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Guelph Sports Hall of Fame welcomes five

The Guelph Sports Hall of Fame is welcoming five new inductees for 2014.

The inductees were announced on Wednesday.

The induction ceremony will take place during the annual Kiwanis Sports Celebrity dinner on the evening of June 18 at the Italian Canadian Club.

Inductees are:

• Bob ‘Whipper’ Watson (athlete category)
Watson is regarded as one of the best goaltenders ever to play indoor lacrosse. His ability to step up in big games is what sets him apart from the rest and he is the National Lacrosse League (NLL) all-time saves leader, winning more than 100 games.

He was named NLL Goaltender of the Year in 2001 and 2008. In 2003 and again in 2011 he was named championship game MVP. He has led the Toronto Rock to six NLL championships.
In 2011, he became only the third goaltender to be inducted into the NLL Hall of Fame.

• Thomas McKenna (veteran athlete category)
McKenna started his baseball career pitching in the Guelph Schools Baseball League for St. Stanislaus – earning a 7-0 shutout in his first game. He went on to become a key member on several championship teams during the 1940s at school – bantam, juvenile, and junior intercounty levels.

He played junior and senior intercounty baseball into the 1950s and eventually coached senior intercounty baseball after trying out for the St. Louis Cardinals.
McKenna  was also a successful right winger, helping the St. Stanislaus school hockey club win the Guelph Schools Hockey League, Worton Trophy, Separate Schools Title, and William Walsh Cup. He was part of the 1946 Guelph Junior Lions Group Seven OHA Junior B championship team.

• Rob Holody  (builders category)
At age 24, Holody became the youngest general manager to ever win a Memorial Cup, with the 1986 Guelph Platers. He has chaired numerous OHL committees, been a volunteer coach with Guelph minor hockey and baseball and has been a supporter of Guelph Community Living, ARC industries and Special Olympics.

The captain of the 1982 Guelph Platers Centennial Cup finalist team, Holody was also a member of the 1982-83 OUAA championship Wilfrid Laurier hockey team and UAU semi-finalists.

 • James King (officials category)
King refereed all levels of hockey for 28 years including the AHL, starting in the late ’40s. He also held all executive positions in the Ontario Hockey Association (OHA), except chairman of the board and he served as an international representative for the OHA.

King played Junior A hockey in the early ’40s and was drafted by the Toronto Maple Leafs, where he played six games before joining the navy to serve Canada in the Second World War.
King also umpired senior fastball for 15 years with the intercity Ontario Amateur Softball Association league.

• 1960 Kiwanis juvenile baseball team (team category)
The Kiwanis juvenile baseball team and their ace pitchers Ron Nichols and Jim Ferguson had a memorable summer in 1960.

They secured the juvenile intercounty championship and went on to become the Ontario Baseball Association (OBA) provincial champions, making them the first team in Guelph to win the provincial juvenile title since 1940.

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