Class of 2014
Four individuals and both the 2001 and 2002 Eastern Volleyball Teams to be honored on Oct 3-4 at EWU
Eastern Washington University is going to double its fun at this year’s Eastern Athletics Hall of Fame Induction
Volleyball/basketball player Janelle Ruen-Allen and the 2001 and 2002 Eagle Volleyball teams she played on are among the 14th class of inductees in the Eastern Athletics Hall of Fame, and will be honored on Oct. 3-4, 2014, in Cheney, Wash. In addition, football player Greg Gavin and contributor Judy Crabb will be inducted, and men’s basketball player Jack Perrault will be honored posthumously.
The 2001 and 2002 volleyball squads combined for a 50-8 record under former and current head coach Wade Benson, who returned to coach the Eagles in the 2013 season. The 2001 squad advanced as far as any other Big Sky Conference team in league history by beating Oregon State and winning a first-round game in the NCAA Tournament. Eastern finished just third in the regular season in the Big Sky, but rolled through the Big Sky Tournament with victories over Idaho State, Northern Arizona and regular season champion and tourney host Sacramento State.
The 2002 volleyball team finished 29-2, but astonishingly did not receive one of 33 at-large berths handed out to non-automatic qualifiers for the 64-team NCAA Championship. With the fifth-best winning percentage (.935) in NCAA Division I history – breaking school and Big Sky Conference records in the process -- the Eagles were ranked as high as 15th nationally.
Ruen starred on both of those teams, and was the Big Sky’s MVP as a senior in 2002 and the BSC Tournament MVP in 2001. She also played basketball for the Eagles, and was a two-time winner of the prestigious Inland Northwest Female Athlete of the Year Award presented by the Spokane Sportswriters and Broadcasters. She went on to play professional volleyball and is now an assistant coach at EWU under Benson.
Crabb has served as the secretary and administrative assistant for the Eastern athletic department for nearly 40 years. A lifelong Cheney resident, she started in September of 1977 and has worked under nine athletic directors in her tenure in Cheney.
Gavin was a two-time NAIA All-American and was honored on the All-Evergreen Conference first team in 1967, 1968 and 1969. He was selected as the top center in school history in public voting which took place in 2008 when Eastern’s “100 for 100” all-time football team was announced. He went on to win 120 games in 29 seasons as a high school football coach.
Perrault, who passed away at the age of 51, lettered for Eastern’s basketball team from 1942-45 and played in the NAIA Tournament three times. Eastern won at least 20 games in each of his four years with a total of 95 victories. An incredible athlete who was an alternate for the 1948 Olympic team, he became a quarterback at Washington State and played professional basketball.
The induction breakfast (9 a.m.) and ceremony (9:30 a.m.) takes place on Oct. 4 at the Pence Union Building. The public is invited to attend and the cost is $15 per person. Guests must RSVP to 509-359-2463 or 1-800-648-7697. Inductees will also be honored at halftime of EWU’s football game against Idaho State at 1:35 p.m., as well as Eastern’s volleyball game the night before against Idaho on Oct. 3 at 6 p.m.
Established in 1996, this year’s inductees will bring the total number of individuals in the Hall of Fame to 69 and teams to 12. There are also currently 13 recipients of the Eastern Athletics Hall of Fame Service and Contribution Award. All of the inductees and induction classes may be viewed at: http://www.goeags.com/hallfame/hallfame.
Below are bios of each of the inductees.
The backbone of the Eastern Athletic Department for four decades, Crabb serves as the department secretary and has nearly 40 years of experience at EWU. Crabb began her career at Eastern Washington University in September of 1977 as an office assistant in the HPERA Department. She became the athletic department secretary in 1979 when Athletics became its own department. She is the primary contact for the department and her duties include coordination, communication and administrative services for the entire staff. In 2000, she received the Eastern Washington University Distinguished Service Award. She has worked with nine athletic directors at Eastern, including previous Eastern Athletics Hall of Fame recipients Jerry Martin, Ron Raver, Dick Zornes and Pamela Parks. Crabb resides in Cheney and attended Spokane Falls Community College as a scholarship student-athlete competing in basketball and track and field.
Gavin twice earned NAIA All-America honors as a center for Eastern’s football team, earning first team honors in 1969 and second team accolades in 1968. He also played on Eastern’s 1966 and 1967 teams which had a collective 18-2 record and advanced to the NAIA championship game in 1967. In 1967, 1968 and 1969, Gavin was a first team All-Evergreen Conference selection and earned Little All-Northwest honors all three seasons as well. As a senior, he was named to the Kodak All-West Coast Team for small colleges (all divisions below Division I, including the Big Sky Conference). In four seasons playing for Eastern, he missed only one game because of a concussion. He was captain both as a junior and senior, and is believed to be the first underclassman to serve as team captain in school history. He also received team MVP and Most Inspirational honors in 1969. He went on to win 120 games in 29 seasons as a high school head coach, including the WIAA State AA title in 1976 while coaching at West Valley in Spokane. His team finished the season unbeaten and defeated Hoquiam in the championship game. The year before, West Valley fell to Sumner in the title game. He started his coaching career at Deer Park High School, and followed his stint at West Valley by helping Central Valley to its first-ever State playoff appearance in 1982. He finished his coaching career in Yakima as head coach at Davis and Eisenhower high schools. He helped Eisenhower win the Big Nine Conference title in 1992 as the Cadets had consecutive winning seasons and advanced to the State playoffs. In 1999, Dick Zornes selected Gavin to the "Z" Team consisting of 36 players that he felt were the best players and made the largest contributions toward the 158 games Eastern won in Zornes' 26-year association with Eagle Football. Gavin was selected by the Eastern Athletic Department to the “100 for 100” All-Time Football Team, which was honored on Sept. 27, 2008, to commemorate Eastern’s 100th year of football. In a public vote, he was selected as the top center among position-by-position winners on the “100 for 100” squad. He was inducted into the Washington State Football Coaches Hall of Fame in January 2009. The 1967 football team he played on was the inaugural team inducted into the Eastern Athletics Hall of Fame in 2001.
An incredible athlete who later became a quarterback at Washington State, Perrault lettered for Eastern’s basketball team from 1942-45 and played in the NAIA Tournament three of the years. The tournament was not held the other year he played, in 1944. Eastern won at least 20 games in each of his four years as he helped lead his team to a 95-24 record (.798 winning percentage), including 27-5 records in 1942-43 and 1944-45. Eastern was 2-3 in five NAIA Tournament games with Perrault on the roster, including a pair of wins in the 1943 Tournament before a 57-51 overtime loss in the quarterfinals. As a senior he ranked second nationally by scoring 507 points (16.4 average), which stood as a school record for 26 years. He earned All-Winco honors in the 1942-43 season when Eastern won the league title, but the war interrupted the league season for the next two years. Because of incomplete records, Perrault's career scoring is unavailable. As a sophomore and junior he earned the school's Scarlet Arrow Inspirational Award, and as a senior he served as team captain. He received his Eastern degree in 1945. Named by the legendary Red Reese as one of the greatest basketball players he ever coached, Perrault was originally from Toppenish, Wash. He also lettered in football twice at Eastern (1941 and 1942). Perrault went on to play the 1945 season as a quarterback at Washington State, and helped lead the Cougars to a 6-2-1 record. He then played professional basketball for the Phillips 66 Oilers in the Industrial League, helping the team win the National Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) title in 1948. Perrault was an alternate for the Olympic men’s basketball team in 1948 and traveled with the team to London. His brothers, Fred Perrault and Jean “Bill” Perrault, also attended Eastern and graduated in 1950. Jack Perrault passed away at the age of 51.
A multi-sport standout in volleyball and basketball, Ruen was honored in both 2001 and 2002 as the Inland Northwest Female Athlete of the Year by the Spokane Sportswriters and Broadcasters. Ruen completed her final year in volleyball as the 2002 Big Sky Conference MVP in leading Eastern to a 29-2 record and the Big Sky Conference regular season championship. In addition, she became the only Eagle volleyball player to record more than 1,100 kills and 1,100 digs in her career. She finished her career ranked 12th in Big Sky history and third at EWU in career digs with 1,298, and her 1,268 kills ranked second all-time in school history. The 2002 American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) All-Pacific Region honorable mention played in every Eagle volleyball match in her career, playing in a total of 417 sets. Eastern won 93 of those 120 matches for an impressive winning percentage of .778. Her 419 kills and 3.92 average per game in 2002 ranked fifth in school history, as well as her 415 digs and 3.88 average per game. She also ranked high in other EWU career categories as well, including kills per game (3.04/fifth), digs per game (3.88/fifth), hitting percentage (.253/sixth), hitting attempts (3,212/third) and service aces (140/second). In addition to her conference MVP honor, for the second-straight year Ruen was a first team All-Big Sky and All-Big Sky Tournament selection. She also won four Big Sky Conference Player of the Week honors in 2002 and seven in her career, and won a total of seven all-tournament honors in her career. She became the first female athlete at EWU to receive All-Big Sky honors in two sports in the same year when she was an honorable mention selection in basketball in the 2000-2001 season after earning second team All-Big Sky honors in volleyball in the fall. In 56 career games in basketball, she averaged 7.3 points, 4.3 rebounds, 2.0 assists and 1.8 steals while making 49.3 percent of her field goal attempts and 70.6 percent of her free throws. In the 2002-03 season, Ruen helped Eastern to a 17-12 record representing Eastern's most wins since 1988 and a six-game improvement over the previous season. She earned Academic All-District VIII honors as a senior in volleyball when she was also selected as a 2002 Sports Illustrated "Face in the Crowd." She earned seven Big Sky Conference All-Academic honors, including four in volleyball and three in basketball. She is a native of Post Falls, Idaho, where she was a league MVP in both volleyball and basketball. She earned first-team All-State honors for both sports, and at the time of her graduation, held the Trojan school record for points in basketball and kills in volleyball. After graduating from Eastern in 2003, Ruen went on to play professional beach volleyball, including five seasons on the former AVP Beach Volleyball Tour. She competed in more than 50 national tournaments, placing as high as ninth two times. She also competed internationally at FIVB challenger/satellite events in Hong Kong and Poland, placing seventh and second, which marked her best finish as a pro. In her rookie season in 2006, Ruen and partner Jennifer Snyder ranked 42nd on the tour and then improved to 40th the next year. Ruen was nominated for the Rookie of the Year Award in 2006. She combined with Snyder to finish 27-25 in 14 tournaments in 2006, with a high finish of 13th (five times). The following season, Ruen was 19-30 with a high of ninth twice (both with Snyder as her teammate). In 2008, Ruen was 6-18 with a high finish of 13th (twice). On Aug. 17, 2006, Ruen was chosen to ring the opening bell at the New York Mercantile Exchange in New York City and in 2008 appeared in the motion picture “Impact Point” distributed by Sony Pictures. In 2008, Ruen joined Benson’s staff at Auburn as director of volleyball operations. She spent one season with the Tigers before returning to California, where she resided with her husband, Billy Allen – himself a professional beach volleyball player. Ruen was a head coach for the Sports Shack Volleyball Club for four years, and served as Programs Coordinator for the United States Youth Volleyball League. She managed more than 30 youth volleyball programs throughout the U.S., helping recruit, train and supervise all coaches and staff. She also coached volleyball at Wildwood School in Los Angeles, Calif., and basketball at Vistamar School. She returned to Eastern in 2013 to serve as an assistant coach under Wade Benson.
Making their fourth appearance in the NCAA Tournament, Eastern
advanced as far as any other Big Sky Conference team in league
history by winning a first-round game. Eastern defeated Oregon
State in five games before losing to Hawaii in four games in the
second round. Eastern finished just third in the regular season in
the Big Sky -- and had its 29-match home winning streak come to an
end. However, Eastern rolled through the Big Sky Tournament with
victories over Idaho State, Northern Arizona and regular season
champion and tourney host Sacramento State. Janelle Ruen was
selected as the tournament's MVP, and Robyn Felder and Lindsay
Crandell were also selected to the all-tournament team as Eastern
hit a record .329 as a team. Ruen earned first team All-Big Sky
Conference honors, Felder was on the second team and setter
Courtney Bush received honorable mention. Felder was also given
CoSIDA Academic All-District VIII honors and was one of nine Eagles
to earn Big Sky All-Academic accolades. As part of the celebration
for the 25th anniversary of the Big Sky Conference for women in the
2013-14 school year, the team’s win over OSU was selected as
No. 9 on the list of the league’s 25 Greatest Women’s
Front Row (left to right): Robyn Felder, Janelle Ruen, Emily Hall. Middle Row: Lindsay Crandell, Jessie Wright, Jamie Carmichael, Casey Evans. Back Row: Lindsay Page, Fehi Tuivai, Michelle Jeske, Courtney Bush, Megan Kitterman, Keva Sonderen, Monica Lynch.
Eastern closed the season by setting a new school and Big Sky Conference record for winning percentage -- .935. However, the 29-2 Eagles astonishingly did not receive one of 33 at-large berths handed out to non-automatic qualifiers for the 64-team NCAA Championship. Coach Wade Benson's team won its first 20 matches -- including 17 on the road. With the fifth-best winning percentage in NCAA Division I, the Eagles were ranked as high as 15th nationally -- the highest ranking ever for a team in the Big Sky Conference. Sacramento State was the only team to defeat the Eagles in 2002, including the championship match of the Big Sky Conference Tournament. Eastern rolled to the Big Sky regular season title with a 13-1 record, with the lone loss at Sacramento State, snapping Eastern’s 17-match road winning streak that ranked 13th all-time in NCAA history at the time. Besides their record-setting 29-2 record, the Eagles were also 88-19 in sets played in 2002 for a .822 winning percentage. Sac State snapped EWU's 20-match winning streak on Oct. 19, and ended a nine-match streak for the Eagles on Nov. 23. Led by seniors Janelle Ruen and Monica Lynch, the Eagles set school and Big Sky records for hitting percentage with a mark of .282. Ruen was the MVP in the Big Sky Conference and joined Lynch and setter Jessie Wright on the All-Big Sky first team, with Courtney Bush, Megan Kitterman and Keva Sonderen receiving honorable mention. Ruen earned honorable mention AVCA All-Region VII honors and was a first team pick on the CoSIDA Academic All-District VIII squad. Bush earned third team Academic All-District VIII honors and a total of 12 Eagles were on the Big Sky All-Academic team.