On Friday, Oct. 21, Albertus Magnus College inducted its Class of 2011 into its Athletics Hall of Fame. The newest members of the Hall of Fame include Natalia Perlaza, Jay Wyatt, Tim Russell and Candice Giordano Damico.
Friday night's induction ceremony kicked off Fall Fest Weekend at Albertus as the college welcomed alumni, family and friends to campus. Other athletic activities during the weekend included Albertus Madness and two Great Northeast Athletic Conference soccer matches against the Lasell College Lasers.
Hall of Fame Class of 2011:
Candice Giordano Damico '03
A volleyball and softball two-sport athlete, Candice Giordano Damico graduated from Albertus Magnus College in 2003 as one of the finest softball pitchers in the history of the program. As a freshman, she finished second in the nation with 9.7 strikeouts per game en route to being named to the Great Northeast Athletic Conference All-Conference Second Team for her efforts.
Giordano finished her career with the sixth-best Earned Run Average in GNAC history and earned GNAC All-Conference First Team honors in both 2002 and 2003. She also ranks third in GNAC history with a .744 all-time winning percentage. Giordano was named the team Most Valuable Player in 2002 and 2003 and served as a team captain during her senior year. She was also a captain for the volleyball team in 2001 and 2002 and was a member of the GNAC Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.
A 1999 graduate of Hamden High School in Hamden, Conn., Giordano was a four-year letterwinner at Albertus before graduating with a communications degree in 2003. Giordano went on to earn her Masters' degree in Elementary Education from the University of New Haven in 2005.
Giordano, who works as a fifth grade teacher, currently resides in Hamden with her husband John, who was also a two-sport athlete at Albertus, and their nine month old daughter, Gia.
Natalia Perlaza '05
Named the 2005 Great Northeast Athletic Conference women's basketball Player of the Year, Natalia Perlaza ended her career with 1,576 points, 1,114 rebounds, 322 steals, 205 assists and 129 blocked shots. She was one of the few student-athletes in GNAC history to earn First Team All-Conference honors four times, while at the time of her graduation, she was one of only three Albertus Magnus basketball players to record more than 1,000 points and 1,000 rebounds during her career.
Perlaza is the all-time leading scorer and rebounder in both GNAC and Falcons' history, while she still ranks first in the conference with 672 career field goals. She currently remains in the top-10 in two other GNAC categories including blocks (eighth-129) and steals (fourth-322).
A 2001 graduate of West Haven High School in West Haven, Conn., Perlaza graduated Magna Cum Laude from Albertus Magnus in 2005 with a degree in Management Information Systems and International Business.
Perlaza currently resides in Brooklyn, N.Y. and is employed by AlphaMetrix, listed as an Inc. 500 company buy Inc. magazine, in Manhattan. She also continues to study and teach Middle Eastern Percussion and has recently been invited to perform in the White House. Perlaza also played for the Columbian National Team in the summer of 2005-06.
Tim Russell '05
Tim Russell '05 graduated in 2005 from Albertus Magnus College as the all-time leading scorer in the history of the Great Northeast Athletic Conference (GNAC) as well as the Albertus men's basketball program. His 21.69 points per game average stands fourth-best in conference history as well.
In addition, Russell graduated holding the points per game record in GNAC play. He was named the 2005 GNAC men's basketball Player of the Year and earned All-Conference honors in 2003 and 2004. In 2005, he led the nation (Division I, II, and III) in scoring with 32.8 points per game. His efforts earned him a spot on the All-New England Team as well.
Russell graduated from Lewis Mills High School in Burlington, Conn. in 2001, where he scored 1,304 points during his high school career.
Russell is currently in his sixth year as a Police Officer in Bristol, Conn.
Jason "Jay" Wyatt '03
As a four-year member of the Albertus Magnus baseball team, Jay Wyatt posted a school-best .391 career batting average. His batting average stood as the third-highest average in Great Northeast Athletic Conference history upon his graduation and remains as the seventh-best after the 2011 season.
A 2003 graduate of Albertus Magnus College, Wyatt amassed a school and GNAC record of 214 career hits and 141 RBIs upon his graduation. As of 2011, his hit total remains the third-highest in conference history, while his RBI tally is the fourth best. Wyatt is a four-time First Team All-Conference selection and helped the Falcons to three consecutive GNAC Championship game appearances. He led his team to its first GNAC Championship title in 2003 with a 5-0 win over Western New England as the Falcons earned their first trip to the NCAA Tournament.
A 1999 graduate from West Haven High School in West Haven, Conn., Wyatt majored in Accounting at Albertus Magnus. He currently resides in Northford, Conn. with his wife of three years and their one year old daughter, Adilyn. He is employed as a Pepsico Sales Representative.