The Chapman University Donald P. Kennedy Athletics Program will induct four standout student-athlete alumni into Chapman’s Hall of Fame. The inductees are the 39th Hall of Fame class to be honored as important players in the University’s athletic history.
Men’s tennis champion and six-time All-American Troy Turnbull ’86, former basketball standout Toby Curto ’97, two-time softball All-American Maggie Wilder Werner ’07, (MA ’12) and three-time All-American and school record-holder Jillian Felger-Mabee ’09 comprise Chapman’s Hall of Fame Class of 2020.
The Hall of Fame Class of 2020 will be enshrined beside fellow Chapman legends during the 2020 Night of Champions on October 23, 2020 and at the plaque unveiling during halftime of the football game on the following day.
A Return to an Annual Celebration
Previously held every other year, the upcoming fall ceremony marks the official return to an annual “Night of Champions” Hall of Fame celebration. From 1980 until 2013, the Hall of Fame inductions were held annually. Over the past six years, the Athletic Department refocused the event by creating sponsorship opportunities and bringing in dynamic keynote speakers.
“The feedback we received last fall is it is such a powerful and pride-filled event. We didn’t want to wait two years to do it again,” says Doug Aiken, associate director of athletics. “With the success of our Panther teams over the past 25 years we now have a backlog of highly successful candidates we’ll need to induct in future years. It was time to get moving!”
The 2020 Champions
The 2020 Hall of Fame Class celebrates a variety of sports and honors athletes from 1986 to 2009 — nearly 20 years of excellence.
Troy Turnbull ’86 helped pioneer Chapman’s NCAA Division II men’s tennis dynasty of the late 1980s. He was a four-time All-American in singles and a two-time All-American in doubles. Thanks to Turnbull, the Panthers finished in the top-10 in the nation in all four of Turnbull’s seasons and won their first of three NCAA Division II national titles in 1985. Turnbull led the Panthers back to the championship in 1986 for a national runner-up finish.
“Of all the men’s tennis players that are in our Hall of Fame, Troy might have been the best and most tenacious,” says Aiken.
Toby Curto ’97 was a four-year starter and 1,000-point scorer for Chapman’s men’s basketball team during its transition from Division II to Division III. Over 20 years later, he still ranks in the top-10 for career scoring average during Chapman’s Division III era. As a two-time All-Region selection, Curto helped the Panthers achieve 65 wins in his four years, as well as a winning record in every season of his undergraduate career.
“Toby will be the first Division III men’s basketball player we induct and it’s fitting because he was here through the transition from Division II to III and was the prototypical DIII student-athlete — strong academically, a good leader, high character and he was an All-Region talent,” reflects Aiken.
Maggie Wilder Werner ’07 is a two-time All-American and three-time All-Region selection in the circle. Her 47 career wins and 361 career strikeouts rank third all-time at Chapman while she ranks fourth in complete games (46) and shutouts (18). With Wilder in the circle, the Panthers advanced to the NCAA Tournament four times and won their Regional twice, placing third in the nation in 2005.
“Maggie was the pitching staff ace for all four years on a team that made the playoffs each year and won two regional titles,” says Aiken. “Besides her statistical accomplishments and All-American honors, she was a fierce competitor whom you could always rely on in the big games, against the best teams and she was a leader her teammates respected the heck out of.”
Jillian Felger-Mabee ’09 is one of the most accomplished volleyball student-athletes in Chapman’s Division III history. She was a three-time All-Region and three-time All-American selection as a middle blocker for the Panthers. She also earned Academic All-American honors as a senior, making her the only volleyball player in Chapman’s history to be named an All-American and an Academic All-American. She still tops the Chapman record books with a .344 career hitting percentage and a .381 hitting percentage in her junior year while ranking second all-time with 3.72 kills per set and third with 1,148 total kills.
“Jill was this unassuming superstar, a model of consistency and excellence,” says Aiken. “She was better than anyone — before or since — at finishing the play, with the highest hitting percentage in school history, in spite of the fact that she was undersized at 5-feet-10 for the position she played: middle blocker.”