Annual Hall of Fame Induction Banquet to take place October 11
The annual Rockford High School Athletic Hall of Fame Induction Banquet will take place on Wednesday, October 11 at Boulder Creek Golf Course. Please contact Rockford High School Athletic Office (4100 Kroes Road) for more information on the annual banquet.
Prior to the homecoming football contest with East Kentwood on October 13, inductees will be introduced to the homecoming crowd at approximately 6:40 p.m..
This year’s inductees are:
Katie Clarin – Before graduating from Rockford High School in 2002, as the Ted Carlson Award winner and the OK Red Athlete of the Year, Katie excelled in two sports. She was a two-year starter in girls basketball, was the team captain and Most Valuable Player in 2001. She was also an All-Conference Honorable Mention performer.
In girl’s water polo, she won four varsity letters and her career was filled with All Conference, All Region, All State (first team 2001-02) and All American (4th team – 2001, 2nd team – 2002). She was the team M.V.P. in 2001 and 2002. She continued her water polo success at M.S.U. from 2003-06. She was All Big Ten four years as well as four years on the All National First Team. Katie was the M.V.P. of the All National Tournament in 2006. She scored the winning goal with 9 seconds left in the game to beat Florida 5-4 for the championship.
Presently, Katie is teaching 7th-8th grade math at North Rockford Middle School. She has continued to share her athletic knowledge. She coached middle school volleyball (2011-2016) and was the men’s water polo assistant coach (2006-2008).
This coming year will be her eleventh as a middle school swim coach. She has also been the head Women’s Water Polo coach since 2014, after serving as an assistant from 2008-13. In 2016 her team was state runner up, and she was the Women’s Water Polo Coach of the Year.
Wes Cummings – In high school Wes played basketball for three seasons and wrestled as a junior. Baseball was where he excelled, playing shortstop for the Rams. After one year on the J.V. squad, he became a three-year
He was All-Conference Honorable Mention as a sophomore and First Team All-Conference his junior and senior years. He was the team M.V.P. his senior year in 1970 when the team went 24-2 for the season and won the Tri-River Championship. He joined a summer team after graduation that made it to the final game of the Connie Mack World Series in New Mexico before losing in extra innings to a team from Dallas.
Wes played collegiately at C.M.U. and graduated Cum Laude with a 3.87 G.P.A. He continued to play baseball after college spending 20 years competing in the Grand Rapids/Wyoming Super League.
He spent 32 years in education as a teacher, coach (24 seasons as a high school baseball coach), assistant principal and athletic director. Wes started the baseball program at Davenport University where during his three years his teams had a record of 81-69, including the first eleven wins in program history.
Mike Emery – After two seasons at the middle school level and one year in charge of the J.V. program, Coach Emery became the head coach of Rockford’s girl’s lacrosse program in 2008. Since that time, the girls have won six state championships while compiling an overall record of 181-41-6. The girls have won the last five state titles and are the winningest program in the state since the sport was sanctioned by the MHSAA. The program has produced numerous All State Players and nine All Americans and has seen over 40 players continue to perform at N.C.A.A. and N.A.I.A. levels.
Mike credits his former assistant coach Jeff Neerken (2008-11) and his present coaches Brent Deuel (defensive co-ordinator) and Mark Neumen (J.V. coach) for their dedication while also thanking many former players for coming back to help the team prepare. “Our objective each year is to build lifetime relationships and memories for the kids while teaching lessons that cannot be learned in the classroom.”
Coach Emery has coached his daughters Megan and Zina as the sport has been a family affair. Megan still works with the team on strength and conditioning.
Mike considers his election to the hall of fame an opportunity to represent the program and all who have been a part of its history.
Kyle Fujimoto – A 2001 Rockford High School graduate, Kyle posted a 4.2 G.P.A. while participating in three sports. He was an All-State cross country performer on a team that won the state championship in 1999. In track he was the individual two-mile indoor champion and ran a leg of the 4X1600 relay which was second in the national tournament. He also was on the boys’ soccer team which had him participating in two sports at the same time for two years in a row. In all, he won nine varsity letters and was All Conference and All Region several times.
Kyle attended Hillsdale College on a full scholarship and was a three-time conference champion while participating in track and cross country. He was also All Conference in both sports. He finished 13th in the N.C.A.A. Division 2 10,000 meters and was on a team that placed 8th in the tournament. This was the best Hillsdale had ever done.
In college Kyle double majored in economics and mathematics and carried a 3.52 G.P.A. He went on to get a master’s degree in economics.
Dr. Michael Shibler – Mike Shibler has been the superintendent of Rockford Public Schools since July of 1989. As part of his leadership role, he has been involved with the growth and success of many areas including athletics.
For several years he was a member of the M.H.S.A.A representative council, a group that makes many important decisions involving the sports sanctioned by the state of Michigan. He understands the hard work and dedication put forth by Rockford principals, athletic directors, coaches and athletes and has watched with pride the accomplishments of the athletic program.
Rockford has won 56 state championships during his reign as superintendent. Dr. Shibler has been a spectator at many Rockford athletic events and spoken at several team banquets.
Over the years he has attended and supported many of the Rockford High School Athletic Hall of Fame dinners and congratulated the inductees. His many other accomplishments, not including those associated with running the school system, range from being active as a board member in the Rockford Area Chamber of Commerce, being a founding member of the Wolverine World Wide Family Y.M.C.A. and helping establish an education foundation. He often is a spokesperson explaining bond, millage and other issues so that the public is informed.
Jeff Shutich – Joining his brothers Craig and Jimmy, Jeff is the third wrestler from the Shutich family to be honored as a Rockford High School Athletic Hall of Fame member.
He graduated from R.H.S. in 2007 with a career record 195-4 including an undefeated senior year where he won the 130 pound M.H.S.A.A. state championship. He was ranked 26th in the nation that season.
During his wrestling career he was a four-time conference and district champion, a three-time regional champion (injured one year), a four time First Team All-Conference performer and a member of the All Area Dream Team four times. Besides winning his weight class in 2007 and helping the Rams win the team title that year, he also had two third place finishes at the state level. Jeff wrestled two seasons at C.M.U. and was a 2009 University Nationals All American before graduating with a degree in economics.
Currently, he and his wife Krysten reside in Chicago, Illinois where he works as a sales representative for C.H. Robinson Worldwide.