Class of 7 set to be inducted into county's hall in Oct.


Pack a lunch if you plan to attend the fourth Anne Arundel County Sports Hall of Fame Induction ceremony on Oct. 20 at Michael's Eighth Avenue in Glen Burnie.

Despite a selection committee recommendation several years ago that there be a maximum of five inductees in a given year, the Hall of Fame Board of Directors voted seven into this year's class, bringing the total of honorees to 20 in four years.

Those to be honored are Clayton "Buddy" Beardmore, Glenn Warner, Claxton "Okey" O'Connor, Jerry Mears, Hymy Cohen, Lew Holmes and Paul Rusko.

Beardmore, Warner and O'Connor are in other halls of fame. Beardmore is a member of the Severn School, University of Maryland and National Lacrosse Foundation halls.

Warner is in the National Soccer Coaches Association and Maryland State halls, and O'Connor was inducted into the National Lacrosse Foundation Hall of Fame.

Beardmore, who is athletic director and men's lacrosse coach at Anne Arundel Community College, made his mark as a lacrosse player and coach.

After a brilliant high school career at Severn, Beardmore became a three-time All-American midfielder at Maryland. He returned to his high school and college as a coach.

Beardmore coached Severn from 1963 to '65 before taking his first college job at Hobart (1966-67) and then moving on to the University of Virginia (1968-69) and finally back home to College Park in 1970.

Leading the Terps for a decade, Beardmore was 168-54 and took his team to the national championship game six times, winning the title twice, in 1973 and 1975. The Beardmore Terrapins won the Atlantic Coast Conference seven times.

Beardmore also coached Team USA to a World Games Championship in 1974. He left Maryland and coaching in 1980, but returned to the bench in the mid-'80s as general manager and coach of the Washington Wave indoor lacrosse team.

Five years ago, Beardmore landed at AACC as athletic director and took over the lacrosse program one year later.

Warner, who first coached Maryland to an 8-0-2 record in 1941, led the Navy men's soccer team for 33 years and upon his retirement in 1975 was the winningest soccer coach in collegiate history, at 251-65-33.

Nine of Warner's teams qualified for the NCAA playoffs, and in 1964 his Mids won the national championship by 1-0 over Michigan State after finishing runner-up the year before. Warner also served on the U.S. Olympic Committee three times and coached an armed forces team in the 1956 Olympic trials.

O'Connor's name is synonymous with amateur lacrosse and, along with Mears, will be posthumously inducted. O'Connor, who died in 1991, coached for 46 years.

Boys' Latin in Baltimore was O'Connor's first stop as a coach, and he won 100 games or more in three sports -- basketball (342), lacrosse (200) and football (107) -- in his 30 years there.

O'Connor moved to Glen Burnie High in 1961 and transformed the Gophers into a lacrosse powerhouse, winning county titles in 1972 and 1973 before retiring in 1976. He wasn't retired long and was soon coaching the East Glen Burnie Youth Lacrosse Club that he founded.

Mears, who died in 1988, is one of four Anne Arundel County football coaches to win 100 games or more and one of two to win a state title.

Credited with bringing the wing-T offense to the county, Mears was 129-68 in 22 years at Arundel and Meade from 1965 to 1987 with a state title at Arundel in 1975.

Mears coached Arundel basketball 12 years and made it to the state semis three times before becoming athletic director and football coach at Meade in 1977. Mears was also active in the Anne Arundel County Coaches Association and Maryland State Football Coaches Association.

Still writing weekly golf and bowling columns and organizing charity golf tournaments, Cohen is an Annapolis legend who has been with The Capital newspaper since 1934. His career began while he was still attending high school.

After graduating from Annapolis High in 1934, Cohen coached a host of recreation teams and founded the Annapolis City Recreation Department, directing all rec programs for more than 20 years. During that time, he organized the area's first integrated sports leagues.

Cohen became a part-time sports editor at The Evening Capital in 1940 and associate sports editor in 1952, and retired as a full-time writer in 1982.

Holmes has given more than 20 years of volunteer service to amateur baseball, starting in the Linthicum-Ferndale Youth Athletic Association. He founded the Anne Arundel Amateur Baseball Association in 1976 and was its president until 1993.

Holmes served as a state and regional director for the Continental Amateur Baseball Association from 1986 to '92, bringing 14-and-under and 18-and-under World Series to the county. He was recipient of the Maryland State Baseball Coaches Association Man of the Year Award in 1988 and the Friends of Joe Cannon Committee Outstanding Service Award last year.

Rusko worked in the county school system for more than 20 years, most notably as the coordinator of physical education. A former executive secretary of the Maryland Public Secondary Schools Athletic Association, Rusko is credited with elevating the county's physical education program.

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