Nov. 8, 2013
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. --The 13th group of inductees was formally welcomed into the Tennessee Lady Volunteer Hall of Fame Friday night in a private ceremony held in front of family, friends and UT Athletics administrators at the Knoxville Hilton downtown.
"These women and their accomplishments are worthy of this special recognition," UT Vice Chancellor and Director of Athletics Dave Hart said. "Two members of this year's class are Olympic medalists; all four have earned All-America honors and their addition to this prestigious group of women is a testament to our history in women's athletics."
The four inductees in the Class of 2013 represent five different sports. The honorees are Valerie Bertrand Bachmann (cross country/track & field), Vilmarie Castellvi (tennis), Tamika Catchings (basketball) and Rhian Wilkinson(soccer). Athletes are eligible for inclusion 10 years after they have graduated from the University, while administrators may be admitted to the Lady Vol Hall of Fame five years following their last service to UT.
In addition to Friday night's enshrinement activities, the inductees will be introduced during an on-field presentation at the Tennessee versus Auburn football game at Neyland Stadium on Saturday afternoon.
Throughout the 37-year history of Lady Vol student-athletes, 1,947 women have donned the Orange and White Tennessee uniform. With the addition of the four individuals in the 2013 class of the Lady Vol Hall of Fame, membership now has reached 74 in this very elite Hall, including 65 former UT student-athletes.
THE 2013 INDUCTEES
VALERIE BERTRAND BACHMANN (CROSS COUNTRY/TRACK & FIELD)
A member of the cross country and track & field teams from 1986-90, Valerie Bertrand Bachmann teamed with fellow Lady Vol Hall of Famers Jasmin Jones and Patty Wiegand to give coach Missy Kane's Lady Vol cross country team a potent top-three scoring attack that enabled the program to make great strides in four seasons. After being a part of a squad that finished sixth at the SEC meet in 1986 and was unable to qualify for the NCAA District or NCAA Championship meets, Bertrand Bachmann and company built a program that finished second at the league meet and sixth nationally in 1989. She earned All-SEC and All-America honors that season for placements of ninth and 33rd, respectively, at the league and national meets. On the oval, Bertrand Bachmann helped Tennessee to five top-10 NCAA finishes and six top-three SEC outcomes, including an NCAA Indoor team runner-up effort in 1987 and a sixth-place result outdoors in 1990. She won the SEC Indoor title in the 800 meters as a senior, ran a leg on UT's SEC Indoor champion 4x800m relay unit in 1988 and 1990 and was on the NCAA Indoor runner-up 4x800m tandem in 1990. Bertrand Bachmann earned track & field All-America accolades in 1988, 1989 and 1990, and made the SEC Academic Honor Roll in 1990. She resides in Knoxville and is a teacher.
VILMARIE CASTELLVI (TENNIS)
A member of the tennis team from 1999-2003, Vilmarie Castellvi is the winningest player in the history of the Tennessee women's program, tallying a school-record 140 victories in her career and a UT season-best 45 singles wins in 2003. She also has the second-best single-season mark, tallying 40 wins in 2002. She was named the ITA Senior Player of the Year, SEC Player of the Year, Lady Vol Athlete of the Year and the Honda Award winner for tennis after that 2003 campaign, when she was the NCAA runner-up in singles after making the quarterfinal round the previous year. Castellvi was a first-team All-SEC selection in singles in 2003 and earned All-America honors in singles in 2002 and 2003 and in doubles in 2003. She also garnered SEC Academic Honor Roll distinction. Finishing her career with a 140-51 record in singles and a 97-63 mark in doubles, Castellvi was chosen as the Puerto Rican Woman of the 21st Century in 2002 and the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame's Female Amateur Athlete of the Year in 2003. Among other accomplishments, she ranks 10th in career doubles wins at UT (97) and also owns the No. 6 total for singles wins in a season (34, 2001) and the No. 13 mark for most doubles triumphs in a campaign with 31 in 2002. Castellvi resides in San Diego, Calif., and is a head tennis teaching pro.
TAMIKA CATCHINGS (BASKETBALL)
A member of the basketball team from 1997-2001, Tamika Catchings was on Tennessee's famed 39-0 NCAA Championship team of 1997-98, earning NCAA All-Final Four honors that season as well as USBWA and SEC Freshman of the Year accolades. Along with fellow Lady Vol Hall of Famers Chamique Holdsclaw and Semeka Randall, the talented trio became known as the "Three Meeks" during that magical campaign. Averaging 16.6 points and 7.9 rebounds per contest during her career, Catchings ranks fourth in career scoring (2,113) and rebounding (1,004) at UT. One of only two four-time WBCA All-Americans in Lady Vol history, Catchings helped Tennessee win four SEC titles, was a three-time first-team All-SEC selection and was named AP, Naismith, USBWA and WBCA Player of the Year in 2000 as a junior and surely would have raked in more accolades as a senior if not for a season-ending knee injury 17 games into her final year. That malady only served as a speed bump, as she embarked on a post-collegiate career that saw her win gold medals with the United States at the 2004, 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games. She still plays professionally and is a perennial all-star for the Indiana Fever, who drafted her with the third overall pick in the 2001 WNBA Draft.
RHIAN WILKINSON (SOCCER)
A member of the soccer team from 2000-04, Rhian Wilkinson is one of the most prolific offensive players to wear a Tennessee uniform. She still ranks first in career (32) and single-season assists (15), second in career points (88) and third in career goals (28), goals in a season (12) and points in a season (33). She also is tied for most matches started and played in a season with 25. Her performances enabled the Lady Vols to card SEC Eastern Division runner-up finishes in 2000 and 2001 before elevating the program to SEC Eastern Division and SEC Tournament champions in 2002 and the trifecta of division, regular season and tournament champs in 2003. She also was instrumental in the Lady Vols playing in their first four NCAA Tournaments from 2000-03. After earning SEC Freshman of the Year and Soccer Buzz Freshman All-America accolades in 2000, Wilkinson went on to first-team All-SEC honors in 2002 and made the SEC All-Tournament Team in 2002 and 2003. Academically, she was a two-time Academic All-American and SEC Academic Honor Roll member in 2002 and 2003. Wilkinson continues to play soccer professionally and has twice represented Canada in the Olympics (2008, 2012), earning a bronze medal in her latest opportunity.
The new group of inductees joins 12 prior classes of Lady Vol Hall of Famers: 2012 - Jane Haist (track & field), Michelle Marciniak (basketball), Pat Summitt (basketball-coach) and Young-A Yang (golf); 2011 - Bud Fields (volleyball-coach), Kathy Pesek (diving), Semeka Randall (basketball), Sue Walton (track & field) and Ariana Wilson (volleyball); 2010 - Amy Delashmit Neubauer (rowing), Laura Lauter Smith (soccer), Katharina Larsson Samuelsson (golf), Margie Lepsi Schroeffel (tennis), Adrienne Walker Cherry (softball) and Shelley Sexton Collier and Chamique Holdsclaw (basketball); 2009 - the late Dr. Nancy Lay (administrator) and athletes Jane Anthony Wobser (diving), Rosemarie Hauch (track & field), Tonya Lee (track & field) and Kellie Jolly Harper (basketball); 2008 - Heather Burgess Moore (swimming), Dedra Davis Wallace (track & field), Manisha Malhotra (tennis), Dena Head (basketball) and Jill Rankin Schneider (basketball); 2007 - Bridget Jackson Chaira (softball), Nicole deMan Dewes (swimming), Dianne Shoemaker DeNecochea (volleyball), Shelia Collins (basketball), Carla McGhee (basketball) and the late Dr. Helen B. Watson (administrator); 2006 - Tracy Bonner (diving), Karla Driesler McQuain (swimming), Tonya Edwards (basketball), Mary Ostrowski (basketball), Alisa Harvey (track & field/cross country) and Bonnie Kenny (volleyball); 2005 - Missy Alston Kane Bemiller (track & field/cross country), Angie Boyd Keck (golf), Tanya Haave (basketball) and Lea Henry Manning (basketball); 2004 - former UT President Dr. Joseph E. (Joe) Johnson and athletes Jasmin Jones Keller (track & field/cross country), Robin Maine Bugg (volleyball), Nikki McCray Pinson (basketball), Jenny McGrath Weaver (swimming) and the late Ilrey Oliver Sparks (track & field); 2003 - former UT Vice-Chancellor, the late Dr. Howard Aldmon, and athletes Cindy Brogdon (basketball), April Chapple (volleyball), Elizabeth Brown Jarvis (swimming), Cathy Rattray (track & field) and Patricia Roberts (basketball); 2002 - former Head Track & Field/Cross Country Coach Terry Crawford and athletes Catherine Byrne Maloney (swimming), LaVonna Martin Floreal (track & field), Cindy Noble Hauserman (basketball), Holly Warlick (basketball) and Patty Wiegand Pitcher (track & field/cross country).
The inaugural class selected for the Lady Volunteer Hall of Fame was inducted on Oct. 26, 2001. The 10 original members were former UT President Edward J. Boling, first-ever Lady Vol Athletics Director Gloria Ray and athletes Daedra Charles (basketball), Joetta Clark (track & field), Benita Fitzgerald (track & field), Bridgette Gordon (basketball), Tracy Ignatosky (swimming), Peta and Paula Kelly (tennis) and Beverly Robinson (volleyball).