Hall of Fame
This project started about seven months ago at a Northern California Handball Association Hall-of-Fame meeting. Joe McDonald brought up the idea that we should research and write extensive profiles on each of our hall of fame members. He also wanted to match pictures with these profiles. The board agreed and decided our objective would be to put this on our NCHA web page so all could review and download this information. As a committee we wanted to dig deep into our handball history, especially for pre-1930 players and contributors, so we could better appreciate their skills and their contributions to our great game of handball.
It was a collective effort of many people. The sources of our information came from: The Handball Book, The Olympian, The Olympic Clubs news magazine, The AAU Ace publication that ran amateur handball before 1951, after 1951 stories from Ace and Handball magazine the official publication of the United States Handball Association, the Scoop magazine the official publication of the Northern California Handball Association, and many interviews from players, contributors, and tournament directors. Much of our data came from old stories and
traditions passed down from generation to generation.
Bill Conlon, president of the Northern California Handball Association, gave the go ahead for this project and it was officially born. Bill entered the pictures and biographies of the players and contributors on the NCHA web site. Bernie Samet the director of handball operations at The Olympic, handball historian and writer of many of the handball stories was a major contributor to this work. Rudy Stadlberger spend much time and effort researching and writing biographies. Jim Tamagni supplied twenty years of the official NCHA news letter the Scoop. Many stories were taken from handball players and contributors that have passed away such as Martin Judnick, our most famous handball historian, Bill Keyes, and Bob Kendler founder of the USHA. Others that contributed and wrote stories were Tom Sove, Cas Sove, Jay Capell, Vern Roberts, Tom Hall, Cherylann Mendonca, Rick Christian, Jim Tamagni, Joe McDonald, Janet Paulson, Blake Fontenary, Pete Garri, Chico Aguiar, UC Handball Club Tournament Committee, Lou Cartegena, Don Davis, Dennis Berger, Al de la Torre, Sol Aber, and John Tarantino.
I tried to give credit for all the stories by posting the author and source of the information as best I could. It was an exciting endeavor, because I learned much about the pre 1950 players and the hardships they encountered because of long and hard travel, harsh playing conditions, and the problems of the depression years. The pre USHA players were small in numbers, but tremendously skilled and would have given the pros of today all they could handle.
January 7, 2004
The 2015 NorCal Hall-of-Fame Doubles Tournament completed last weekend at the San Mateo Elks Lodge with our latest HoFer David Wyrsch and his brilliant partner Lennart Delatorre winning (yet) another Open Doubles title. The young lions got defeated by "Old Man Strength". They walked off the court, tossing a bottle of Old Spice to their young competitors. Roy Buckstein, Al Sandoval, and David Wyrsch were inducted this year, all well deserving for their long careers and dedication to keeping handball traditions alive.