Guilford Adds Three Individuals, One Team to Athletics Hall of Fame

1972-73 Guilford College Men's Basketball Team
1972-73 Guilford College Men's Basketball Team

GREENSBORO, N.C. - Three former student-athletes and the 1972-73 men’s basketball team will be inducted into the Guilford College Athletics Hall of Fame Saturday, Sept. 21, as part of Homecoming Weekend. The individual inductees selected are Amy Lynn Alfaro ’90 (nee Warner), David Heggie ’98, and Daniel Strelkauskas ’98.

Amy Alfaro Alfaro played soccer at Guilford and was the school’s first GTE Academic All-American. On the field, Alfaro captained the Quakers and scored the winning goal versus Queens University in the final game of the 1989 campaign, which clinched Guilford’s first winning season. She was twice voted team MVP and named an All-East Region selection by the National Soccer Coaches Association of America. Alfaro was just as fierce in the classroom where she made Guilford’s dean’s list every semester as a political science and Spanish double major. She was one of six national recipients of the 1991 Woody Hayes National Scholar-Athlete Award, presented by the University Sertoma Club of Columbus, Ohio, to the top male and female scholar-athletes in each NCAA division. Alfaro also collected many Guilford honors, including the Nereus C. English Athletic Leadership Award, the Eugene S. Hire Achievement Award, the E. Garness Purdom Scholar-Athlete Award and the Dana Scholarship. She graduated with a 3.92 grade point average.

After Guilford, Alfaro taught Spanish at Triton High School and served as the assistant coach of the boys’ soccer team. A year later, she helped start Triton’s girls’ soccer team, just as she did as a student at Enloe High School before attending Guilford. The Raleigh resident remains an active soccer player, competing in adult leagues in the Triangle.

David Heggie Heggie was an offensive force for the football team during his Guilford career. The powerful running back owns the school record for career rushing attempts (618), shares the mark for rushing touchdowns (18), and stands second in career rushing yards (3,242). Heggie was a five-time All-Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) performer as a punter and running back and earned the league’s Player of the Year Award as a freshman. He was named to the Football Gazette All-America and All-South teams in 1995. As a junior, he earned Guilford’s English Award, the school’s highest honor for athletic ability and leadership. Heggie ended his career as a Quaker in 1998 as the team’s Most Valuable Offensive Player.

Heggie has maintained a strong relationship with Guilford and received the school’s 2013 Young Alumni Achievement Award. He spent four years on Mike Ketchum’s ’76 staff as an assistant coach and also spoke at Guilford’s 2013 Commencement Ceremony. In 2008, Heggie became the Executive Director of the Bryan YMCA, the first African-American named to the position.

Daniel Strelkauskas Strelkauskas was a record-setting quarterback for the Quakers who went on to a decorated career with the United States Marine Corps. He graduated with 14 Guilford passing records and finished second among the ODAC’s career leaders in passing attempts, completions, yards and touchdowns. The Charleston, S.C., native graduated with Guilford standards for career passing attempts (833), completions (410), yards (6,028), touchdowns (53) and total offensive yards (6,387). Strelkauskas received Second Team All-ODAC laurels in 1997 and earned honorable mention all-league honors in 1996. He captured five ODAC Player of the Week Awards in his career, three in 1997. His best season came as a senior when he completed 152 passes for 2,367 yards and 26 touchdowns (all school records at the time) and helped Ketchum's team to a share of the 1997 ODAC football title.

Strelkauskas was a two-time recipient of Guilford’s Golden Helmet Award, given annually for exceptional leadership, a trait that has served him well after Guilford. After a brief stint as an assistant coach for the Quakers, the Officers Candidate School graduate started his career as a second lieutenant in the Marines. In November 2009, Strelkauskas became the 61st recipient of the Silver Star since the start of the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq, the third-highest honor a Marine can receive for bravery in battle. Strelkauskas and his unit were involved in a four-hour firefight with members of the Taliban in Afghanistan when Strelkauskas dragged a critically injured staff sergeant to safety despite shrapnel wounds to his hands. That act of heroism, along with the wherewithal to direct a bomb-strike allowing his troops to escape to safety, earned Strelkauskas and his men a well-deserved trip home, plus their accolades for bravery. Strelkauskas remains in service as a Program Manager in the Department of the Army.

The season for the 1972-73 Men’s Basketball Team was nothing short of a surprise. After building a nationally competitive team in the late 1960s and early 1970s, Guilford finally cracked through to win its first national championship in 1972-73. Under the direction of third-year head coach Jack Jensen, the unseeded Quakers (29-5) completed an improbable run through the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) Tournament field with a 99-96 win over eighth-seeded Maryland-Eastern Shore in Kansas City, Mo. Three student-athletes from the 1972-73 team played in the NBA (M.L. Carr '73, World B. Free and Greg Jackson '74) and seven have been inducted into the Guilford College Athletics Hall of Fame.

Here’s a list of the team members, their residence and personal highlights.

M.L. Carr ’73 (Boston, Mass./Huntsville, Ala.)

Carr was an All-American forward and enjoyed a successful professional basketball career after Guilford. He played 10 years in the NBA and won world titles with the Boston Celtics in 1981 and 1984. Carr also coached and worked in Boston’s front office and today presides over the Dream Company, LLC. Often recognized for community service, he has served on Guilford’s Board of Trustees and was inducted into Guilford’s Athletics Hall of Fame in 1986.

World B. Free (Philadelphia, Pa.) – director of player development & community ambassador for the Philadelphia 76ers

Free was a freshman on Guilford’s 1973 title team and became the first rookie to win the Chuck Taylor Award as the NAIA Tournament’s MVP. Free enjoyed a 13-year NBA career before retiring in 1988 as the sixth-leading scorer among guards with 17,955 points. A member of the NAIA Hall of Fame, Free was inducted into Guilford’s Athletics Hall of Fame in 1990.

Greg Jackson ’74 (Brooklyn, N.Y.)

Jackson passed away in 2012. He played two years in the NBA, but made his greatest impact as a long-time leader and mentor in his Brownsville neighborhood. He is survived by his wife, Carmen, and their nine children. Greg was inducted into Guilford’s Athletics Hall of Fame in 1992.

Ted East ’73 (Winston-Salem, N.C.)

East captained the national championship team along with Carr and was a four-year starter for the Quakers. East was named a state Officer of the Year by the North Carolina Department of Correction in 1997 for his efforts in Forsyth County. He was inducted into Guilford’s Athletics Hall of Fame in 1999.

Robert Fulton ’74 (Clemmons, N.C.) – safety director in Forsyth County

Robert was an all-star baseball player and later coached the Quakers’ baseball team for 13 seasons. He was inducted into Guilford’s Athletics Hall of Fame in 1993.

Steve Hankins ’75 (McLeansville, N.C.)

Hankins was a 28-year-old sophomore center on the 1972-73 team who joined the Quakers after a career with the U.S. Marine Corps. Hankins served as a pall bearer at President John F. Kennedy’s funeral and served 44 months in Vietnam. After graduating from Guilford, Hankins coached high school basketball in Guilford County for a number of teams.

Robert Kent ’76 (High Point, N.C.) – teacher for Guilford County Schools

After graduation, Kent went on to enjoy a fine high school coaching and teaching career a multiple schools in Guilford County. He won over 500 games as a boys’ basketball coach and led Southwest Guilford High School to the 1996 state 2A title. Kent was inducted into Guilford’s Athletics Hall of Fame in 1997.

Ray Massengill ’75 (Four Oaks, N.C.) – Johnston County Public Utilities

The starting center for the national championship team returned to his native Johnston County where he has enjoyed a successful career in the timber and forestry industry.

John Ralls ’76 (High Point, N.C.) – teacher and coach for Davidson (N.C.) County Schools

John has won 12 state championships in four sports (girls’ basketball, softball, boys’ golf, girls’ golf) and won 701 basketball games in his 34-year coaching career. He was inducted into Guilford’s Athletics Hall of Fame in 1996.

Greg Speas (Mars Hill, N.C.) – musician

Speas spent two years at Guilford after a scholastic career at Grimsley High School in Greensboro.

Head coach Jack Jensen (Greensboro, N.C.)

Jensen passed away in 2010. He was in his third of a 29-year career on the Quakers’ sidelines when he led the 1972-73 team to the title. The Quakers won 386 games under Jensen, who also won three national titles as Guilford’s head golf coach. Jensen is a member of the Guilford, NAIA, Wake Forest and Golf Coaches Association of America Halls of Fame. He is survived by his wife, Marsha ’74, and their two children.

Assistant coach H. F. “Buzz” Dunning (Greensboro, N.C.) – retired

Dunning served as an assistant in both football and basketball at Guilford. He holds the distinction of coaching in games for two different teams in a single day. Dunning is a member of the Summerville (S.C.) High School Hall of Fame.

Team manager Niel Welborn ’75 (Rock Hill, S.C.) – vice president, Todd, Bremer & Lawson, Inc.

Welborn was a student manager of the 1972-73 basketball team and also served in that capacity with the Quakers’ football and golf teams. He is an active member of the Rock Hill community and has served on the Rock Hill Sports Council and the city’s Capital Project Sales Tax Committee.

Student sports information director Bill Buckley (Atlanta, Ga.) – vice president, Momar Chemicals

Buckley was the student sports information director during the 1972-73 season. He worked briefly in the media as a sports reporter before moving into sales. He has worked at Momar since 1977 and was inducted into Guilford’s Athletics Hall of Fame in 2000.

Student athletic trainer – Ken Bunker ’75 (Silver Spring, Md.) – teacher and coach, Montgomery County (Md.) Schools

Bunker worked with the Quakers’ basketball team for three seasons. He coached basketball at the college and junior college levels across the country before landing in Maryland. Bunker served as head basketball coach at Tennessee Wesleyan College and Albert Einstein High School in Maryland.

This year’s group of honorees brings Guilford’s Athletics Hall of Fame membership to 214 individual members and three teams. Past inductees include NBA star Bob Kauffman '68, major-league baseball players Ernie Shore '13, Rick Ferrell '28, Tom Zachary '18 and Tony Womack '91, and professional golfer Lee Porter '89.