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Five to be inducted to Huntington Hall of Fame

by Eric Andrews - eandrews@h-ponline.com

Huntington North and its athletic department will induct five individuals into the Huntington North Athletics Hall of Fame tonight during halftime of the boys basketball game against Columbia City.

The new inductees are multisport athlete Tammy (Newsom) Blomeke, former athletic director, football and track coach Chuck Chambers, longtime athletic trainer and assistant athletic director Dan Hildebrand, athlete and coach Dave Kaylor and girls basketball player Diane (Poulson) Miller.

A committee consisting of current members of the Huntington North Athletics Hall of Fame select the new inductees each year. Each year’s inductees are chosen from a list of nominees coming from a trio of categories consisting of athletes, coaches and contributors.

“We think this is a tremendous class,” said the selection committee in a press release. “Dave Kaylor and Dan Hildebrand have given lifetimes of service to athletics, first as students and later in multiple roles at Huntington North. Clark Chambers also wore many hats during his tenure, with many successful coaching seasons while also leading the athletic department. Tammy Newsome was one of the school’s first female standout athletes and Diane Poulson was a key member of that first girls’ state championship team in 1990.”

Blomeke, a 1978 graduate of Huntington North, earned varsity letters in basketball and volleyball and also competed in track and field, becoming one of the school’s first standout female multisport athletes. While at Huntington North, Blomeke was also a part of the National Honor Society. Blomeke went on to attend then-Huntington College on an athletic scholarship, where she starred for the Foresters in basketball, softball, track and volleyball. Blomeke graduated from Huntington in 1982 with Magna Cum Laude honors. Upon graduating, Blomeke joined the women’s basketball coaching staff. While on the staff, the Foresters won the 1984 National Christian College Athletic Association tournament. Blomeke has since continued her coaching career in Huntington, serving as an assistant coach for the Huntington North volleyball team and coaching volleyball and basketball at Crestview Middle School.

Chambers spent 27 years as a head coach within the Huntington North athletic department. Most notably, Chambers served as the football team’s head coach for 16 years from 1985 to 2001. During Chambers’s tenure running the Vikings’ sideline, Huntington North recorded 10 winning seasons, including Olympic Athletic Conference championships in 1988 and 2001 and a 1993 sectional championship, the lone sectional championship in program history. Chambers also coached the boys track and field team from 1996 to 2012. In those 16 years, the Vikings won four Olympic Athletic Conference championships and two North Central Conference crowns. Chambers also led the Vikings to sectional championships in 1999 and 2010, with the 1999 team going on to also win a regional title. His efforts led to nominations for the Indiana state track coach of the year in 1999 and 2010. Chambers rounded out his coaching résumé by coaching the boys golf team for one season. Chambers also served as Huntington North’s athletic director for five of his years with the Vikings.

Hildebrand is a lifelong Viking, having graduated from Huntington North in 1971 before spending nearly 40 years serving in various roles at the school. After attending and graduating from Purdue University, Hildebrand returned to Huntington in 1980 as an elementary physical education teacher. In 1982, Hildebrand moved his teaching career to Huntington North, serving as both a physical education and health education teacher. Hildebrand continued his teaching career at Huntington North until retiring from teaching in 2015. Hildebrand also spent the final 24 years of his teaching career as the chair of the physical education and health department. In addition to teaching at Huntington North, from 1980 to 2001, Hildebrand also served as an assistant athletic trainer and as the head athletic trainer. Hildebrand wrapped up his Huntington North career with a pair of tenures as the assistant athletic director, with the first from 1996 to 2013 and the second from 2015 to 2018.

Kaylor was one of the first top multisport athletes in Huntington North history, earning two varsity letters in both baseball and football. Kaylor was an all-conference football player as a senior. However, Kaylor particularly stood out on the basketball court, earning three varsity letters and receiving first-team all-conference recognition in his senior season. Kaylor led Huntington North to its first-ever regional championship. Kaylor returned to Huntington North later in his career as a coach and teacher, coaching the freshman football team and serving as an assistant coach for the varsity football team for nine years. Kaylor also spent eight years as a coach with the freshman, junior varsity and varsity basketball teams.

Miller, a 1991 Huntington North graduate, played an integral role in the Vikings’ 1990 girls basketball state championship team, scoring 16 points in the championship game. Miller earned four varsity letters with the Vikings’ girls basketball team, helping Huntington North claim four sectional titles, three regional championships and two semi-state appearances. Miller earned the team’s most valuable player award in her senior season and represented Huntington North in the 1991 East-West All Star Game. Miller attended St. Joseph’s College, where the team won two conference titles and one regional championship, as well as reaching the National Collegiate Athletics Association Division II Elite Eight in 1992. After graduating from St. Joseph’s, Miller returned to Huntington North to coach in the girls basketball program for six years. Miller was named to the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame Silver Anniversary Team in 2016 and has served at the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame as an associate director since 2016 and a member of their committee since 2017.

A reception will be held for the inductees and their families from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. prior to the boys basketball varsity game on the west end of North Arena’s upper deck. Huntington North encourages fans and the community alike to meet the inductees during the reception time.

To commemorate their induction, each inductee will have a plaque in their honor added to the inductee display on the wall of North Arena’s entrance.