SPOKANE, Wash. – The Whitworth Heritage Gallery Hall of Fame has had many illustrious classes in its 30 years. Few match the accomplishments of the class of 2019. The winningest soccer coach in school history, two NCAA Division III individual champions and the best women's soccer player of her generation comprise the 30th Whitworth Heritage Gallery class.
Sean Bushéy (soccer coach), Rory Buck (men's swimming), Carter Comito (men's track & field) and Jael Hagerott (women's soccer) will be inducted into the Heritage Gallery on Saturday October 5th in the Hixon Union Building at 9:00 am. The ceremony includes a breakfast and reservations can be made by calling 509-777-3224. The cost is $15 per person.
Sean Bushéy coached the men's soccer team for 17 seasons (1996 – 2013) and the women's team for 12 (1997-2008). The Pirate men won eight NWC titles, including seven over his final nine years. The 2005 men's team reached the NCAA Division III national semifinals and the 2009 team went to the national quarterfinals. Whitworth had a 9-6-2 record in the NCAA Division III tournament under Bushéy and his men's coaching record with the Pirates was 209-86-35 (.656). He was selected by his peers as the NWC Coach of the Year five times. Bushey coached the Whitworth women to a record of 123-90-16 (.572), 80-30-7 over his final six seasons. He led the Pirate women to their first and only NCAA Division III tournament appearance in 2007. Bushéy also coached the Whitworth men's tennis team from 1997 through 1999.
Rory Buck was the NCAA Division III Men's Swimmer of the Year during his junior season in 2011 when he broke the Division III records in the 100-yard and 200-yard breaststrokes. He went on to defend both national titles in 2012. In addition to his four NCAA Division III titles and six All-America finishes, Buck won six Northwest Conference individual events and his NWC records in both breaststroke races still stand. Also an outstanding student, Buck was a second team Academic All-American as a junior in 2011 and a first team Academic All-America as a senior. Buck represented South Africa at the 2011 World University games in China and, following graduation in 2012, Buck finished third at the South African national championships, missing a spot in the Olympics by one place.
Carter Comito was a state-level wrestler in high school, who also participated in track and field in the spring. However, when he came to Whitworth and focused on the discus, he became one of the best there ever was at the NCAA Division III level. Comito earned NCAA Division III championships in the discus as a sophomore (2011), junior (2012) and a senior (2013). His school-record discus toss of 203'-5" is the second-longest in Division III history and was the 15th-best throw in the world in the spring of 2013. In addition to his three individual national titles in the discus, Comito developed into a national-level shot putter who earned All-America honors in 2012 (indoor and outdoor) and 2013 (indoor). He continues to hold school records in both the indoor (59'-3.5") and outdoor (59'-2") shot put. Carter was a five-time Northwest Conference individual champion and was the NWC men's Field Athlete of the Year in 2012 and 2013.
Jael Hagerott established the women's soccer career record for assists (30) during her run as a Pirate from 2003 through 2007. She also finished with 30 career goals and ended up third all-time in scoring at Whitworth. Hagerott is a primary reason the Pirates went 57-18-4 over her four seasons, as she started 77 of those 79 contests. Jael was the NWC Offensive Player of the Year in 2003 when she scored 12 goals and had 10 assists as a forward. She followed that with eight goals and nine assists as a sophomore, but suffered a season-ending knee injury 17 minutes into her junior season in 2005. She returned as a midfielder in 2006 and 2007, becoming the only four-time first team All-NWC honoree in school history. She led Whitworth to its first NCAA Division III Tournament appearance in 2007 and the first tournament victory in school history – 2-1 over UC Santa Cruz. Jael was a two-time Academic All-America (third team) in 2006 and 2007. In 2011 Hagerott succeeded her father Damon as Whitworth's women's soccer coach and led the Bucs for five seasons, compiling a 39-43-16 record, including a 33-32-15 mark in the NWC.
The class of 2019 will join a group of 99 individuals and eight teams already enshrined in the Heritage Gallery. The current class, along with all previously-inducted Heritage Gallery members attending the event, will be recognized at halftime of the Whitworth – Willamette football game that afternoon.
The Whitworth Heritage Gallery Hall of Fame created in 1989 by the (then-named) Whitworth Crimson Club and inducted its first class in the fall of 1990.