LEGENDS, TRAIL BLAZERS GAIN ENTRANCE INTO COQUITLAM SPORTS HALL OF FAME
Coquitlam’s Sports Hall of Fame will enshrine a trio of trendsetters as the class of 2020.
Joining the community’s celebration of sport are basketball’s Rich Chambers, soccer’s Geri Donnelly and hockey’s Darcy Rota.
The three – Donnelly as an athlete, Chambers and Rota in the builders’ category – will be inducted alongside the class of 2019 at a virtual ceremony to be held on June 16, 2021.
Donnelly was a member of Canada’s first women’s national soccer team, recording the first two goals in international play in a 2-1 win over the U.S. in just their second game together. She would go on to play 72 games for Canada over 13 years, including serving as captain at the 1999 World Cup.
Chambers elevated and shaped the game of basketball as a coach over nearly 50 years behind local, provincial and national team benches. On the international stage, the Coquitlam resident spearheaded the Canadian women’s program to six World championships, including thrilling FIBA under-19 women’s victories over Australia and the United States.
Rota, a member of the Vancouver Canucks alumni, was the driving force in bringing junior hockey to Coquitlam in 2001. He and the Coquitlam Express original ownership group skillfully stickhandled past skeptics and roadblocks to put a B.C. Hockey League team into the Poirier Sports Centre. As the club’s first general manager and president, Rota helped many players achieve college scholarships and a handful reach the ultimate dream of playing in the NHL.
The three will be inducted alongside the 2019 Coquitlam Sports Hall of Fame class of athletes Brittany (Timko) Baxter and Dave McKay, the 1987 Coquitlam United women’s soccer team and builder Sohen Gill.
Due to the Covid pandemic, the Wall of Fame annual honours will not be presented for the year 2020. Upon an anticipated return to competition for provincial sports bodies in the near future, the Wall of Fame awards will recommence to celebrate the efforts and achievements of local athletes and teams.
The Coquitlam Sports Hall of Fame is located in the entrance foyer of the Coquitlam Poirier Sport and Leisure Complex, 633 Poirier St.
For more information, contact CSHOF president Cydney Smythies at email@example.com, or visit www.coquitlamshof.com.