On April 23, West Chester University will host its first Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony in nearly three years. Jackie Baker, Jackie Borkowski (Kiriposki) and Max Bernardes will headline the 2022 West Chester University Athletics Hall of Fame Class, which will also honor the 2011 and 2012 women’s field hockey teams.
Baker was a member of the women’s lacrosse team from 2005 to 2008. During her illustrious career as a Golden Ram, she was a four-time PSAC champion, and amassed a total of 371 points, including 255 goals and 116 assists. In 2008, she recorded a total of 126 points, which ranks her fifth in all-time PSAC history behind fellow Golden Rams, Stephanie Kienle, Kathleen Sheehan and Erika Baker.
Borkowski attended West Chester from 2006 until 2010 and was a member of the women’s swimming team throughout all four years. After an impressive freshman year, she was named PSAC rookie of the year and received All-American honors. She went on to win several individual titles during her tenure, including three in 2010. After her career as a Golden Ram, she competed in the US Olympic trials in 2012, where she finished in 86th place overall, beating her initial seeding of 119th place heading into the event.
Bernardes burst onto the scene during his freshman year in 2006, when he won the 400 individual medley, placed second in the 500 freestyle, and third in the 1650 freestyle at the PSAC championships. He was a nine-time All-American swimmer during his time at West Chester, winning two individual PSAC championships and was a member of one championship relay team. He broke several PSAC records, including times in the 1000 freestyle, 400 individual medley and his 800 free relay team broke a record as well.
The 2011 women’s field hockey team finished with a 17-4 record, capturing the NCAA Championship with a 2–1 victory over UMass-Lowell. It was the Golden Rams’ first season under head coach Amy Cohen, and it was the first time that West Chester competed at a Division II level in the sport. The 2012 team followed this up with a 20–2 record and advanced to their second straight National Championship, a rematch against UMass-Lowell. The Golden Rams once again emerged victorious, with a decisive 5–0 win, delivering a perfect sequel to a Cinderella 2011 campaign.
Edward Weichers, West Chester alumni and legendary boxing coach, will be honored with the WCU Lifetime Achievement Award at the ceremony. During his tenure as a Golden Ram, Weichers won the 190-pound championship in 1973. Following his graduation from West Chester, he was the head coach of the United States Air Force Academy from 1976 until 2014, where he led the team to 19 boxing championships. He created a dynasty with the Air Force, and the team is now known as one of the most successful boxing programs in the United States.
The ceremony honoring these athletes and teams will take place starting at 6:30pm at the ballrooms in Sykes Student Union, located at the center of West Chester University’s main campus.
For more information on the event, including ticket sales and registration details, visit the West Chester University Foundation website.
Erick Klambara is a Media & Culture major with a minor in Journalism. EK924666@wcupa.edu