JASON HOLDER ('70): After graduating from Exeter High School in 1966, Jason Holder enrolled at Plymouth State College, where he soon became a mainstay on PSC’s fledgling wrestling team. Behind Holder’s leadership, the PSC grapplers soon established themselves as forces to be reckoned with, and in 1969 coach Doug Wiseman’s matmen were New England State College Athletic Conference champions.
In fact, it wasn’t until his final intercollegiate match, in February of 1970, that Holder tasted defeat for the first time on the wrestling mats.
But Holder did more than help establish PSC wrestling as a viable varsity sport. He was also a prime mover behind the development of PSC’s varsity football program. Although the first varsity Panther gridiron contest was played in the autumn of 1970, after Holder had graduated, Holder’s role in making football a reality at PSC was a major one.
Holder was a standout on the club football teams of the late 1960’s, and won MVP honors in 1969. But his greatest contributions may have occurred off the field, where he and others worked tirelessly to gamer the support necessary to field a team. That PSC football went on to enjoy national acclaim in the 1980’s is due is no small part to the efforts of Holder and his contemporaries. The MVP of PSC’s annual Homecoming Day football game still receives the coveted “Jason Holder Award.”
PATTY MORGAN HOOD ('79): Patty Morgan was a standout defender and tri-captain for the undefeated 1979 New England champion Plymouth State College women’s lacrosse Panthers. Her role as a leader and source of inspiration was crucial to her team’s success, which was unprecedented at the time.
Following the 1979 New England Lacrosse playoffs, Morgan was named to the all-tournament team and was also named “Most Valuable Defensive Player.”
After leaving Plymouth, Morgan returned to her native Berlin, N.H., where she became head field hockey coach and where she also married former PSC basketball standout, Bin Hood.
As a field Hockey Coach, Patty Morgan Hood compiled one of the top records in the country, putting together an overall mark of 151-19-33 from 1979-91, a record which included state titles in 1983, 1984, and 1987. Her Mountaineer teams were state runners-up in 1981 and 1986.
JACK LYNCH ('60): A native of Groveton, N.H., Jack Lynch came to Plymouth Teachers College in 1956 where he soon established himself as a three-sport standout.
Lynch was a key player on Coach Howard Goldman’s successful soccer teams of the late fifties. He also played tennis for Goldman in the spring, and soon established himself as one of the region’s top singles players.
But in the winter Lynch found time to play basketball for the legendary John C. Foley. He captained the only PTC team ever to win a New England Teachers College Athletic Conference title (in 1959). Lynch Graduated from PTC in 1960 as the all-time leading men’s basketball scorer with 961 points.
After leaving Plymouth, Lynch went on to teach and coach at Laconia High School from 1960-66. From1967-80 he served as Director of Guidance at Merrimack Valley High School in Penacook. He simultaneously coached girls’ tennis at Gilford High School, where his teams won six state titles.
Lynch went on to spend several years in Europe as a Guidance Counselor at American schools. He earned a PH.D., at the United Kingdom Campus of Columbia Pacific University in 1986.
JANET NELL: Janet Nell arrived at Plymouth State College in 1967 to begin a teaching and coaching career that would leave an indelible mark on the institution’s Departments of Athletics and Physical Education.
Besides carrying a standard teaching load, Nell coached basketball, field hockey, lacrosse, soccer, and tennis at various times during her tenure at PSC. Indeed, when her memorable coaching career ended after and exciting 9-8 women’s lacrosse victory over Bridgewater State College on May 1, 1988, Nell could look back over two decades of wonderful coaching experiences. While her coaching career included many victories and several championships, Nell’s proudest legacy may well be the positive impact her approach has had on the scores of young women who played for her.
A native of Harrisburg, Penn., Nell graduated from West Chester State College in 1953. She then spent six years teaching and coaching on the junior and senior high school level in Chambersburg, Penn. Nell moved to New England in 1959 when she accepted a position at Bates College in Lewiston, ME. She remained at Bates until accepting a position at PSC in 1967.
Besides coaching and teaching, Nell has served PSC in other capacities as well, including a stint as an administrator for women’s athletics.
But while Nell’s coaching whistle has been put away for several years now, her role in helping to foster the growth of women’s athletics was a very significant one. She was indeed a pioneer of sorts. Nell’s role in helping to establish women’s lacrosse as a varsity sport was especially significant, and it is fitting that she should be inducted into PSC’s Hall Of Fame as an individual on the same evening that the undefeated 1979 women’s lacrosse Panthers are honored as a team.
JANICE BURKE WILLIAMS ('81): The scoring exploits of Janice Burke for Coach Janet Nell’s Plymouth State College women’s lacrosse teams of the late seventies and early eighties were all but unsurpassed. As a sophomore on the undefeated 1979 team, Burke’s total of 18 goals was second only to senior Laurie William’s 19 tallies.
Burke’s scoring pace would pick up her next two years, and she would graduate with 106 career goals (still fourth all-time). The Panthers laxwomen flourished under Burke’s leadership as PSC followed up its banner 1979 season with 7-2 and 10-5 records the next two years.
Burke was also a standout on Coach Dot Diehl’s field hockey teams. Burke played a defensive position for Diehl, but her contributions to field hockey may be measured in part by the fine records the hockey teams compiled during the three years that Janice was on the squad.
After graduating from PSC, Burke went on enjoy a career as an educator, a career which included three years in Germany as a Defense Department school and two years at a college preparatory school in Goldsboro, N.C.
1979 Women’s Lacrosse Team: PSC's undefeated (11-0) Division II New England Champions Defeated Springfield College for Title in First-ever Women’s Athletic Event held in the Yale Bowl.
Front Row (l-r): Liz Votolato, Kelley Springer, Laurie Williams, Patty Morgan, Leslie Freeman, Diana Grant
Back Row (l-r): Patty Caton, Cathy London, Meg Pickett, Susan Seely, Janice Burke, Assistant Coach Walter Warner, head coach Janet Nell, Carrie Rossiter, Kelli Riley, Judy Curley, Nancy Cote, Julie Ghioto