Huntington University inducts 3 men, ‘84 women’s hoop team into sports HOF

Huntington University inducted three individuals, Alex Kock, Kyle Ganton and Joe Harding, and one team, the 1984 women's basketball team, into the Forester Athletic Hall of Fame on Saturday, Nov. 10.

The induction ceremony took place at the Habecker Dining Commons at 11 a.m. Inductees were also recognized at halftime of the Huntington men's basketball game later in the day.

Kock was honored for his contributions to the Huntington basketball program during the years of 2004 to 2007. Kock came in as a sophomore, having transferred to Huntington after spending his freshman year at Wright State University.

Kock was at or near the top in scoring and rebounding in the Mid-Central Conference all three years, which led to his MCC Player of the Year honors in each of his three seasons as a Forester.

As a sophomore, he earned NAIA Second Team All-America honors and received First Team honors his final two seasons. During his junior year, Kock led HU to a runner-up finish at the 2006 NAIA Division II Men's Basketball National Tournament where he was named to the All-Tournament team.

He capped off his career by earning the program's first NAIA Division II National Player of the Year award. During his three years at Huntington, Kock scored 2,182 points and grabbed 924 rebounds while helping lead the Foresters to three MCC regular season titles, three NAIA Tournament berths and an 83-22 record.

Ganton was honored for his contributions to the Huntington basketball program during the years of 2003-2007.

For his career, he shot 51 percent (712-1393) from the field and 45 percent (220-493) from behind the arc. He graduated from Huntington holding the school record for best free throw percentage in a career at 88.6 percent and highest 3-point field goal percentage in a season at 49.7 percent.

As a sophomore, he earned Second Team MCC All-Conference honors and was NAIA Honorable Mention All-America. In his junior year, Ganton was selected to the NAIA All-America Second Team and was instrumental in the Foresters' runner-up finish at the NAIA Division II National Tournament where he was named to the All-Tournament team.

During his final campaign, he was runner-up in the MCC Player of the Year voting to earn First Team honors and repeated as an NAIA Second Team All-American.

Ganton, who is a member of the most successful class in Huntington's history with 108 wins against 31 losses, finished his career with 2,126 points placing him sixth on the Foresters' all-time scoring list. He is one of only five Foresters to have played in four national tournaments.

Harding was honored for his significant contributions to Huntington's men's soccer program during the years of 1984-1991.

Harding came to Huntington College in 1984. During his seven years as a coach, he guided Huntington to two conference titles, two NCCAA District III Championships, two NAIA District 21 Championships and two NCCAA National Tournament appearances.

He coached his 1989 team to 20 wins, the most wins in school history. He wrapped up his Huntington career with 89 wins against 47 losses and four ties. His 65 percent winning percentage ranks him among the top ten most successful coaches in the history of Forester athletics.

While at Huntington, fellow coaches honored Harding as conference, district and national coach of the year on 12 different occasions. In 2006 the National Intercollegiate Soccer Officials Association presented Harding with its highest award, the NISOA Honor Award. He was also the recipient of the NCCAA's Frank Jewell Merit Award in 2009 and the following year was named to the NCCAA Hall of Fame.

The 1984 women's basketball team was honored for the legacy it left on Huntington's basketball program. The squad made history by bringing home Huntington's first NCCAA National Championship.

After receiving an at-large bid to the tournament, the second-seeded Foresters squeaked by host Tennessee Temple and Lee College before knocking off top-seeded Spring Arbor for the title. Led by Becky Stump's 20 points and 10.5 rebounds per game, the Foresters finished the season with a 24-9 record.

They outscored their rivals by more than 11 points per contest. By season's end, the Foresters also dominated the program's record books. The 1984 team claimed 11 of the 13 team records including most wins in a season with 24, most rebounds in a season with 1,281 and most points in a season with 2,439 which still stands today.

Members of the team included Tammy Newsome Blomeke, Kim Armand Sexton, Melodie Cripe Winans, Lori Culler, Jana Harding-Bishop, Sabra Newsome McComb, Julie Oak, Lori Sander Thomspon, Beck Stump Younce, Lori Williams Shaw, Deanna Worden, Lisa Cook Brookens, Keith Freeman (head coach) and Ann McPherren (assistant coach).