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Navy Rugby Alumni Induct 3rd Hall Of Fame Class

College Men

Navy Rugby Alumni Induct 3rd Hall Of Fame Class

Colleen McCloskey photo.

During Navy Rugby’s annual “With You” fundraising dinner this year, the first two Women’s Navy Rugby players will be inducted into the Navy Rugby Hall of Fame. This is the third Hall of Fame class to be inducted into the Navy Rugby Hall of Fame. The Navy Men’s program was established in 1963 and the Women started in 1995.

annual “With You” fundraising dinner honors a Navy rugby alumnus who paid the ultimate sacrifice while serving on Active Duty. This year the Navy Rugby Alumni Association recognizes Lieutenant James Merrill, class of 1980. Jim was Captain of the 1980 team, leading Navy to its first of many Final Four appearances. Honouring Jim is particularly appropriate as the 1980 team will be inducted with the 2018 HoF Class. Jim tragically died in a jet training accident in 1984.

the 1980 team on their induction will be Women’s club teammates Lindsey Hawkins and Kim Kesselman, both members of the class of 2000. Lindsey and Kim led the Women’s team to its first final four appearance in 1995, quickly establishing Navy Women’s Rugby as one of the premier teams in the country. Lindsey and Kim were also both three time All-Americans and selected to the U-23 National team as well as the Combined Services team, the United States National Military team.

Rounding out the 2018 HoF class are two stalwarts from the Men’s program: Matt Aylward, class of 1982, was an integral part of the 1980 final four team, as well as being regarded as one of the best collegiate props during the early 1980s. Jason Hedberg captained the 1994 National Championship runner-up team as well as being a two time All-American. Jason went on to play for the Combined Services team and professionally in England.

The Hof class of 2018 joins the inaugural inductee class consisting of Jon Prusmack, Ernie Blake ‘64, Sam Marrone ’66 and General Carlton Fulford ’66. 2017 HoF class included Chuck French ’81, and Dewey Meteer ’69 who also coached the 1980 team as well as former Men’s head coach Mike Flanagan, Navy’s all-time winningest coach.

The “With You” dinner will take place at the Loews Hotel in Annapolis on Friday, September 7th.

Contact navyrugbyalumnioutreach@gmail.com for tickets or more information.