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Ti Hall of Fame to induct new members

TICONDEROGA A state champion leads the athletes to be inducted into the Ticonderoga Booster Club Hall of Fame this year. Andrea Staepel, who won the girls 800-meter state championship for Ti High in 1998, will be inducted along with Kevin Thompson, Tommy Tucker and Jay Wells. Also being honored this year will be the Ti High 1951 baseball team. The inductees will be honored at a dinner Friday, Sept. 26, at 5 p.m. at the Ticonderoga Knights of Columbus and again at halftime of that nights homecoming football game against Moriah. Staepel began running for Coach Dave Rutkowski while in seventh grade. She was a Section VII champion in both cross country and track, setting Ti High records for 800 and 1,500 meters in track. In 1998 she became Tis second-ever state champion, winning the 800-meter run at the state track meet. After graduating from Ticonderoga High School in 1998 Staepel attended SUNY-Plattsburgh to study mathematics. While at Plattsburgh she ran cross country and track, setting Plattsburgh records at 500-meters indoors and 4x400 outdoors. Staepel is now a math teacher at Tamarac Middle School in the Brittonkill Central School District. She hopes to soon become a cross country and track coach. Thompson played football, basketball and baseball at Ti High. He earned all-conference honors while helping the Sentinels to championships in basketball and baseball. After graduation Thompson went to Adirondack Community College, where he played basketball. He was named the teams Most Improved Player in the 1994-95 season. From ACC he went on to SUNY-Utica/Rome, where he played basketball and baseball. In basketball he averaged 10 points nd seven rebounds a game as Utica/Rome reached the State University of New York Athletic Conference tournament for the first time in school history. In baseball he posted a 3.18 ERA and batted .245 to help Utica/Rome to its first-ever winning season. Thompson Lives in Norwalk, Conn., with his wife, Jill, and daughter, Morgan. He is an executive account manager for Hypertype, a medical transcription company based in Lake George. Tucker, a 1992 graduate of Ticonderoga High School, participated in football and track. During his senior season in football, Tucker rushed for 968 yards on 135 carries and averaged 7.2 yards/carry while scoring 18 touchdowns to help the Sentinels to a 6-3 record. Other highlights include kick-off returns for touchdowns of 75 and 95 yards. Tucker also excelled as a sprinter in track and field, winning a section championship at 200 meters as a senior. Tucker attended Hartwick College for one year and started at tailback for the Warriors. He then joined the U.S. Marine Corps and served six years. In 2000, during his tour as a Marine embassy guard in Finland, Tucker started playing football for an ama- See HALL, page 11 teur team, the Helsinki Roosters. He helped the team win national championships in 2000, 2002, 2004 and a bronze medal in 2005. During the 2004 season with the Roosters Tucker rushed for 953 yards on 112 carries and scored 20 touchdowns in 9 games which earned him the Maple Leagues Most Valuable Player award. He also set a team single game rushing record in gaining 345 yards on 31 carries versus the Pori Bears. Tucker is now a competitive bodybuilder. He resides in St. Petersburg, Fla., and works as a fitness coach for City Fitness in Bradenton, Fla. Wells graduated from Ti High in 1998. While in high school he was a stalwart cross country and track runner. He finished second in the state cross country championships twice and third another time. In track he claimed a pair of second place finishes at the state meet. He set school records at 1,600 and 3,200 meters. His runner-up finish in the 1998 state 3,200-meter race was a highlight of the meet. He missed the title by less than a second and his time of 9 minutes, 10 seconds for two minutes was a school record and the 10th fastest time in the nation that year. At SUNY-Plattsburgh Wells ran to conference championships in track, indoor track and cross country. Wells is now a social studies teacher at coach at Ti High. This spring he coached Lee Berube to state championships at 1,600 and 3,200 meters. Berube broke Wells 3,200-meter record, but not his 1,600 mark. Wells is married to the former Kristina Charboneau. They have a daughter, Gracie Marie, and live in Ticonderoga.

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