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2007 Illinois ASA Hall of Fame

The Illinois Amateur Softball Association Hall of Fame Committee met last month and has announced the names of eight individuals and six teams that will be inducted on March 31st at the Dragon's Dome in Pekin. State Commissioner Don Brewer of Murphysboro and Hall of Fame Committee Chairman Jim Nicol of Decatur jointly released this announcement.

This years Illinois ASA Hall of Fame Induction Banquet will be at 6:00 PM at the Dragons Dome in Pekin and tickets cost only $25.00 each. For more ticket information and more detail please contact Bob Adams a at (309) 241-3416 or ASA State Commissioner Don Brewer at (618) 525-1986. Last years Illinois ASA Hall of Fame Induction Banquet was the largest attended ASA banquet with more than five hundred people on hand to honor those being inducted.

Those selected for induction this year include five players two umpires and one manager-sponsor:

Marvin Mennenga from Rantoul ..... Men's fastpitch and slowpitch pitcher from 1962 - 1988. Played for teams in Rantoul, Champaign and Flatville while leading his teams to two state championships and a 4th place finish at the ASA National Tournament. Mennenga passed away in 2006.

Charles Hall from Oakley .... Men's fastpitch catcher from 1958 - 1970. He played primarily for Oakley, Decatur Prefect, Decatur Rileys and Cerro Gordo. In 1966 he had seven hits including two home runs in sixteen at bats for Decatur Perfect as they won the West Central Regional to advance to the ASA National Tournament in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Cliff Martin from Cerro Gordo ..... Men's fastpitch catcher from 1946 - 1966. He played for the Oakley Panthers, Cerro Gordo, Decatur Rileys and Decatur Alyco. Know for his excellent defensive abilities with a strong throwing arm and a .275 career batting average.

Jess Novak from Decatur ... Men's fastpitch pitcher for thirty years with more than 700 wins, four state championships and six 'Most Valuable Player Awards to his credit. Novak played primarily for Decatur teams including Rusk & Morrow, Toms Grill, Morehouse & Wells, Niche Tavern, Bargers, Bob's Tap and Chrysler Academy. He retired from playing softball in the 1970's.

Barrett Rochman from Carbondale ..... Women's fastpitch sponsor and manager for the Carbondale Cougars. His teams won five Illinois State Championship's and they also won the Class AA 1991 ASA West Central Regional Tournament. Ten years later his team dropped down to the Class A Division and won the ASA Women's National Championship in Auburn Alabama. This team is believed to be the only Illinois team to ever win a Women's ASA National Fastpitch Championship.

Jeff 'Bubba' Bell from Peoria .... Men's fastpitch firstbaseman who was highly popular with both his teammates and opponents for played for Taylorville, Decatur A's, Loami Bandits, Bloomington Beer Nuts, Bloomington Hearts and the River City Rage. He played on six Illinois state championship teams, four Midwest Regional Championship teams. Twice he was named 'MVP' at the Midwest Regional Tournament (1989 & 1991) and was also names a a third team All-American at the 1993 Men's Major National Tournament. Bell passed away in 2006.

Charles Houston from Macomb .... Men's fastpitch umpire since 1976. He was worked fifteen Illinois ASA State Tournaments, five ASA Midwest Regional Tournaments and eight ASA National Tournaments. He is currently umpiring and is also serving as the Deputy Umpire in Chief for the state of Illinois ASA program.

Nick Finck from Maroa and Wyoming ..... Men's fastpitch umpire for over twenty-five years. He has worked in excess of fifty state tournaments His national tournament resume includes the Men's Major, JO, Men's Class A, Men's 40 & Over and the Men's Class B National tournament in his twelve assignments to work the ASA National Championship Tournaments. In 1991 he also worked the Pan American Games in Colorado Springs, CO.

In addition to these eight individuals six team organizations will be honored at the 2007 Illinois ASA Hall of Fame induction banquet. Those teams are;

East Peoria Avantis ..... Women's fastpitch team that won four ASA Women's Major state championships and four ASA West Central Regional Championships.

Bloomington Hearts .... Men's Fastpitch team that won five Men's Major Fastpitch State Championships and five ASA West Central Regional Championship.

Granite City Steel ..... Men's Industrial slowpitch team that has won five state Illinois ASA championships.

Carbondale Cougars ..... Women's fastpitch team that has won five Illinois ASA state championships, one ASA West Central Regional Championship and one ASA Women's National Championship.

Heartland Havoc ..... Junior Olympic organization from the "quad Cities area. The Heartland Havoc organization has won numerous Junior Olympic State Championships in all divisions.

Rudd's Team and Trophy ... Boys fastpitch Junior Olympic team that won the 1982 and the 1985 ASA Boys 15 & Under National Championship.



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