Spring 2014 Magazine - Immaculata University - page 25

honored with a
The championship Immaculata University Mighty Macs of the early
1970s have been nominated to be inducted into the Naismith Memo-
rial Basketball Hall of Fame in Springfield, MA. The Class of 2014 will
be announced during the NCAA Division I Men’s Final Four held the
weekend of April 5-7 in Dallas, Texas.
Led by Coach Cathy Rush, the Mighty Macs won the first three
women’s college basketball championships in 1972, 1973, and 1974, and
Immaculata is considered the Birthplace of Modern College Women’s
Basketball. Rush is a Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame
Inductee, Class of 2008. Her record at Immaculata was 149-15. She also
had six Final Four appearances from her 1970-1977 coaching tenure with
the Mighty Macs. In addition to the national championships, the Mighty
Macs were the first women’s team, along with the University of Maryland,
to appear on national TV; the first women’s team, along with Queen’s
College, to play at Madison Square Garden, and the first women’s college
team to play outside the country (Australia in 1974). Their inspirational
story was made into a feature-length theatrical movie called
The Mighty
and released by Sony Pictures in 2011.
Several Mighty Macs earned special recognition for their achieve-
ments while players. Theresa Shank Grentz was named a three-time
All-American in 1972, 1973, and 1974 and scored 1,167 career points and
952 rebounds. Marianne Crawford Stanley was also named a two-time
Kodak All-American in 1975 and 1976 with a career 747 total points and
an astonishing 544 assists. Mary Scharff, a 1977 Kodak All-American,
scored 1,235 total career points with 583 rebounds and 284 assists. Rene
Muth Portland earned three Outstanding College Athlete of America
awards and the New York Press All-American Citation.
Members of the teams became NCAA Division I head women’s bas-
ketball coaches including Grentz who was coach for St. Joseph’s Univer-
sity, Rutgers University and the University of Illinois and was named head
coach of the 1992 U.S. Olympic Women’s Basketball team, and president
of the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA). Stanley, who
has coached at both the collegiate and professional level, won three na-
tional championships as head women’s basketball coach at Old Dominion.
She is now a coach with the WNBA Washington Mystics. Portland was
the head women’s basketball coach at Penn State for 27 years where she
amassed a career resume that includes 21 NCAA tournament appearances
including a Final Four appearance.
1972 Team: Top Row, L to R: Coach Cathy Rush, Janet Young Eline, Sue Forsyth
O’Grady, Janet Ruch Boltz, Judy Marra Martelli, Rene Mack (student manager),
Inset: Betty Ann Hoffman Quinn; Bottom Row L to R: Maureen Stuhlman, Rene
Muth Portland, Patricia Opila Penater, Maureen Mooney, Theresa Shank Grentz,
Denise Conway Crawford
1973 Team: Top Row, L to R: Coach Cathy Rush, Maureen Stuhlman, Ann Sa-
dowski, Theresa Shank Grentz, Rene Muth Portand, Betty Ann Hoffman Quinn;
Bottom Row L to R: Janet Ruch Boltz, Marianne Crawford Stanley, Denise Conway
Crawford, Maureen Mooney, Janet Young Eline, Judy Marra Martelli
1974 Team: Top Row, L to R: Mary Scharff, Patricia Mulhern Loughran, Coach
Cathy Rush, Tina Krah, Marie Liguori Williams, Barbara Deuble Kelly; Bottom
Row L to R: Rene Muth Portland, Janet Young Eline, Theresa Shank Grentz,
Denise Conway Crawford, Marianne Crawford Stanley, Judy Marra Martelli
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