ST. BONAVENTURE, N.Y. – John Hayes '69, Eboni Preston Laurent '08 and Jo Storms Scattergood '98 were honored as the newest members of the St. Bonaventure University Athletics Hall of Fame in an induction ceremony Saturday morning at the Reilly Center.
"Of all things, this is about as humbling as it could possibly be," Hayes said. "Nothing compares to it. I've been in some other hall of fames, but this is the best one."
Hayes spent part of his induction speech recalling memories of playing on one of the University's most famous teams, the undefeated 1968 squad, of some of his Hall of Fame teammates – and of sinking the first basket in the Reilly Center.
After watching a group of construction workers setting the very first basket in place in the new building, Hayes quickly took his chance at a once in a lifetime opportunity.
"We would walk in during the construction process," he recalled. "I just happened to come in after playing basketball outside so I had a ball with me. I patiently waited while the basket was being installed. Once they pushed it up, I walked up and made the first shot ever in the Reilly Center and the rest is history. There's no question that the workers who had just completed that task were less than thrilled with me. They wanted the first basket."
A member of one of the most famous St. Bonaventure basketball teams in school history, Hayes joins the Hall of Fame during the program's Centennial Season. The Niagara Falls native was a key part of Bona's "Ironman Five," a starting lineup that hardly ever checked out of the game during an unforgettable 1967-68 campaign that saw the Brown and White finish a perfect 22-0 during the regular season. The squad added a 23rd consecutive victory with an NCAA Tournament win over Boston College to rise to a No. 3 ranking in the national polls.
The third-leading scorer on that team, Hayes shot better than 53 percent from the floor and averaged 13.5 points and 6.8 rebounds that year, behind only Bob Lanier and Bill Butler in both categories. That junior campaign came as a massive bounce back season for Hayes after suffering a devastating knee injury as his sophomore season began. Prior to his injury, Hayes was seen as one of the best prospects in program history – including the legendary Lanier. In his freshman year, Hayes led all freshmen nationwide in scoring with 34.7 points per contest, edging out Lew Alcindor for the national lead.
With his induction, Hayes becomes the final member of the Ironman Five to be enshrined in the Hall of Fame, joining Butler, Lanier, Jim Satalin and Bill Kalbaugh.
Legendary Bonaventure head coach Larry Weise said of Hayes following his career, "As a freshman, nobody on the varsity team could stop him. If he hadn't gotten hurt, he would have been right up there with Tom Stith and Bob Lanier as Bonaventure's best players."
Hayes graduated from St. Bonaventure in 1969 with a degree in business management.
John Hayes '69 recalls making the first basket at the newly built Reilly Center (then University Center) during his days as a standout for @BonniesMBB.— Bonnies Athletics (@GoBonnies) February 1, 2020
Hayes took his spot in the St. Bonaventure Athletics Hall of Fame this morning ���� pic.twitter.com/nQ08LVgVo3
During her induction speech, Preston Laurent read a letter she had written to her freshman self about the moments that were to come and shape her life while at Bonaventure.
"You'll embrace the underdog mentality because that's all we know at Bonaventure," she read. "You'll be overlooked but you'll thrive in those moments because that's the Bonaventure way. You wouldn't want to do this ride called college with anyone else."
Preston Laurent is near the top of every goalkeeper stat category in Bonnies women's lacrosse history.
She is the program's all-time leader in career wins (26) and games started in net (48) and her 540 saves rank third in Bona history. She was honored as the Atlantic 10 Women's Lacrosse Defensive Player of the Year following a senior season that saw her post 12.1 saves per game, leading all Division I goaltenders that season. She finished the year with 170 saves including a conference-best .541 save percentage, a figure that ranked second nationally.
As a junior, she started every game and earned Atlantic 10 All-Conference Second Team honors after leading the A-10 in saves per game (10.47) and ranked third in save percentage (.494). Her 15-save performance vs. George Washington in the semifinals of the conference tournament that year also earned her a spot on the A-10 All-Tournament Team.
In 2006 as a sophomore, she was Honorable Mention All-Conference with a 9-2 record in the cage, standing second in the league with 8.58 saves per contest as she helped the Bonnies to a program-record 14 wins. During her freshman season, she led all A-10 goalies and ranked 12th in the nation with a .531 save percentage.
Eboni Preston Laurent '08 reads a letter to her freshman self as part of her induction to the St. Bonaventure Hall of Fame this morning �� pic.twitter.com/RDQ5m8XmJX— Bonnies Athletics (@GoBonnies) February 1, 2020
She received her degree in Journalism/Mass Communication in 2008 and later moved into the coaching ranks, picking up a Masters of Education while serving as a graduate assistant coach at Endicott College. She then coached as an assistant at Emerson College for a season before taking head coaching duties at Sweet Briar College. In 2013, she was named the first-ever Senior Manager of Diversity and Inclusion at US Lacrosse, the national governing body for the sport. Her work there and as a coach led to her selection as one of The Baltimore Sun's "Top 40 Women To Watch" in 2014. Along with her US Lacrosse duties, she continues to serve as a volunteer coach in the Baltimore City Middle School Lacrosse League.
Storms Scattergood turned in one of the top careers in Bonnies women's soccer history.
"I want to thank St. Bonaventure for the amazing four years I had here. I don't know how to explain how I feel. It means so much to be back here," she said during her induction speech.
She ranks in the program's top 10 in career goals (29, sixth) and points (65, seventh) and she earned Atlantic 10 First Team accolades following both the 1994 and 1996 seasons.
A stellar player from the time she first donned the Brown and White, she was the team's Rookie of the Year in 1994 and her 20 points tallied that year rank fifth in school history for a freshman.
"I want to thank St. Bonaventure for the amazing four years I had here. I don't know how to explain how I feel ... it means so much to be back here."— Bonnies Athletics (@GoBonnies) February 1, 2020
Jo Storms Scattergood '98 accepted her spot in the St. Bonaventure Athletics Hall of Fame this morning ��️ pic.twitter.com/hb8gflvMRP
A standout in the classroom as well, during her collegiate career her success academically resulted in three straight selections to the Atlantic 10 All-Academic Team between 1995 and 1997.
Team captain during her senior season, she was a nominee for the 1998 NCAA Woman of the Year award and received one of St. Bonaventure's highest honors when she was named the 1998 Bonaventure Ideal Woman. After exhausting her eligibility on the soccer pitch, she ran cross country during the 1998 fall season as well.