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Twelve inducted into Baltimore Catholic League Hall of Fame

The 2016 inductees to the Baltimore Catholic League Hall-of-Fame are (l-r): Pat Maggio, contributer Cardinal Gibbons, Paul Feeley, Loyola Blakefield 1971, Keon Chavez, St. Frances 1995, Rodney Gibson, St. Maria Goretti 2001, Bessie Black, mother of Norman Black, Cardinal Gibbons 1975, Leroy Keller, Archbishop Curley 1980, James "Pop" Tubman, Calvert Hall 1982, Jeff Cross, Mount Saint Joseph 1976, Danny Robinson, Towson Catholic 1991, and coach William Wells, St. Frances.
The 2016 inductees to the Baltimore Catholic League Hall-of-Fame are (l-r): Pat Maggio, contributer Cardinal Gibbons, Paul Feeley, Loyola Blakefield 1971, Keon Chavez, St. Frances 1995, Rodney Gibson, St. Maria Goretti 2001, Bessie Black, mother of Norman Black, Cardinal Gibbons 1975, Leroy Keller, Archbishop Curley 1980, James "Pop" Tubman, Calvert Hall 1982, Jeff Cross, Mount Saint Joseph 1976, Danny Robinson, Towson Catholic 1991, and coach William Wells, St. Frances. (Kenneth K. Lam / Baltimore Sun)

Legendary St. Frances boys basketball coach William Wells, who founded the school's program and spent 28 years at the helm before stepping down in 2008, recalledthe many coaching clinics he attended back in the day to polish his craft — a trip to Indiana that included lunch with coach Bobby Knight a highlight.

Every last bit of education, every edge was needed to compete in the storied Baltimore Catholic League.

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Tuesday night, Wells and 11 others gained another memory to cherish as the latest inductees into the league's Hall of Fame at a ceremony at Turf Valley Resort in Ellicott City.

Wells became the fourth coach inducted and joining him were nine players — Norman Black, Cardinal Gibbons, 1975; Keon Chavez, St. Frances, 1995; Jeff Cross, Mount Saint Joseph, 1976; Paul Feeley, Loyola Blakefield, 1971; Rodney Gibson, St. Maria Goretti, 2001; Leroy Keller, Archbishop Curley, 1980; Danny Robinson, Towson Catholic, 1991; Derrick Snowden, Archbishop Spalding, 2000; and James "Pop" Tubman, Calvert Hall, 1982 — along with Cardinal Gibbons graduates Pat Maggio (1969) as a contributor and Jean Fugett (1968) as a pathfinder.

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Wells called it "one of the greatest nights" for him. He said not only did he become the first African-American coach to be inducted, but three players he coached at either the youth or high school level — Chavez, Robinson and Tubman — were honored alongside him.

Wells recollected the fierce tests that came on a regular basis in the BCL and how it helped shape what the league is today.

"When I came in you had guys like Jerry Savage and Cokey Robertson — legendary coaches — and to compete against them, you had to bring your A game and if you don't, you're going to get blown out," said Wells, who won 500-plus games and six BCL championships.

St. Joseph University men's basketball coach Phil Martelli served as the ceremony's keynote speaker.

The Hall's inaugural class came in 2011 and now new chapters are inducted every two years.

Here's a closer look at the BCL Hall of Fame Class of 2016:

Players

Norman Black, Cardinal Gibbons '75: Averaged 19.7 points and 13.7 rebounds as a senior to earn All-Metro, All-State and All-Catholic League honors. Moved on to have a stellar college career at St. Joseph's, where he left as the program's second all-time leading scorer with 1,726 points.

Keon Chavez, St. Frances '95: Three-year starting point guard was floor general for the Panthers, who won consecutive BCL titles in his junior and senior years. Went on to play at Frostburg State — named captain and team's Defensive Player of the Year — before closing out career at Coppin State.

Jeff Cross, Mount Saint Joseph '76: Surpassed 1,000 points in three-year career for the Gaels before moving on to James Madison. At JMU, set freshman records for assists in a game (16) and season (156) to highlight a fine four-year career. Also played two varsity baseball seasons at Mount St. Joe.

Paul Feeley, Loyola Blakefield '71: Came to Loyola Blakefield as a 5-foot-8, 110-pound freshman and left at 6-4, 190 with hard work and two standout varsity seasons in between. Went on to enjoy a fine career at Randolph Macon, finishing with more than 1,200 points and 600 rebounds.

Rodney Gibson, St. Maria Goretti '01: Left as the program's second all-time leading scorer with over 1,500 career points, behind North Carolina St. great Rodney Monroe. Averaged 18 points, 8.2 rebounds in senior year to earn BCL Player of the Year honors and lead Gaels to first league title. Enjoyed four-year career at St. Francis (Pa.) University.

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Leroy Keller, Archbishop Curley '80: One of the area's finest jump shooters during his time, averaged 15 points in his senior year to earn All-Metro honors. Also versatile with 210 rebounds, 117 steals and 132 assists in two varsity seasons. Went on to enjoy fine career at Washington College, named All-Southeast Conference as a senior.

Danny Robinson, Towson Catholic '91: Averaged 18 points and nine assists in his senior year to lead the Owls to their first BCL title. Earned All-Metro and All-BCL honors and then went on to play two years at Cal State Fullerton, where he averaged eight points and four assists for his career.

Derrick Snowden, Archbishop Spalding '00: Enjoyed four-year career at Spalding where he left as the program's all-time leader in points (1,404) and assists (695), named Metro Player of the Year and BCL Player of the Year as a senior. Went on to play three seasons at Villanova, averaging 10.4 points and 3.9 assists as a sophomore.

James "Pop" Tubman, Calvert Hall '82: Three-year standout was regarded as the school's greatest point guard, was floor general on Cardinals' 1982 national championship team. Program's all-time assists leader in three-year career, team went 91-5 from 1980-82. Earned All-Metro and All-BCL honors as a senior.

Coach

William Wells, St. Frances: Founded the school's boys basketball program and won 516 varsity games before stepping down after 28 seasons in 2008. Won six BCL tournament championships, two Maryland Interscholastic Athletic Association A crowns and the coveted Alhambra Catholic Invitational Tournament title in 1996.

Contributor

Pat Maggio, Cardinals Gibbons '69: All-Metro guard averaged 15 points per game as a senior before playing at Bucknell and UMBC, where he was named Outstanding Athlete of the Year for his 1974 graduating class. Went on to coach 38 seasons for BCL schools, including 13-year stint as Mount Saint Joseph head coach.

Pathfinder

Jean Fugett, Cardinals Gibbons '68: Basketball and football standout at Cardinal Gibbons, went on to play eight seasons in the NFL for the Dallas Cowboys and Washington Redskins. In his senior year, became the first African-American to be named Baltimore Catholic High School Athlete of the Year, awarded by the Catholic War Veterans.

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