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March 17, 2010


The University of Maine at Fort Kent will host its third annual Athletic Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony on Saturday, April 24 in Nadeau Hall teleconference room.

Four individuals, as different from last year’s inductees as they are from one another, comprise the third class of the Hall of Fame.

Following on the heels of two very successful classes before it, the inductees of the UMFK Athletic Hall of Fame Class of 2010 is a distinguished group in its own right: Bernard “Bunny LaPlante, Juan G. Hernandez and Dana M. Lemon.

Each of the three individuals to be inducted had a big impact on Bengal athletics as an athlete, and has made contributions off the field and court, since.

The HOF ceremony begins at 5 p.m. with a social followed by a banquet and awards ceremony.  Tickets for the banquet are $20 per person and may be purchased through the Alumni Affairs office at 207-834-7557.  

Bernard “Bunny” LaPlante (’66) was the first, four-year varsity basketball player in the history of Fort Kent State Teachers College; a career in which he scored 1,275 points while playing guard. LaPlante played for legendary coach Lowell “Ozzie” Osgood (HOF ‘08), and as a teammate of Terry Drown (HOF ’09). Bunny served as team captain each year. Bunny also played three years on the school’s first soccer teams (1963-65), which was Northeast College Conference co-champs in ’64 and champs in ’65. He captained the squad his junior year. Off the field, LaPlante was president of the Class of 1966.

Juan G. Hernandez (’88) played four years at the point guard spot for the Bengals under head coach Larry Murphy (HOF ‘08), and alongside Jeff Pillsbury (HOF ’09), scoring 1,034 career points. Juan was a highly-accurate threat from beyond the three-point perimeter, where he led the entire state of Maine in three-point shot percentage during his junior year. The San Juan, Puerto Rico native was named three times to the conference’s first team; led the conference in assists during the 1985-86 campaign; was named to three, all-tournament teams; and was named the Bengal’s Most Valuable Player in 1985-86.

Dana M. Lemon (’07) was a four-year starter at point guard for the UMFK women’s basketball team from 2003-2007. During that span, the lady Bengals won 66 games. She captained the team for three seasons. An extremely unselfish player, Lemon could dominate a game without ever scoring a point. She singlehandedly changed the mindset of the women’s basketball program at the University. Twice named as the Sunrise Conference’s Player of the Year; named to three all-conference teams; led the Bengals to two conference titles; and is the all-time women’s career leader in assists and steals.

The inductees were selected by a nine-member committee comprised of UMFK Alumni Association representatives Beurmond Banville, Larry Murphy, and Emery “Legs” Labbe; Athletic department representatives, Eric Werntgen and Lucas Levesque; student/athlete representative, Kristen Violette; and faculty representative, Leo Trudel. The committee was co-chaired by UMFK Athletic Director, Bill Ashby, and UMFK University Relations and Alumni Affairs Director, Terence Kelly.

For more information, or to purchase tickets, please contact the Alumni Affairs office at 207-834-7557.