Bond, Barbara Whitney, Helen Dougherty, Barbara Helm, Virginia Douglass, Neda Trasmondi, Pat McCay, Ruth Selm, Elaine Schneider, Peggy Savidge, Lucille McFeeters, Peggy Barron and Diana Onofri were junior letter winners. Renee Ford won hers as a sophomore.
In 1946 Peggy Barron served as captain with Diana Onofri and Lila Lee Cotton leading the score parade. Other seniors were Doris Bayard, Betty West, Martha Light, Patricia Gallimore, Gladys Cain, Elaine Underhill and Mary Jane Chatfield. Juniors were Marian Johnson, Gloria Mahoney, Grace Palmer, Barbara Rapp and Ruth Gilbert. Sophomore letter winner was Olly Onofri.


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