UM-Presque Isle, UM-Machias announce athletic hall of fame inductees

Posted Sept. 20, 2011, at 9:21 p.m.

Longtime cross country coach Chris Smith, former field hockey and basketball standout Gail Fitzmaurice and former cross country star Evan Graves have been selected for induction into the UMPI Athletics Hall of Fame.

The trio will be honored Sept. 24 at 5 p.m. during a banquet and ceremonies at the Campus Center.

This fall marks the 25th season as the Owls cross country coach for SMITH, who earned undergraduate degrees from UMPI in physical education in 1983 and phys ed teaching in 1988.

Smith has directed UMPI cross country teams to 19 championships, including Sunrise Conference women’s titles from 2008-10. He has garnered coach of the year accolades 11 times, among them the last three seasons.

Smith also has served as the advisor for UMPI’s hockey and track and field clubs. He is active in the Maine running community as a race director and triathlete, cross country coach and martial arts instructor.

He earned a master’s of education from the University of Maine in 2002.

FITZMAURICE earned a bachelor’s in health, physical education and recreation in 1985 after a successful career in field hockey and basketball.

In 1983, she led the state in assists in field hockey and went on to earn all-star recognition. She also was a top rebounder and interior defender for UMPI’s basketball team for two seasons.

Fitzmaurice, now an avid cyclist, was a phys ed and health instructor in Bingham, where she also coached varsity girls soccer, basketball and softball. She also did a stint as an athletic administrator, was the recreation director in Hollis, and worked as a soccer and basketball official.

The Skowhegan native, a member of her high school field hockey hall of fame, now works as an orthotist at Maine Orthotic and Prosthetic Rehab Services of Portland.

GRAVES, a Mount Desert Island native, is among the most accomplished cross county runners in UMPI history. He was the Maine Athletic Conference Runner of the Year in 2000, 2001 and 2002.

The 2003 graduate with a B.S. in physical education logged 22 career top-three finishes for the Owls. He went on to become a marathoner, finishing third once in Philadelphia and winning at Manchester City.

Professionally, Graves has remained in Aroostook County. He teaches at Caribou High School, where he is an assistant Nordic skiing coach. He is the cross country head coach and assistant track coach at Caribou Middle School.

He recently completed his master’s degree in educational leadership at the University of Maine.

UMM INITIATES ATHLETICS HALL OF FAME

The University of Maine-Machias has announced the formation of the UMM Clipper Athletics Hall of Fame.

UMM established the hall of fame to recognize former student-athletes and coaches who have demonstrated extraordinary performance and achievement while at the school.

“We look forward to recognizing student-athletes and coaches who have done great things for this program,” UMaine-Machias athletic director Brac Brady said in a press release. “We have a rich history of individual and team success and we now have a way to honor all of that in a permanent way.”

The inaugural UMM Athletics Hall of Fame induction ceremony will take place Sept. 24 at 5:30 p.m. in the Reynolds Center Gymnasium as part of UMM’s Homecoming and Family Weekend.

Inaugural inductees include Dana Colwill (Class of 1983), Frank McGrady (’84), Barbara Thompson (’86), Mike Bottalico (’86), Todd Middleton (’91), Tracey Kershner (’91), Andrew Meredith (’93) and the late Nathan Turk.

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