NCAA News Archive - 2008

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Wittenberg remembers coach with renamed arena

Feb 5, 2008 1:03:36 AM

The NCAA News

Just eight months after losing women's basketball coach Pam Evans Smith to cancer, Wittenberg remembered her tenure at the school Saturday by renaming its arena in her memory.

A number of Smith's former players attended the dedication ceremony, which featured remarks by President Mark H. Erickson and Wittenberg athletics administrators and coaches.

One of those former players and Smith's successor as head coach, Sarah Jurewicz, remembered the many hand gestures she and her teammates saw Smith use during games.

"(Her hands) said to each and every one of us, be confident, have high expectations, be proud, stay determined, be focused, have fun, be self-assured, stay precise, achieve, strive, celebrate," she said.

"Forevermore, in this arena named in her honor, her hand always will be capped on the top of every (team) huddle, just as it should be, saying 'I'm cheering for you.' "

Smith compiled a 401-170 record through 21 seasons at Wittenberg, where she also had served as associate director of athletics and senior woman administrator since 1992. Her record and winning percentage was tops among North Coast Athletic Conference women's basketball coaches.

Her husband, Roger Smith, thanked attendees for honoring his wife's love for Wittenberg by naming the arena in her memory.

He also told the assemblage that donors have given more than $60,000 since he established the Pam Evans Smith Memorial Scholarship fund six months ago -- enough to provide scholarships for two Wittenberg senior women students beginning in fall 2008.

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