Florida Tech Inducts Four Into Sports Hall of Fame
By Florida Tech // February 2, 2013
Florida Tech Hall Of Fame Inducts Four Stars
BREVARD COUNTY • MELBOURNE, FLORIDA – During an elegant evening, packed with special memories, Florida Tech inducted four new members and one team into the university’s Sports Hall of Fame on Friday, Feb. 1 in the Hartley Room at the Denius Student Center on the FIT campus.
Bino Campanini, Vice President of Alumni Affairs, brilliantly conducted the evening’s festivities as Master Of Ceremonies and introduced the university’s President, Dr. Anthony Catanese who proudly extolled the successes of the institution’s expanding athletics program which competes in the NCAA Division II.
Inducted into the hall were former women’s rower Dr. Valerie Barber (’78), men’s soccer players Eddie Enders (’93) and Fidgi Haig (’92), men’s tennis player Khalid Outaleb (’87) and the 1992 Baseball Team will enter as the Class of 2013.
Dr. Valerie Barber-World-Class Rower
Barber helped pave the way for women’s rowing at Florida Tech. Despite admittedly not knowing the sport of rowing when she arrived in 1974, she rowed all four years for the Panthers.
As a member of the women’s varsity eight, she rowed the seven seat to three state championships and two south region championships. The varsity eight also experienced success on the biggest stage, the Dad Vail Regatta.
The Panthers won two silver medals and one bronze during her tenure.
Barber and a women’s four also earned a fifth-place medal at the Head of the Charles in Boston in the women’s team’s first-ever appearance.
She says the highlight of her career came during her senior year in 1978. Barber helped form an eight composed of the top women’s rowers from Florida Tech, UCF and Tampa.
They faced a boat from Vesper Boat Club in Philadelphia composed of women from the national team and past Olympians. Barber’s boat won by more than two boat lengths.
She had her sights set on joining the Peace Corps upon graduating with an oceanography degree from Florida Tech in 1978. However, her passion of rowing steered her to a different path.
Barber made the U.S. rowing team and earned the five seat in the women’s eight. At the World Championships, she and Team USA finished fourth.
Two years later in 1980, Barber became a U.S. Olympian by earning a seat in the women’s four. She was scheduled to compete in the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow, but USA was one of 65 countries to boycott the games because of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.
Barber is now an assistant research professor with the University of Alaska Fairbanks at the Matanuska Research Station in Palmer, Alaska.
Eddie Enders – College Soccer Star
After earning a spot on the team as a walk-on, Enders played a key role in the success of Florida Tech’s men’s soccer team from 1990-93.
As a forward, he scored 74 goals in 86 games and contributed 60 assists for 208 career points.
Enders helped the Panthers win the program’s second NCAA Division II National Championship in 1991.
Florida Tech would go on to capture three region championships and three Sunshine State Conference Championships in the four years he played at FIT.
During the Panthers’ second national title, Enders punched the Panthers’ ticket to the national championship game by scoring two late second-half goals in a 2-1 win over Franklin Pierce.
His senior season in 1993 was special. Florida Tech went undefeated for the first and only time in school history at 19 wins, zero losses and one tie.
Enders left his mark in the NCAA Division II record book. In 1992, he led Division II in assists with 22. He finished second in Division II in goals with 27 and points with 76 in 1992.
He currently ranks among the top 20 in Division II in eight statistical categories. He is sixth all-time with 60 career assists and single-season assists at 22. He is seventh all-time with 208 career points.
Enders is just one of 19 Division II men’s soccer players to achieve 40 goals and 40 assists in a career.
When he accomplished the 40-goal, 40-assist feat, he was just the sixth player at the time.
In the Panthers’ record book, he ranks second with 74 career goals and 208 career points. Florida Tech Sports Hall of Fame member Richard Sharpe currently holds both of those records.
Enders also ranks third with 60 career assists behind Hall of Famers Chris Payneand Steve Freeman.
He finished his career as an All-American, a two-time all-region honoree and first team all-state selection, and three-time All-Sunshine State Conference Team member.
In 2003, he was named to the Sunshine State Conference Men’s Soccer Silver Anniversary Team as one of the conference’s best 24 players in its first 25 years.
Enders graduated from Florida Tech in 1993 with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering. He is now an advanced products engineer at Harris Corporation.
Fitzgerald “Fidgi” Haig – World- Class Goalscorer and Coach
Over the years, Haig has become well acquainted to winning in Brevard County.
His journey started as a four-year player on Florida Tech’s men’s soccer team.
In 58 games, Haig scored 45 goals and handed out 18 assists for 108 points as a forward from 1987-90.
When the Panthers needed him, Haig had a tendency to rise to the occasion. He scored game-winning goals in two NCAA Division II South Region Championships.
He also helped Florida Tech claim its first men’s soccer national title with the game’s first goal in a 3-2 win over California-State Northridge in 1988.
Teammate and Florida Tech Sports Hall of Fame member Robin Chan scored the Panthers’ second goal. Eddie Grosso’s header two minutes into the second half proved to be the game-winner.
Haig scored a career-high 16 goals his freshman season to lead the entire Sunshine State Conference. In 1988, he tied Florida Tech Sports Hall of Fame member Steve Freeman for the team lead with 14 goals.
When his collegiate career ended, Haig was a two-time all-region and all-state player. He was also selected All-Sunshine State Conference three times in four years.
He currently ranks fourth in program history with 45 career goals, fifth with 108 career points and ninth in single-season goals with 16 in 1987.
His playing career led him to become a legendary girls soccer coach at Satellite High School. In nine seasons, he won two state championships, appeared in four Florida High School Athletic Association Class 3A State Championship games, won five District 9 Championships and seven Cape Coast Conference Championships.
He produced several Division I athletes, including 2004 Gatorade National Girls Soccer Player of the Year, goalkeeper Ashlyn Harris, and several national team players.
He finished with a record of 231 wins, 18 losses and eight ties. His .941 winning percentage currently ranks fourth among high school girls soccer coaches in Florida.
Haig has received many honors for his coaching accomplishments. In 2005, he was named United States Youth Soccer Adidas National Coach of the Year.
He has also been selected Coach of the Year by the Orlando Sentinel, Florida Today, Florida Youth Soccer Association, Florida Dairy Farmers and his peers along the Space Coast.
He returned to his alma mater of Florida Tech as the head women’s soccer coach in 2005. In eight seasons, he has become the winningest coach in program history with a 78-45-22 overall record.
His teams have had seven winning seasons, won the program’s first Sunshine State Conference and NCAA Division II South Region Championships and advanced to four NCAA Division II Tournaments.
In 2010, the Panthers appeared in the NCAA Division II Final Four and finished as the fourth-best team in the Division II national rankings. During the 2011 season, Florida Tech was ranked as high as No. 1 in Division II for the first time.
Haig earned his bachelor’s in business administration from Florida Tech in 1992.
Khalid Outaleb – International Tennis Star
Outaleb made a name for himself as a men’s tennis player at Florida Tech from 1983-86. He finished with a 76-12 record at No. 1 singles.
As a walk-on from Morocco, he quickly became the Panthers’ No. 1 singles player his freshman season and it was a role he never relinquished. He was named All-American all four years in singles.
He also competed in the NCAA Division II Tournament each season and ranked among the top players in Division II.
Outaleb won the Sunshine State Conference Singles Championship in 1984 and 1985. His 1985 season was nothing short of incredible.
He went undefeated in regular-season play, winning 21 straight matches. He finished his career in 1986 ranked 10th in singles in Division II.
In Morocco, Outaleb was the top-ranked player from 1984-88, winning Morocco’s National Championship in singles two times.
He was a member of his country’s Davis Cup Team for six years. In that span, he won 14 matches, lost just three and had seven ties in Davis Cup play.
Outaleb was named to the Sunshine State Conference Men’s Tennis Silver Anniversary Team in 2003.
He was recognized as one of the conference’s 13 best singles players in its first 25 years.
He graduated from Florida Tech in 1987 with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering. He is now an insurance adjuster consultant in Morocco. He remains involved with tennis as a member of the Moroccan Tennis Association Board and as tournament director of the Casablanca Tennis Open.
1992 Florida Tech Baseball Team.
The 1992 Baseball Team’s accomplishment as one of the top teams in the 50-year history of Florida Tech baseball is even more amazing considering the adversity it overcame.
Injuries to several starters and a difficult start to the season did not prevent the Panthers from making history.
Led by head coach Les Hall, Florida Tech went on to win the program’s first NCAA Division II South Atlantic Region Championship and advanced to the final eight of the NCAA Tournament.
When the dust finally settled, Florida Tech finished the season with a 28-22 overall record.
Ranked 22nd in the nation and No. 3 in the South Atlantic Region, the Panthers upset nationally ranked No. 5 South Carolina-Aiken 6-4 in the first game of the regional tournament.
Alan Greene came through with a bases loaded single in the top of the ninth inning. Jeff Faino won his fourth straight in his ninth complete game, scattering six hits and retiring 13 straight hitters from the first through sixth innings.
In the following game against nationally-ranked No. 2 Armstrong Atlantic State, Florida Tech had to rally.
Trailing 5-1 in the fourth inning, Phil Campbell cracked a two-run double andMark Venditti hit an RBI groundout to tie the game. Venditti delivered again in the sixth inning with a two-run single to break the tie, leading to the 7-5 win. Scott Buzza earned the win, pitching 7 2/3 innings of four-hit relief.
Florida Tech met South Carolina-Aiken one more time in the South Atlantic Region Championship. Down 2-0, Joel Stephens hit grand slam. The Panthers would go on to win 7-2 and advance to the championship portion of the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history.
Campbell was named Outstanding Player of the South Atlantic Regional. Scott Brown, Jeff Driskell, Faino, Mike Hannon, Stephens and Venditti were also named to the All-South Atlantic Region Tournament Team.
However, the Panthers magical season was a total team effort, with every member providing major contributions. The pitching staff was phenomenal, recording a 2.68 ERA. Individually, Faino was superb on the mound, with a 2.48 ERA in 19 appearances. Faino pitched in a team-high 145.1 innings, recording a team-high 112 strikeouts. Buzza added a team-high 23 appearances, all in relief, with a team-best 1.90 ERA. Greene chipped in five victories and a 2.82 ERA.
At the plate, Venditti led the team with a .293 batting average. Driskell provided the power with a team-best nine home runs. Driskell’s 29 extra-base hits led the club as well. Hannon contributed seven stolen bases and 19 RBIs.
Also contributing to the historic season was Dustin Divitto, Charles Dwyer, Bryan Facterman, Brad Given, Fred Hood, Andy Keith, Pete Labbe, assistant coach Paul Ouellette, Dacks Rodriguez, trainer Ray Rodriguez, Dave Schwefler and Chad Shoultz.
Twenty seasons have elapsed since the baseball team’s historic season. The 1992 team’s achievement remains the best in program history.