Webster University Athletics will place six new inductees into the Webster Athletics Hall of Fame during its 11th Annual Hall of Fame Banquet on Saturday, Feb. 8, 2020. This year's 11th Hall of Fame class which was formally unveiled on Tuesday includes five former Gorlok student-athletes and a longtime Webster Athletics administrator.
This year's inductees are former student-athletes – Greg Murphy (men's golf, 2003-06), Andy Rudroff (men's soccer, 2006-09), Craig Schaefer (baseball, 2008-11), Jenna Steiner Sladek (women's soccer, 2006-09) and Crystal Wilson Wurth (softball, 2001-02), as well as, longtime retired athletics administrator and former Sports Information Director Niel DeVasto (1984-2017).
The 2020 Webster Athletics Hall of Fame Banquet is scheduled for Saturday, Feb. 8 in the Sunnen Lounge at Webster's University Center. The Hall of Fame Class of 2020 will be recognized during halftime of that afternoon's men's basketball game with Principia College, prior to their formal recognition that same evening.
Murphy was a four-year letterman in golf at Webster from 2003-06 and in his time as a Gorlok, he shared the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference Newcomer of the Year in 2003 and was a two-time First-Team All-SLIAC selection in both 2003 and 2005. In addition, he earned Second-Team All-SLIAC honors as senior in 2006. He is one of six three-time All-SLIAC honorees in men's golf in school history. At the time of his graduation in 2006, Murphy's career scoring average of 79.78 was second on the school's all-time list. He was a member of Webster's first-ever SLIAC Championship in men's golf in 2003 and was also a member of the 2005 squad that won its second SLIAC title. In his time as a golfer at Webster, Murphy recorded 15 Top 20 finishes, including winning medalist honors at the Principia Invitational and posting six other Top 5 finishes and had two rounds of par or better, including a career-low round of 71 in the second round of the Illinois Wesleyan Invitational on April 23, 2005. Was a four-year member of the SLIAC All-Academic Team and graduated from Webster in 2006 with a Bachelor of Science degree in accounting and earned his law degree from St. Louis University as he graduated with Magna Cum Laude honors in 2009. He is currently a partner at Carmody MacDonald Law Firm in Clayton, Mo. Murphy, who is a native of Herrin, Ill., is just the second-ever men's golfer to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Rudroff was a four-year letterman in men's soccer from 2006-09 and served as a three-year team captain for the Gorloks and was a four-time First-Team All-SLIAC selection. In addition, he was also named to the SLIAC All-Tournament Team in both 2008 and 2009 and was awarded Webster University's President's Award in 2010. He played midfield, striker, and defender and helped lead the Gorloks to a SLIAC Tournament Championship and a berth in the NCAA Tournament in 2009. Finished his Webster career with 60 points, which is sixth-most in program history and his 20 career goals scored are tied for ninth-most in program history. He tallied six career game-winning goals, including scoring the game-winning goal to beat Greenville in the finals of the 2009 SLIAC Tournament and recorded 20 career assists. The six career game-winning goals are fifth-most all-time, while the 20 career assists are tied for third-most on the school's all-time charts. In the classroom during his time as a student-athlete at Webster, he carried a GPA well above 3.5 and earned his undergraduate degree in 2009 in Human Resources from Webster in just three-and-a-half years. Along with a bachelor's degree, he earned his Master's degree in Education from UMSL in 2012 while he was serving as an assistant coach for UMSL's men's soccer team. Currently, he works as an Account Executive at Provision Data Solutions. With his selection, Rudroff becomes the eighth men's soccer player to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Schaefer, who played both catcher and first base for the Gorloks, was a four-year letterman in baseball at Webster from 2007-11 and was a four-time All-SLIAC selection, including earning Second-Team honors three times and receiving a First-Team nod in 2008. Along with being a First-Team All-SLIAC selection in 2008, he was also an All-Region selection. Holds the school's career record for RBI with 158 and is second in career doubles (44) and total bases (324) and is third in career games started (160), career at-bats (592), career hits (200) and tied for third in career games played (167). He finished his playing career with a batting average of .338 and hit 24 career home runs, which is fourth in the all-time list. He is one of three Gorloks in school history to record 200 career hits and one of five Gorloks in school history to record 40 career doubles. Was a part of four straight regular-season SLIAC championships teams at Webster and was also a part of two SLIAC Tournament title-winning teams in 2010 and 2011 and played in three NCAA Tournaments (2008, 2010, and 2011) with the Gorloks, including helping the 2008 team advance to the regional final for the first time in school history. Helped lead Webster to a 126-54 record and an 87-9 mark in SLIAC play. In 2010, Webster won a then school-record 35 games and posted a 35-11 record. He was also a part of two other 30-plus win teams in 2008 and 2011. Schaefer graduated from Webster in 2011 and earned his Master's degree in Healthcare Administration from Webster and his Doctorate degree in Physical Therapy from Washington University in St. Louis and currently works at ATI Physical Therapy.
Steiner Sladek was a four-year letter winner in women's soccer from 2006-09 and is the first and only player in league history to be named the MVP of the SLIAC Tournament twice. Was a three-year team captain for the Gorloks and is one of only two Gorloks to be three-time selections to the SLIAC All-Tournament Team. In addition, SHE was a four-time All-SLIAC selection, including earning first-team honors in 2006 and 2009 and was an NSCAA All-Region honoree in 2009. She played in 82 matches and made 80 starts in her career and the 80 starts are tied for third on the school's all-time list, while the 82 games played are tied for eighth on the all-time list. Finished her playing career with 28 assists, 16 goals scored and 60 career points. Additionally, she took 173 career shots, which are ninth on the school's all-time list and the 28 career assists are 11th in the program's history. She helped lead Webster to two regular season and three SLIAC Tournament titles, along with three NCAA Tournament appearances, including a second-round appearance in 2006. In the classroom, was a two-time selection to the SLIAC Fall All-Academic Team in 2008 and 2009, an NSCAA Academic All-Region selection in 2008 and was a member of the Dean's List in 2010. She graduated from Webster with a bachelor's degree in Education in 2011, before receiving her master's degree in Educational Administration at Lindenwood University. She currently holds an administrative certificate for K-8 and received her Doctoral degree in Administration in December 2017. Steiner-Sladek spent six years as an elementary school teacher in the Hazelwood School District, two years as an Assistant Principal at the elementary school level in the Meramec Valley R-III School District and is currently the principal at Truman Elementary School in the Meramec Valley R-III School District. She is the ninth Gorlok women's soccer player to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
Crystal Wilson Wurth was a two-year letter winner in softball from 2001-02 and is perhaps the best softball pitcher in school history. In her two seasons at Webster, Wilson Wurth, who transferred to Webster from Lincoln (Ill.) College, was a two-time First-Team All-SLIAC selection and also a two-time Team MVP and was the team's captain in both 2001 and 2002. As a junior in 2001, she went 24-6 in the circle and was a member of Webster's SLIAC Championship team that posted a 37-9 overall record and went 11-1 in league play and advanced to the NCAA Tournament where the Gorloks went 1-2 in regionals held at Central (Iowa) College and then as a senior in 2002, she tallied a 28-7 record in the circle and the 28 were are the most in a season in school history and helped Webster to a repeat SLIAC Championship and another trip to the NCAA Tournament where they posted a 3-2 record at the Illinois Wesleyan Regional. Wilson Wurth currently holds school records for career wins (52), games started (64), complete games (51), shutouts (15) and is second in career appearances (72) and career innings pitched (406), is third all-time in career strikeouts (290) and fourth in career ERA (1.47). In her time with the Gorloks, she compiled a 52-13 record as a pitcher and tossed 51 complete games and also added two saves for a Gorlok softball program that posted a combined record of 69-16 overall and a 23-1 mark in SLIAC play over those two seasons. Along with the career records she holds, Wilson Wurth also holds single-season school marks for wins (28 in 2002), starts (35 in 2002), complete games (30 in 2002), innings pitched (217 in 2002) and her 36 appearances in both 2001 and 2002 are tied for the most in a season in the program's history. In addition, her 169 strikeouts in 2002 are second on the school's single-season list. Was a member of the only Gorlok softball team to finish undefeated in league play as the 2002 team went 12-0 in SLIAC action. In the classroom, was a two-time selection to the SLIAC All-Academic Team. She graduated from Webster in 2002 and earned her Master's degree in Integrative Studies with an emphasis in Social History from the University of Illinois-Springfield in 20103 and is currently an Assistant Professor of Sociology and Freshman Seminar Coordinator at Lincoln College and served as the school's softball coach from 2011 until 2017 when she retired from coaching. Wilson Wurth is the seventh Gorlok softball player to be inducted into the Hall of Fame.
DeVasto could be considered the architect of the Webster Athletics program as he is the person whose vision inspired the birth of Webster Athletics back in the early 1980's during his time working in the Office of Admissions. He served as the school's first athletic director from 1984-88, while also continuing as Webster's Associate Director of Admissions. In DeVasto's four years as Webster's athletic director, he added eight sports: baseball, men's and women's basketball, women's cross country, men's soccer, men's and women's tennis, and volleyball. He was also responsible for transitioning the Webster Athletics program into full-time membership with the NCAA as a Division III level institution and also helped broker a coalition of area colleges to form what is now the St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. Since the Webster Groves campus lacked athletic facilities, DeVasto negotiated time-share agreements with local schools (Nerinx Hall and Webster Groves High School), the city of Webster Groves and St. Louis Soccer Park. In 1996, DeVasto was promoted from admissions counselor to Admissions Director, a position he held until 2009. In his time as the Admissions Director, Webster's incoming freshman class at the Webster Groves campus increased by 44 percent. In 2009, DeVasto would return to the department he helped create to serve as the school's first-ever full-time Sports Information Director, a position he held until he retired from the school in December 2017. DeVasto was awarded Webster's Athletic Department's Student-Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC) Appreciation Award in 2018.
These six Hall of Famers were selected by a committee made up of faculty, coaches, and staff. This year's class will bring the total Hall of Fame membership to 50. The Webster University Athletic Hall of Fame was established in 2010 to honor those who reflect the Department's mission of success in the classroom, the community, and the arena of competition. Former players, coaches, and other individuals who have made significant contributions to the program are eligible for selection.
STORY COURTESY OF WEBSTER UNIVERSITY SPORTS INFORMATION