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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    New Hall of Fame class announced

    Seven individuals and six national championship teams will comprise Arizona’s 32nd Hall of Fame class. The class will be honored during Homecoming Weekend November 2-4.

    The 2007 Arizona softball team, which on June 6 won its eighth national title since 1991, will be honored. The team faced elimination from the Women’s College World Series five times during the tournament but ultimately prevailed over Tennessee.

    Softball pitcher Jennie Finch will be honored in her first year of eligibility. Finch was a three-time All-American pitcher for the Wildcats from 1998-2002. She amassed 109 victories before playing professional and Olympic softball, while becoming an American icon.

    She is currently playing for the national team, which is being coached by UA head coach Mike Candrea.

    Another individual of note in the class is former Arizona baseball player and coach Jerry Stitt.

    Stitt spent 27 years as a Wildcat, starting his tenure as a center fielder from 1964-1968. He was a first-team ABCA All-American his senior year when he batted .366. Ten years later, he joined the Arizona coaching staff as an assistant, working with outfielders and hitters.

    In 1996, he became Arizona’s fourth head coach since 1922, following the retirement of Jerry Kindall. He had a record of 157-124 and was 58-75 in the Pac-10, leading the Wildcats to the NCAA tournament in 1999. He was head coach until 2002 when current head coach Andy Lopez took over.

    Fifty-seven players were drafted by major-league teams during his tenure at Arizona, including Kenny Lofton and J.T. Snow and current Red Sox manager Terry Francona.

    “”It’s a special honor to even be

    considered,”” Stitt said Thursday from Montana, where he is currently the hitting coach for the Arizona Diamondbacks’ rookie-league team, the Missoula Osprey. “”It will mean a lot to me to have a plaque of mine hanging in corridors of McKale Center.””

    Former student-athletes become eligible for the Arizona Sports Hall of Fame five years after completing their athletic eligibility. Championship teams are eligible immediately following the their seasons.

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