LEXINGTON, Va. – Washington and Lee University has announced the 26th class to be inducted into its Athletic Hall of Fame in a ceremony the weekend of September 6-7, 2013.
The 2013 class includes former football and baseball player Christian Batcheller ’00, former lacrosse player Matt Dugan ’01, former lacrosse player Eloise Priest Southard ’02, former tennis player Erika Proko Hamilton ’03 and former Athletic Director Mike Walsh.
The class will be formally inducted at the Athletic Hall of Fame dinner on Friday, September 6 and will be recognized at halftime of the Generals’ football game against Franklin & Marshall on Saturday, September 7.
Christian Batcheller ’00 was a three-year letterwinner for both the football and baseball teams. On the gridiron, he twice earned First Team All-ODAC honors as a quarterback, throwing for 6,146 yards and 42 touchdowns over his four seasons. He graduated holding 13 school records, including career passing yards and career total offense (6,383). On the baseball diamond, he was a two-time First Team All-ODAC pick and a First Team All-South Region honoree when he won the ODAC’s triple crown by batting .490 with nine home runs and 45 RBI during his rookie season. Batcheller graduated with 15 school records in baseball, including career batting average (.378), career home runs (23) and career runs scored (93). He was named W&L’s Outstanding First-Year Male Athlete in 1997 and the Pres Brown Outstanding Senior Male Athlete in 2000. He was drafted by the Pittsburgh Pirates following his junior season of baseball and also played professional football in Europe and in the Arena League.
Matt Dugan ’01 was a four-year starter for the lacrosse team, graduating as the program’s all-time leading scorer with 290 points. As a first-year, he set a program rookie record with 56 points, while he also set a school record for season scoring with 87 points as a junior. A four-time All-ODAC honoree and a three-time first team selection, he was named the ODAC Player of the Year following his sophomore season in 1999. Dugan earned Second Team All-America honors that season and was a First Team All-America selection following his junior and senior seasons. He was also named the Division III Attackman of the Year in 2001 when he also competed in the North-South Senior All-Star game and received a tryout for the U.S. National Team. Dugan still holds the ODAC career scoring record and the school’s career goals record (182), and he still ranks fifth all-time with 108 assists. He helped lead the Generals to a 56-8 record, three NCAA Tournament berths and two ODAC titles. Following his senior season, he received the Pres Brown Outstanding Senior Male Athlete Award.
Eloise Priest Southard ’02 was a four-year starter for the lacrosse team, serving as a team captain for her junior and senior seasons. She began her career as a midfielder, finishing her rookie campaign ranked third on the team in scoring with 33 points (23 G, 10 A). Priest Southard then moved to defense, garnering First Team All-ODAC, First Team All-State and First Team All-Region honors each of her final three seasons. As a junior, she helped lead the Generals to the ODAC title as the defense allowed an average of just 6.09 goals per game. She was a First Team All-America selection as a junior and senior, and was honored as the Division III Defender of the Year in 2002. A three-time ODAC All-Tournament Team member, she played in 63 of a possible 64 games during her career, starting every contest in which she played.
Erika Proko Hamilton ’03 was a four-year letterwinner for the tennis team, serving as a team captain for her senior campaign. She was nationally-ranked in both singles and doubles all four seasons and competed in the NCAA Individual Championships every year. Proko Hamilton earned First Team All-America honors six times over the course of her career, and she reached the semifinals of the NCAA Doubles Championship three times, while also advancing to the semifinals of the Singles Championship twice. A four-time First Team All-ODAC honoree and the 2003 ODAC Player of the Year, she completed her career with a 92-20 singles record and a 104-27 doubles mark. Both totals still rank in the Top 4 all-time at W&L. During her four seasons, the Generals went 86-12 overall, winning three ODAC titles and advancing to the NCAA Quarterfinals each season, finishing third in 2002 and as the runner-up in 2003. A three-time CoSIDA Academic All-District selection and a 2002 ITA National Scholar-Athlete, she was presented with the ITA National Arthur Ashe Sportsmanship award as a senior. Later, she received an NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship and was a finalist for the NCAA Woman of the Year. Proko Hamilton also served as the chair of the NCAA Student-Athlete Advisory Committee. She was named the Outstanding First-Year Female Athlete at W&L in 2000 and was the 2003 winner of the Pres Brown Most Outstanding Senior Female Athlete Award. She also received the Marjorie Berkeley Award as the conference’s top female scholar-athlete following her senior season.
Mike Walsh served as the school’s athletic director for 17 years, holding the title from 1989 until 2006. During that time, the Generals’ athletic program flourished, adding three new varsity sports and upgrading or building nine new athletic facilities. Walsh’s additions to the department paid immediate dividends as evidenced by the 103 conference titles W&L claimed during his tenure, 76 more than in the previous 10 years. The Generals won nearly 61 percent of their games during his time, claiming the ODAC’s Commissioner’s Cup as the top program in the conference 10 times in the 12 years it was presented under his watch. Additionally, W&L received 288 All-America citations, while 29 athletes were recognized as CoSIDA Academic All-Americans and 10 received the prestigious NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship. Walsh also served on numerous national committees during his tenure, including the NCAA Restructuring Committee, the NCAA Division III Baseball Committee and he was the chair of the NCAA Division III Membership Committee.
The Washington and Lee University Athletic Hall of Fame was established in 1987 by the W&L Alumni Association. The Hall of Fame was designed to honor and memorialize those individuals who have made outstanding contributions to Washington and Lee athletics and have helped bring recognition, honor, excellence and distinction to the University and its intercollegiate athletic program. Including this year’s honorees, the W&L Athletic Hall of Fame has enshrined 122 former athletes, teams, coaches, and administrators.