Wall of Fame Class of 2012 Inducted in December
The newest members of the Wall of Fame were officially inducted in a ceremony held in the Long Center in December. From left: Mark Beneski '92 (men's basketball), Al Callejas '02 (men's basketball), Judith (Grimaldi) Shapiro '89 (field hockey), Jennifer (Knight) Sifnakis '99 (volleyball), Tom McGill '83 (men's soccer), Meghan Quinlan '02 (women's soccer)
Six former Royal student-athletes are now members of an exclusive club.
In an official ceremony held at the Long Center in December, they were inducted into the athletics department’s Wall of Fame, bringing the Wall’s membership to 226.
Those honored include Mark Beneski ’92 and Al Callejas ’02 from the men’s basketball program; field hockey scoring sensation Judith (Grimaldi) Shapiro ‘89; volleyball standout Jennifer (Knight) Sifnakis ‘99; Tom McGill ’83, a starter on three NCAA Final Four men’s soccer teams; and Meghan Quinlan ’02 of the women’s soccer team.
The Wall of Fame was founded in 1970 to honor former student-athletes, coaches, administrators and those in the community who have been pivotal in the overall development of the university’s athletics program.
Beneski, a native of nearby Peckville, was a dominating front-court player, finishing his career with 1270 points and 744 rebounds. He is still one of only nine players in Scranton history to earn All-Middle Atlantic regional honors by the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) twice. A three-time All-Middle Atlantic Conference selection, he also served as co-captain of the 1992 team, the same year he was named the recipient of the Dickman Award as the team’s most valuable senior.
He led the Royals to an overall record of 80-29, which included two NCAA Tournament appearances and a Middle Atlantic Conference Northern Division Championship under then head coach Bob Bessoir. He and his wife, Mary Catherine, have two children: Michael and Anna Maria.
From nearby Archbald, Callejas thrilled Royal fans with his perimeter shooting ability. As a sophomore, he led NCAA Division III in 3-point field goal shooting, making a remarkable 54 percent of his attempts. He is still the program’s all-time leader in 3-point field goals made (225) and finished his career with 1,372 points.
A three-time All-Freedom Conference selection and 2001 co-recipient of the Dickman Award, he served as team captain his senior year and was a member of the 2000 team that won the Freedom Conference title and advanced to the NCAA Tournament under Bessoir. Al and his wife, Maribeth, have a daughter, Aubrie. He holds a degree in elementary education from the university.
(Grimaldi) Shapiro was a consistent scoring threat, finishing her career with 51 goals and 17 assists for 119 total points, which is still the second most in the field hockey program’s 38-year history. She led the Royals in goals scored and total points twice and tied for the team lead in both categories on another occasion. Her efforts earned her first-team All-Middle Atlantic Conference (MAC) Northwest honors three times, helping the Royals to two MAC Tournament berths and four winning seasons under then head coach Beth Howlett. She also served as team captain of the 1988 team.
A native of Pleasantville, New York, (Grimaldi) Shapiro holds a Bachelor of Science degree in public administration from the university. She and her husband, Russell, have three children: Olivia, Luke, and Samantha.
(Knight) Sifnakis led the volleyball team of then head coach Kristin Maile to 95 victories in four seasons, along with a berth in the 1997 Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) Tournament. She was twice named first-team All-Middle Atlantic/Freedom Conference, earned second-team honors in 1997, and was named the 1999 female co-recipient of the O’Hara Award, which is presented annually to outstanding athlete of the senior class. She still holds the Royal record for highest career hitting percentage (.330) and is ranked in five other all-time categories. In 1998, she set the program’s single-season record for highest attack percentage, hitting .410.
A native of Wethersfield, Conn., (Knight) Sifnakis holds a Bachelor of Science degree in management from the university. She and her husband, Chris, have two children: Alex and Topher.
McGill’s play was crucial to the men’s soccer team’s rise to national prominence under then head coach Steve Klingman. He started on the 1980 and 1981 teams that advanced to the NCAA Championship match only to lose heart-breaking overtime decisions to Babson College and then Glassboro State, now Rowan University, respectively. He tallied Scranton’s goal in the four-overtime loss to Glassboro St. in 1981.
As a senior, he served as team captain as the Royals made another run in the NCAA Tournament, before losing in the semifinals to Bethany College (WVa.), a week after he scored both goals in a 2-1 victory in overtime against Haverford College in the championship match of the Middle Atlantic Conference (MAC) Tournament. He was a key component of three MAC North and overall championship teams, earning first-team All-MAC Northern Division honors twice and All-Mid-Atlantic region by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) once.
A native of Belmar, New Jersey, McGill holds a degree in economics and finance from the university and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree from Pace University. Tom and his wife, Jane, have four children: Holly, Patrick, Thomas, and D’Arcy.
In four seasons as starting goalkeeper, Quinlan locked down the opposition. She established all-time records in leading the women’s soccer program to a record of 69-17-4 (.789), including a Middle Atlantic Conference overall championship (1999), two Freedom Conference titles (2000, 2001), and three NCAA Tournament appearances under then head coach, the late Joe Bochicchio.
As a senior, she recorded nearly 15 shutouts and was voted the Freedom Conference Most Valuable Player (MVP), along with being named All-Middle Atlantic region by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) for the fourth straight year, becoming one of only three players in the program’s 30-year history to earn this recognition four times. She was also named the female recipient of the O’Hara Award.
A native of Glen Rock, New Jersey, Quinlan holds a Bachelor of Science degree in criminal justice from the university.