April 9, 2013
NEW ORLEANS - Louisiana Tech women's basketball legends Sonja Hogg and Pam Kelly-Flowers will be among the pioneers who helped build women's basketball through their accomplishments on and off the court that will be honored during halftime of the Women's Final Four championship game in New Orleans Tuesday night.
Among the honorees are administrators, coaches and players who took the game to new heights under the auspices of the Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women, which governed women's collegiate sports before the NCAA began sponsoring championships in 1981-82.
Hogg was the first coach in the history of the storied Lady Techster program and with the help of former LA Tech President F. Jay Taylor and eventually another legendary coach in Leon Barmore built it into one of the top women's basketball programs in the history of the game.
"A lot of those players could be described as once-in-a-lifetime players in their day," Hogg said. "There were some fabulous players. Now, you have exciting players who are bigger, stronger and faster. You don't come across (Baylor center) Brittney Griner but once in a lifetime."
Hogg, who is a member of the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame (Class of 2009) and LA Tech Hall of Fame (Class of 1986), coached the Lady Techsters from the inaugural season of 1974 through 1985 where she amassed an overall record of 307-55 while leading the program to six Final Fours and two national titles, including the 1981 AIAW title.
Kelly-Flowers is still considered arguably the greatest player in the history of the program. The only three-time Kodak All-American in Lady Techster history, Kelly earned the 1982 Wade Trophy as the nation's top player while leading Louisiana Tech to a mark of 143-10 during four seasons, which included two national titles. She is still the program's all-time leading scorer and rebounder.
Anucha Browne, NCAA vice president of women's basketball championships, believes the names of the honorees will resonate with people familiar with the sport. Browne also said a city like New Orleans, which is known for its celebratory nature, is the appropriate place to commemorate their accomplishments.
Honorees to be recognized at the Women's Final Four
Carol Blazejowski (Montclair State) - Led the nation in scoring at 33.5 points per game in 1976-77 and 38.6 points in 1977-78.
Debbie Brock (Delta State) - Starting point guard for Delta State teams that won AIAW national titles in 1975, 1976 and 1977.
Denise Curry (UCLA) - Set 14 school records, including being the Bruins' career leading scorer (3,198) and rebounder (1,310).
Ann Meyers Drysdale (UCLA) - First female to receive a basketball athletics scholarship at UCLA and recorded the first quadruple-double in Division I basketball with 20 points, 14 rebounds, 10 assists and 10 steals during a game in her senior season of 1977-78.
Suzie Snider Eppers (Baylor) - Holds the school record for points 3,861 and rebounds 2,176.
Pamela Kelly-Flowers (Louisiana Tech) - Led the program to two AIAW national titles and was the Wade Trophy (national player of the year) recipient in 1982.
Lusia Harris (Delta State) - Averaged 25.9 points and 14.5 rebounds per game while leading Delta State to three straight AIAW national titles (1975-77).
Nancy Lieberman (Old Dominion) - First two-time winner of the Wade Trophy, finishing her career with 2,430 points, 1,167 rebounds, 961 assists and 562 steals.
Pearl Moore (Francis Marion) - Scored 4,061 points in her career and had a 60-point game during her junior season.
Lynette Woodard (Kansas) - Scored 3,649 career points and went on to become the first female member of the Harlem Globetrotters.
Theresa Shank Grentz - Won AIAW national titles as a player at Immaculata and as a coach at Rutgers; sported a career coaching record of 671-309.
Marianne Crawford Stanley - First person to win AIAW national titles as a player at Immaculata and as a coach at Old Dominion; recruited Nancy Lieberman and Ann Donovan to Old Dominion and Lisa Leslie to Southern California. Head coaches
Carol Eckman - Considered the "mother of collegiate women's basketball" for establishing the first women's national championship in 1969; coached West Chester from 1969-72.
Lily Margaret Wade - The namesake of the Wade Trophy guided Delta State to three straight national titles (1975-77).
Sonja Hogg - Coached Louisiana Tech to a 34-0 record en route to the 1981 AIAW championship; also coached the Lady Techsters to the first NCAA championship in 1982.
Billie Moore - First women's coach to win national titles at two schools (Cal State Fullerton in 1970 and UCLA in 1978).
Cathy Rush - Won three consecutive AIAW titles (1972-74) and was 149-15 as Immaculata's coach.
Christine Grant - Founding member of the AIAW; Iowa's first women's athletics director in 1973; testified before Congress several times on behalf of gender equity.
Judie Holland - Selected to start UCLA's women's athletics program after the passage of Title IX; developed women's athletics at UCLA into a multi-million dollar enterprise.
Donna Lopiano - Past president of the AIAW who as women's AD at Texas grew the budget there from $57,000 in 1975 to nearly $3 million by 1987.
Judy Sweet - In 1975 became the first female athletics director to lead a combined men's and women's athletics department at UC San Diego; first female to serve as president of the NCAA (1991-93).
Charlotte West - Former president of AIAW who worked 42 years at Southern Illinois as a coach, instructor, professor and administrator; consultant for the Department of Health, Education and Welfare during the 1970s after Title IX.