This past weekend, we celebrated a virtual Homecoming which included a video induction ceremony of our two newest Stony Brook Hall of Famers. Here is the text from that ceremony from Director of Athletics, Dan Hickey ’04.
Hello everyone and welcome to the 25th induction ceremonies of the Stony Brook School Athletic Hall of Fame.
Normally we would be together in Carson Auditorium, celebrating the accomplishments of our distinguished classmates, but this is just one more thing that COVID-19 has changed for the time being. But if we’re anything at Stony Brook, we are resilient, and we wanted to find a way to honor our worthy recipients despite not being able to gather together.
Today I have the honor of welcoming two new members into an exclusive club that represents the very best student-athletes from the 99-year history of Blue and White Athletics. Our inductees were chosen by a panel of Stony Brook Hall of Famers who voted on a list of 11 nominees, spanning six decades. Juanita Gonzalez and Jin Han Justin Song, both from the Class of 2005, received the highest number of votes.
I was very pleased with both selections because my time at the Brook overlapped with Juanita’s and Justin’s. I graduated just a year ahead of them and had a front row seat to many sensational performances during their time as Bears.
Our first inductee is Juanita Gonzalez, who in her six years with the softball program became Long Island’s undisputed strikeout queen. As a seventh-grader she struck out 34 batters, then nearly tripled that mark with 96 the following spring. As a freshman she blew through the 100-strikeout barrier with 193 and tossed her first of four no-hitters, then struck out 232 batters as a sophomore while notching another no-no. In her junior season, she notched an astonishing 306 strikeouts, including two 20-strikeout performances, out of a possible 21 outs, and a third no-hitter in leading the softball program to its first League Championship. She closed her career in 2005 with 292 more Ks to push her career strikeout total to a Long Island record, 1,153. She still owns school records for strikeouts in a game, a season, and a career. But while Juanita was nothing short of dominant on the diamond, she was far from a one-dimensional athlete.
On the tennis court she was a three-time All-County performer in helping the team to a 2002 League Championship. She was also a valued contributor to the varsity basketball team.
After Stony Brook, she continued her softball career at Division I Fordham University where in her collegiate debut vs. Jacksonville she recorded five shutout innings and allowed just one hit to lead the Rams to victory.
Juanita not only performed at an incredibly high level, but always did so as a true sportswoman and a wonderful representation of a true student-athlete. I remember her with a smile always on her face, joyfully embracing the opportunity to compete. It is my honor to induct Juanita Gonzalez into our Hall of Fame.
Our next inductee is Jin Han Justin Song, who left scorch marks on the Marvin Goldberg Track on a routine basis.
As a junior, Justin was the lead leg for the 4×400 meter relay team that earned Stony Brook’s eighth Penn Relays Championship plaque. Additionally, he won the 100 meter County Championship and earned All-State status at the New York State Championships. As a senior, he won Division Championships in the 100 and 200 meters in 11.2 seconds and 22.99 seconds, respectively, and anchored the 4×100 meter relay team to the Division title. At that year’s New York State Championships, he again earned All-State recognition by finishing 5th in the 100 and 6th in the 200.
After finishing his career as one of the most decorated sprinters in Blue & White history, Justin attended Division I Davidson College where he continued to reach new plateaus of speed. He capped a sensational four-year run with the Wildcats with a place on nearly all of Davidson’s sprinting leaderboards. He still has the two fastest 55 meter times in school history at 7.05 and 7.10 seconds while also owning Davidson’s second-fastest indoor 400, third-fastest outdoor 400, third-fastest indoor 200, and eighth-fastest outdoor 100. He is also a member of the fastest 4×400 relay and second-fastest 4×100 relay in school history. He closed his Wildcat career with a 5th place finish in the Southern Conference Championships in a blazing time of 49.19.
I had the privilege of running track with Justin for several years under the direction of Robin Lingle. My favorite memory of Justin, alongside our Penn Relays victory, was our dual meet against Port Jeff that came down to the final event: the 4×100 meter relay. Both teams were tied, the winner of the relay would take the win. Justin, our anchor, received the baton a few steps behind Port Jeff’s top sprinter, but Justin turned on the afterburners and charged past him on the straightaway to secure the win against our crosstown rivals. Justin was a great teammate, a great competitor, and one of the finest sprinters we’ve had in a long line of talented speedsters. It is my honor to induct my teammate into the Hall of Fame.