Gustavus Set to Induct Nine New Members into Athletics Hall of Fame

Posted on June 14th, 2021 by

SAINT PETER, Minn. – The Gustavus Adolphus College Department of Athletics has chosen nine individuals for induction into its Athletics Hall of Fame. The 2021 inductees include Beth DeLaRosby ’05 (swimming & diving), Doug Espenson ’05 (basketball), Tara Houlihan Whiting ’06 (tennis/volleyball), Bobby Kroog ’06 (soccer), Audrey Lenoch ’06 (softball), Lyndsey Palen Crossley ’06 (tennis), Amanda Parker ’05 (gymnastics), Ben Sherer ’06 (baseball), and Tom Thorkelson ’70 (coach).

This group will be honored at the Athletics Hall of Fame Banquet, which will be held in Cec Eckhoff Alumni Hall on Saturday, Oct. 23, following the football game against Saint John’s University at 1 p.m. Individuals eligible for induction into the Gustavus Athletics Hall of Fame are athletes, coaches, and benefactors. Selection of athletes is based on athletic achievements while a student at Gustavus. Eight members of the Gustavus Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2021 will be inducted for their accomplishments as student-athletes, while one will be inducted as a coach.

Beth DeLaRosby, a Two Harbors, Minn. native, was a five-time All-American, highlighted by a third-place finish in the 50 free at the 2004 NCAA meet, and led the women’s swimming & diving team to two MIAC championships in 2002 and 2004. DeLaRosby earned 10 All-America honorable mention honors and was an eight-time MIAC event champion, specializing in the freestyle.

Doug Espenson, a Mankato, Minn. native, led the men’s basketball team to two MIAC championships and four appearances at the NCAA tournament, including a national runner-up finish in 2003. Espenson, a shooting guard, earned two All-Region honors, was named the 2004-05 MIAC MVP, and ranks 12th in program history with 1,281 career points.

Tara Houlihan Whiting, a Sioux Falls, S.D. native, won consecutive NCAA titles in women’s tennis doubles in 2005 and 2006 with partner Lyndsey Palen Crossley, and was a five-time All-American. Houlihan Whiting won 145 career singles and doubles matches. She also was an All-Conference volleyball player and graduated as the school record holder with 1,226 career digs.

Bobby Kroog, a Bloomington, Minn. native, is the only three-time All-American in Gustavus men’s soccer history and was the 2005 MIAC Player of the Year. Kroog, a midfielder, guided the Gusties to two MIAC championships and three NCAA tournament appearances, including a national runner-up finish in 2005.

Audrey Lenoch, a Pine Island, Minn. native, earned three-America honors at three different positions for Gustavus softball. Lenoch, an infielder, was the second player in program history to earn All-Conference honors all four seasons and ranks in the program’s top-five in nearly every offensive statistical category.

Lyndsey Palen Crossley, a Rochester, Minn. native, won consecutive NCAA titles in women’s tennis doubles in 2005 and 2006 with partner Tara Houlihan Whiting, and was a four-time All-American. Palen Crossley earned the 2006 Arthur Ashe Award and Chris Evert Award, and won 156 career singles and doubles matches.

Amanda Parker, an Ames, Iowa native, was a two-time national champion gymnast (2004 all-around and vault), nine-time All-American, and three-time CoSIDA Academic All-American. Parker won the 2002 Honda Award as the Division III female athlete of the year in gymnastics and was awarded the prestigious NCAA Postgraduate Scholarship in 2005.

Ben Sherer, a Bismarck, N.D. native, earned three CoSIDA Academic All-America honors, three All-Conference selections, and was the 2004 MIAC Baseball Player of the Year. Sherer, a first baseman, ranks in the program’s top-10 in nearly every offensive statistical category after playing in 156 career games.

Tom Thorkelson, a Granite Falls, Minn. native, has coached 54 All-Americans and five national champions in throwing events since starting as an assistant track & field coach in 1985. Thorkelson was the head coach from 1999-2009 and capped his tenure at the helm with a sixth-place finish at the 2009 women’s national meet. He continues to serve as the throws coach for a group that is a perennial power in Division III.

The selection of the inductees to the Gustavus Hall of Fame is made by the Gustavus Hall of Fame Board, which is an 11-member group consisting of current athletic administrators, former coaches, and alumni.

 

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