Carol Hammerle, the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay’s first and longest-tenured women’s basketball coach, received a standing ovation during a special recognition ceremony prior to the Phoenix game at the Kress Events Center, Saturday, Jan. 31.
The University surprised Hammele with a tribute, describing her as a visionary leader in girls’ and women’s athletics in the State of Wisconsin. She began her career at UW-Green Bay as a physical education teacher, cheerleading adviser, and coach of field hockey, tennis and basketball. She is best known for building the women’s basketball program from its inception in 1973-74 to national prominence, and being a prominent advocate for women’s and girls athletics throughout the region.
A committee of Hammerle’s friends, colleagues and alumni also surprised her with the announcement of the establishment of the Carol Hammerle Scholarship, which will be awarded annually to a UW-Green Bay female student-athlete. She was also recognized with a new display, which calls attention to her long and successful career. The display will permanently reside in the Kress Events Center’s south entrance.
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Hammerle guided Phoenix teams to the WNIT in 1992, and to the NCAA tournament in 1994 and in 1998. In 25 seasons with the Phoenix, she compiled a 456-226 career record, with twelve 20-win campaigns, 9 conference titles, and 21 consecutive winning seasons. Among her many achievements, she was inducted into the Phoenix Hall of Fame in 2007.
Hammerle, who teaches and lives in Aurora, Ill., was in town for Alumni Day festivities, including a morning alumni game and the annual alumni post-game reception where current players and alumni have the opportunity to connect. This year the alumni were joined by donors to the scholarship fund and their families.