Class of 2008

RON CLASE 1967-1971 (Men’s Tennis: and Basketball)

Ron Clase


Career 110 wins and 2 losses

Ron was ranked # 1 in Indiana: 1967-1971


Little State Champions: 2 years



Co-Defensive player of the year: 1969-70

Defensive player of the year: 1970-71

Lead scorer: 1970-71

Team record of 26-6: 1969-70

12th All-Time scoring with 1,822

Ron and his wife Kathy currently live in Florida.

PAUL HENNING 1975-1979 (Men’s Soccer)




All-State Soccer Team, Indiana Intercollegiate Athletic Association: 1975, 1976

All Conference Soccer Team, Mid-Central Conference: 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978

All District Soccer Team, District III, National Christian College Athletic Association: 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978

All District Soccer Team, District 21, NAIA: 1976, 1977, 1978

All Midwest Soccer Team, NSCAA: 1976

NCCAA All Tournament Soccer Team: 1976

NCCAA All-American Soccer Team: 1976

NAIA All-American Soccer Team: 1976, 1978

MCC Soccer Champions: 1976, 1978


Led team in goals all four seasons

Led team in assists three seasons

1st in career goals scored with 67
1st in career total points with 162
2nd in career assists with 31
3rd in single season assists with 13
3rd in rookie goals scored with 10
7th in rookie assists with 6
10th in single season goals with 20

National Honors:

Company Grade Officer of the Year Headquarters European Communications Division
U.S. Air Force Nominee for Air Force Association H. H. Arnold Award for the most significant contribution by a military member for national defense
As Commander, 81st Communications Squadron, led unit to two Air Force Outstanding Unit Awards
Outstanding Young Men of America

Family: Wife, Mary; Children, David

HEATHER JOHNSON (EVERHART) 1992-1994 (Softball)

Heather Johnson



First Appearance for Grace at NAIA national tournament: 1994

Beat the #1 seed Kennesaw State in opening round of NAIA tournament: 1994

District 21 All-District Team: 1991, 1992, 1993, 1994

NCCAA All-District 1993, 1994

NCCAA District Title winner: 1991,1992,1993,1994

Tryout with Olympic Softball Team: 1994

NAIA Records:

236 Innings Pitched-1994
86 Career Wins-1991-94
724 Career Strikeouts, 1991-94

Family: Husband, Jay; Children, Makayla “Grace”, Lawrence “Taft” and Lawson “Mack”

GLEN “CHET” KAMMERER 1960-1964 (Men’s Basketball)



Coached at Grace College from:1966-1975

Head Coach at Grace for 10 years (1965-1975) with a record of 183-105 (.635)

27 years of coaching college basketball—542-256 overall record

Inducted into the NAIA Hall of Fame: 2000

Coached two years in NBA with the Los Angeles Lakers 1992-94

Coached one year professionally in Germany

Serves as the director of player Personnel for the Miami Heat

1st in career points with2,504
1st in career field goals with 975
1st in field goals attempted with 2,112
5th in career rebounds with 1,070
9th in points in a season with 737

Served as Assistant Basketball Coach for the NBA’s Los Angeles Lakers, Miami Heat

Family: Wife, Sherill (Vincent) 1963 Grace grad; Children, Chad Kammerer, Shanda Stansberry, and Shariss Thurman.

JAMES “JIM” KESSLER 1977-Current (Men’s Basketball)



NAIA Coach of the Year:1992

NAIA Coach of Character: 1995

NCCAA Coach of the Year: 1982, 1992

NCCAA Hall of Fame: 1994

NAIA National Champions: 1992

NABC Guardians of the Game National Award for Service-National Winner: 2006

International Outreach: Bahamas, Puerto Rico, Philippine Islands, Taiwan, Egypt, France, Germany and Kenya


Organized Tournaments:

Habitat for Humanity 1994-1999

Kosciusko County Cancer Care Fund – 2001-current.


Track & Field:

Served as asst. coach on 1977 MCC championship team

Family: Wife, Susanne; Children, Kimberly, Jennifer, Sarah and Janelle.


Dick & Ginny Leaf

Meritorious Service to Grace College Athletics.

The Leafs have been supporting Grace College Athletics for 39 years. Following the men’s basketball program very close during all of those years.

Family: two children: Joy Hauck (50) and Jody Leaf Edwards (46)

Dr. Yvonne F. Messner 1960-1980 (W. Basketball)

Yvonne Messner

First Female Coach in the history of Grace College.


Women’s Basketball: 22 years

Track & Field: 16 years

Volleyball: 8 years

Softball: 8 Years

Tennis: :

Women’s Athletic Director: 22 years.

Head of the physical education department for 10 years.

Asst. professor at Ball State University and then

Associate Professor at Wintrop University from 1987-1996

Associate Professor at Azusa Pacific from 1996-2003.

Family: Husband, Dick; Children, Michael Richard Messner, Merilyn Messner Stule, and Marlene Messner Shickley

RICHARD “DICK” MESSNER 1955-1975 (AD/Basketball & Baseball)





Director of Athletics

Graduate of Wheaton College: 1951 was inducted into the
Wheaton College Crusader Hall of Honor in 1980.
Inducted into the Ashland (OH) Country Sports Hall of Fame in 1988.

Dick passed away on July 9, 1991 from Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma cancer.

DOUG NOLL 1975-1978 (Men’s Basketball)



NAIA All-American: 1978

NCCAA All-American: 1975-1978

Grace MVP: 1976-77, 1977-78

All-Conference: 1976,1977, 1978

Invited to NBA New Orleans Jazz summer free agent camp: 1978

Coached on NAIA National Championship team: 1992

1st in points in a season with 950
1st in career free throw percentage at 87.1%
1st in career scoring averaging with 27.7 ppg.
1st and 2nd in single season free throw percentage at 89.5% (77-78) and 89.1% (76-77)
5th in career scoring with 2,245 points (only 2 ½ seasons)


Coach of the Year in MCC Grace Golf Team: 1990, 1991

NCAA Division I Coach at IPFW

Created Doug Noll Worldwide Basketball Clinics in 1991

Conducted clinics in U.S. and 10 different countries

Director of the Doug Noll Basketball Academy 2006-present

He currently serves as the Asst. basketball coach for the NBA’s Developmental League Fort Wayne Mad Ants.

Family: Wife; Carla, Children; Brad, and Abby Grubbs, Grandchild; Breana Grace Noll.

MELISSA SIMFUKWE (RANTS) 1994-1998 (Volleyball)



NCCAA All-American

NAIA All-American Honorable Mention

Career Record at Grace 162-37 (35 game winning streak in 1994)

NCCAA District Champs: 94-97

NAIA Great Lakes All-Region Team: 95-96

Made 14 All-Tourney teams during her career

1st in career digs with 2,210
1st in career assists with 7,324
2nd in single season aces with 99: 1995
2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th in single season assists with 1,927—1,924—1,924—1,549
3rd in career aces with 249
4th in single season serving percentage at 96.5%: 1995
5th in career solo blocks with 710
7th in single season solo blocks with 95: 1996
8th and 9th in single season digs with 601 and 562:1994 and 1996
9th in single season total blocks with 238: 1996

Family: Husband; Kondo, Children; Judah and Jael