PLATTEVILLE, Wis – The University of Wisconsin-Platteville will induct four former standout student-athletes and a long-time coach from five different sports into its Athletic Hall of Fame on Saturday, Sept. 23.
The Class of 2017 includes:
- National basketball player of the year Merrill Brunson '02
- Wrestling Coach Dr. Walter "Wally" Iselin
- Volleyball record-breaker Kristen Shields Tenney '02
- Cross country and track All-American Justin Wells '02
- Softball academic All-American Jennifer Zell Soehner '95
The five will be honored at a dinner during the day on Sept. 23 and again at halftime of the home football game against Lakeland at 6 p.m. For tickets to the ceremony or more information, contact the Development and Alumni Engagement Office at 608-342-1181.
Brunson is the only Pioneer basketball player to receive the National Basketball Coaches Association NCAA Division III Player of the Year award for his 1998-99 season. He finished his career with 1,538 points, and helped the Pioneers to a 106-12 record and the last undefeated season (30-0 in 1997-98) in NCAA Division III history. He received the Final Four Most Outstanding Player award in 1999, and led the Pioneers to two straight NCAA III national championships. Brunson is the fourth all-time UW-Platteville leading scorer, holds the school record for most points scored in consecutive years (1,042), has the most 3-point shots made in a season (77), and has the highest three-point percentage in a career (47.5). The Richland Center, Wisconsin native graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor's degree in elementary education and teaches at Platteville Middle School.
Walter "Wally" Iselin
In his 13 years as head wrestling coach for the UW-Platteville Pioneers, Iselin coached 17 All-Americans, 28 conference champions and had an overall record of 65-15-1. In 1984 and 1987, he was voted as the Wisconsin State University Conference Coach of the Year, and is currently the winningest wrestling coach in UW-Platteville's history. In addition to serving as head wrestling coach from 1979-91, Iselin also served as an assistant football coach from 1979-86. In 1990, he was elected president of the Division III National Wrestling Coaches Association. Iselin, who retired as professor of physical education and health, director of Clinical Experiences and coordinator of the Master of Science in Education program, received the College of Liberal Arts and Education 2010 Outstanding Service Award.
Kristen Shields Tenney
Tenney is currently in the UW-Platteville volleyball record book in seven different areas. At the end of her career in 2001, she had the record for most kills (1,384), most services aces (208) and most digs (1,973). She still holds the career aces and digs records to this day. Tenney is the only player in the history of UW-Platteville volleyball to be in the top four for career kills, aces and digs. She was named WIAC Honorable Mention twice and was a Third Team Academic All-District by the College Sports Information Directors of America. She also was named academic all-conference and an All-American National Student Athlete. The Montfort, Wisconsin native graduated summa cum laude with a degree in business administration.
As a track and field participant, Wells set 13 school records in individual events ranging from the 800- to the 3,000-meter runs. In addition to track and field, he also led the Pioneer's men's cross country team to its first-ever NCAA national cross country meet experience. The team finished 10th, still the third highest team finish in UW-Platteville history. Wells earned all-conference, all-region and All-American honors for his performances in cross country and track. He earned all-conference academic honors, Gabe Miller academic honors, and graduated magna cum laude with a degree in industrial technology management. In addition, Wells joins his sister, Keri Wells Meverden, into the UW-Platteville
Athletic Hall of Fame making them the first brother/sister duo to be inducted.
Jennifer Zell Soehner
A standout for the Pioneer softball team, Soehner's maiden name of Zell is throughout UW-Platteville's record book. She was the first UW-Platteville softball player to be awarded all-conference for all four years. She holds the fourth place school record for career hits (147), second for RBIs (104), and is tied for third in triples (12). In addition to her success on the softball field, Soehner graduated magna cum laude with a degree in elementary education. She was named a CoSida Academic All-American and a WIAC Scholar Athlete in 1994, and received her Masters of Arts in Education at Viterbo University in La Crosse, Wisconsin. The Whitewater, Wisconsin native is now a reading specialist in the Fort Atkinson School District.
Written by: Amanda Bertolozzi, Writer/Editor, Communications, 608-342-7121, email@example.com