A former major league pitcher, the first standout county high school girls softball player, a wrestler who went on to become a Big Ten champion and an All-American lacrosse goalie make up the 17th Anne Arundel County Sports Hall of Fame induction class.
The four honorees will be announced today and inducted at a banquet Oct. 17 at Michael's Eighth Avenue in Glen Burnie.
All are graduates of high schools in the county: pitcher Denny Neagle from Arundel, pitcher Amy Jakubowski from Chesapeake, wrestler Larry Avery from the former Brooklyn Park High School and goalie Jack Schofield from St. Mary's.
This year's class, which increases the hall's membership to 79, will be joined by retired Annapolis athletic director Fred Stauffer. He will be the County Executive Award recipient for his continued involvement and support of county high school sports.
Neagle, was a Sun All-Metro pitcher and Anne Arundel County Sun Player of the Year in 1986, his senior year, as a left-handed pitcher at Arundel High School. Neagle was 9-1 with a 1.02 ERA in his senior year for a team that was 20-1. His and the team's only loss to eventual Class AA champion Woodlawn by 3-2 in Region IV came in the semifinals.
Neagle received a baseball scholarship to the University of Minnesota.
After his junior year at Minnesota, Neagle was chosen on the third round by the Minnesota Twins in 1989, pitching in the minor league system for 2 1/2 years. Neagle was called up to the Twins in 1991, was traded to Pittsburgh in 1992 and to Atlanta in 1996. He pitched his first World Series for Atlanta. In 1997, he went 20-5 with a 2.97 ERA with the Braves, finishing third in the Cy Young balloting.
From there, Neagle went to Cincinnati for nearly two seasons and then on to the Yankees in 2000, earning a World Series championship ring with the Yankees.
He signed a five-year $51 million contract with the Colorado Rockies in 2001. Consistent arm problems with the Rockies and later in 2005 with Tampa Bay led to his retirement.
Jakubowski was a four-year varsity player at Chesapeake High School. She was The Sun's Anne Arundel County and All-Metro Softball Player of the Year in her senior year, 1991, winning her third state championship in four years.
After going 10-2 with a perfect game and two no-hitters and batting .507 with four homers and 26 RBIs, Jakubowski went on to great success at Furman University in Greenville, S.C. She was a four-year starter and was inducted into the Paladins' Hall of Fame last year.
The athletic windmiller ranks second at Furman in career wins (68), strikeouts (502), shutouts (28) and complete games (99).
Avery ranks as one of Anne Arundel County's Top 10 all-time wrestlers. Undefeated in his last three seasons at Brooklyn Park and winning a state championship in 1970, his senior year. Avery went on to become a Big 10 champion and All-American at Michigan State University in 1975.
Placing sixth in the NCAA Tournament and named the Spartans' Most Outstanding Wrestler in 1975, Avery finished as a finalist in the United States Olympic heavyweight trials in 1976. That same year, he earned a silver medal at the Tbilisi Tournament in Russia.
Schofield, a 1961 graduate of St. Mary's High School, was an All-County standout not only in lacrosse, but football as well. He is a member of the Saints' Hall of Fame.
Schofield was an All-American lacrosse goalie at the University of Maryland in 1965 and earned the prestigious C. Markland Kelly Award that same year. He was a standout goalie for the Terps over three seasons.