Hawks welcome eight new inductees to Hall of Fame
Sept. 25 marked an historic night for Wilfrid Laurier University, as the Hawks welcomed eight new inductees to the Golden Hawk Hall of Fame. The inductees, including six individual athletes, a builder and the 2005 men’s football Vanier Cup championship team were recognized for their outstanding achievements over the course of their Laurier careers.
The individual inductees included Nick Cameron, Andy Baechler and Giancarlo Rapanero of Laurier football, Lauren Barch and Andrea Ironside of the women’s hockey team, Kirsten Gerrie of the lacrosse team and Paul Giannelia, a builder and the president of Strait Crossing.
“Of course it’s a huge honour. There’s so many people that I’ve had the pleasure of meeting either playing with or through coaching or interacted with that are currently in the Hall of Fame already that I respect so much. To be mentioned in the same breath is a huge honour,” Baechler said.
Many of these individuals made strides in their Laurier careers. Baechler finished his five-year career with 2,262 yards and was third in career receiving touchdowns while teammate Cameron cracked the 1,000 rushing yard mark during the Hawks’ 2005 championship run. Rapanero took home the President’s Trophy in his tenure as the top stand-up defensive player in the Ontario University Athletics (OUA).
Meanwhile, Ironside and Barch won many OUA championships together, with Ironside winning five and Barch winning four. The two teammates spent the majority of their careers together, with Ironside ranking third on Laurier’s point total with 122 points while Barch accumulated 109 points in 102 games.
Gerrie was part of a lacrosse team that went a staggering overall record of 44-1 from the 2005-2008 season, taking home the OUA offensive honours in 2007 and took home Laurier’s Rich Newbrough rookie of the year award with 36 goals.
The 2005 Vanier Cup championship team was the team induction for the year. A year after being denied a chance to go to the Vanier Cup in 2004, came back the following year to go undefeated – defeating a tough McMaster team before defeating Western for the Yates — and won it all, winning on a field goal by Brian Devlin against the Saskatchewan Huskies, 24-23.