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Historic Celebrations Highlight Hoops Saturday
02.17.14 |

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The Lebanon Valley College basketball doubleheader on Saturday featured a pair of historic celebrations for both the men’s and women’s squads. The men celebrated the 30th Annual Hot Dog Frank Day, while the women retired the first jerseys in program history.

During halftime of the men’s game, Joe Shemeta ’52 and Anne Shemeta ’51 were presented with the 2014 “Hot Dog” Frank Athletic Service Award. The Shemetas are long-time enthusiastic supporters of LVC athletics and the College as a whole. Part of a family with more than 35 graduates of LVC, they have been involved in virtually every aspect of campus life since the 1950s.

For many years, they ran the “Oldtimers” golf tournament to support LVC athletics, and were involved in the Alumni Council and scholarship committees. For decades, they have been dedicated fans of LVC student-athletes, musicians, and theatrical performers. Their dedication and loyalty to the LVC athletics family exemplify the ideals put forth by Hot Dog Frank.

The “Hot Dog” Frank award originated in 1985 to honor the late Frank Aftosmes (1902–1994) by the LVC administration for his many contributions to the Lebanon Valley athletic program. Aftosmes was an Annville businessman and devoted supporter of Lebanon Valley College athletics whose statue now stands in the College’s Peace Garden.

The LVC Athletic Booster Awards Committee felt that others who exemplified Aftosmes’ enthusiastic support for the athletic program deserved special recognition. Since its establishment in 1985, 26 individuals have been honored.

During halftime of the women’s contest, Steph Tighe Sutton '03 and Andrea Hoover '11 were honored as the first women's basketball players to have their jerseys retired on the LVC Gymnasium wall. Each former student-athlete was presented with their framed jersey and had the honor of pulling the sheet to unveil each of their banners in the LVC rafters. Watch highlights of the ceremony here.

"I couldn't be more excited, not only to have my jersey hang in the rafters forever, but to share this honor with Andrea," Sutton said. "I was fortunate enough to coach her for two years and I couldn't be luckier to finally put women on the wall in LVC Gymnasium and to share it with the best athlete."

"It's really incredible," Hoover added. "I was very thankful to have Steph as a coach during my time at LVC and I'm really honored to be able to share this moment with her today."

Sutton and Hoover are the program's only two all-Americans and each earned MAC All-Century team honors a year ago. Their jerseys join the five men's basketball retired jerseys – Howie Landa '55, Don Johnson '73, Mike Rhoades '95, Andy Panko '99, and J.D. Byers '05 – already hanging in the rafters.

Sutton was the first Dutchman to be named an all-American when she did it as a senior in 2002–03. She is LVC's all-time leading scorer with 1,663 career points, and sank a record 597 field goals and 385 free throws in her career. She also owns the record for points in a game when she hit for 42 against Moravian in 2002.

A 2013 inductee to the LVC Athletic Hall of Fame, Sutton was a four-time all-Commonwealth Conference selection and spent two years as an assistant coach for the Dutchmen from 2006 to 2008, including a role in recruiting Hoover and the class that led LVC to its first CC title.

Hoover, currently an assistant coach with the team, earned WBCA/State Farm and All-American honors as a senior in 2010–11 while being named the Regional Player of the Year. The point guard led LVC to its first Commonwealth Conference title and an NCAA Elite Eight run in 2011, and was a three-time first-team all-CC selection.

Hoover remains LVC's all-time assists leader (586), was a two-time CC Player of the Year, and ended her career with 1,170 points.

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