Fort Hays State University Athletics will enshrine several new members into the Tiger Sports Hall of Fame on Saturday, Oct. 31. The inductees include Jeff Bieker (baseball), Jayme Eichner (volleyball), Daryl Henning (wrestling), Jim Montgomery (track & field), Vicki Thom Smith (gymnastics), and Ed and Donna Stehno (contributors). The induction ceremony will take place at 10 a.m. on the morning of Oct. 31, at the Memorial Union Ballroom on the campus of Fort Hays State University. The inductees will also be recognized at 2:30 p.m., halftime of the football game vs. Nebraska-Kearney
Jeff Bieker - Baseball (2003-05)
Jeff Bieker, native of Hays played three years at Fort Hays State from 2003-2005 and did not play his senior year after getting drafted by the Oakland A’s in the summer of 2005. He is arguably the best hitter to ever play at FHSU as he tops the all-time lists in batting average (.421), home runs (58), and slugging percentage (.879). He is second all-time in RBI (191) and total bases (430) and would have easily passed those marks as a senior, had he opted to stay at FHSU. He was a three-time All-RMAC selection in the outfield, the 2003 RMAC Freshman of the Year, 2005 RMAC Player of the Year, 2005 West Region Player of the Year, 2005 All-America First Team selection by the NCBWA and a All-America selection by the ABCA in both 2004 and 2005. He hit a single-season school record 23 home runs in both 2004 and 2005, only one of two players with 20 or more homers in a season at FHSU. He led all NCAA divisions in home runs per game (.53) and slugging percentage (1.013) as a sophomore in 2004. He is the only player to ever slug over 1.000 in a season at FHSU. He led NCAA Division II in home runs as a junior in 2005. His .436 batting average in 2004 is also a single-season record at FHSU. He played for two years in the Oakland A’s minor league system.
Jayme Eichner - Volleyball (2001-04)
Jayme Eichner, native of Ogallala, Neb., is arguably the best setter and one of the best all-around players in FHSU Volleyball history, competing from 2001 to 2004. She owns the school record for assists with 5,878, over 3,000 more than the next closest player in FHSU history, NAIA or NCAA era. She averaged 12.61 assists per set for her career, helping the Tigers to back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances in 2003 and 2004. She was the catalyst for Fort Hays State’s best team in NCAA history in 2004, helping the Tigers to a record of 31-5 overall and a top-10 ranking in the nation. She helped lead FHSU to the regional final as a senior, falling just a win short of the Elite Eight. In 2004, she recorded an FHSU single-season record of 1,644 assists and she appears in the school’s top 10 list for all four of her seasons, recording 1,456 in 2002 (3rd), 1,454 in 2003 (4th), and 1,324 in 2001 (7th). She also owns the top three single-season assists per set marks in school history with 13.37 per set in 2004, 13.22 per set in 2003, and 12.34 per set in 2002. Her 11.51 mark in 2001 ranks seventh. She owns the top four single-game assist performances during the rally scoring era at FHSU, the best being 74 against Rockhurst in a 5-set match in 2003. She had three matches with 70 or more assists in her career. Along with being the table-setter for a potent offensive attack, she also thrived defensively by ranking fourth in career digs at FHSU during the Division II era with 1,393, averaging 2.99 per set. She also owns the school record for career service aces in the Division II era at FHSU with 153 and the single-season rally scoring era record with 44. Eichner was a four-time All-RMAC selection, including first-team honors as a senior. She was also an all-region first team selection as a senior.
Daryl Henning - Wrestling (1978-82)
Daryl Henning, native of Great Bend was a two-time All-American for the Tigers in wrestling. He was the 1981 National Champion at 158 pounds in his junior year, helping the team to a sixth-place finish as a team at nationals. He finished fourth nationally in 1979 as a true freshman at just 18 years old, helping the team to a seventh-place finish that year. Henning made the All-Freshman Team for all divisions with his performance that year. Henning was the second national champion for FHSU in wrestling, ending an 11-year drought without a national champion. He was also a three-time regional placer and national tournament qualifier. Henning won the Southwest Open Tournament, which hosted several NCAA Division I teams, where he beat a wrestler from Missouri University who beat the Olympic champion Kenny Monday earlier that year. He went on to pin the returning tournament champion in the finals. Henning won the most outstanding wrestler at the Central Missouri Tournament along with awards for most pins in two other tournaments respectively. Unfortunately Henning was unable to complete his senior year due to a knee injury in January of 1982 before the regional tournament, but he finished his career with an impressive record of 82-15-1.
Jim Montgomery - Track and Field (1952-55)
Jim Montgomery, native of Ellsworth was one of the first NAIA individual national champions in FHSU outdoor track and field history and a two-time All-American. He, along with teammate Alan Feist, who is already in the Tiger Sports Hall of Fame, both won individual outdoor national championships in 1953. Montgomery was a national champion in the pole vault with a mark of 13-feet, 3-inches as a sophomore in 1953. He backed that up with another All-American effort in the pole vault in 1954 as a junior, finishing second with a better effort of 13-feet, 6.875-inches. He qualified for the national meet once again in 1955, but was unable to attend.
Vicki Thom Smith - Gymnastics (1981-85)
Vicki Thom Smith, native of Derby was a three-time All-American performer in women’s gymnastics. As a freshman in 1982, she placed second nationally in the floor exercise and uneven bars to earn two All-America honors. She, along with fellow All-American Shae Donham helped the team to a fourth-place finish at nationals in 1985. Smith finished fifth in the floor exercise to earn All-American honors that year. She was also a member of the team that finished fifth at nationals in 1984, placing seventh in the balance beam and eighth in floor exercise.
Ed and Donna Stehno - Contributors
Ed and Donna Stehno of Hays are members of Fort Hays State Athletics’ Difference Makers and in 2013, the couple pledged a $1 million gift to the FHSU Foundation. The bulk of their donation is going to athletic scholarships. They served as national co-chairs of the Cornerstone Campaign, which was the largest capital campaign in the history of the university. The goal of the campaign was to raise $60 million, but when the campaign ended, nearly $69 million had been raised.