Athletic greats celebrated with induction to Gateway Sports Hall of Fame

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Friday, October 11, 2019 | 5:28 PM


Katrina Streiner made her mark in swimming over four years of competition at Gateway.

The 2005 graduate won two WPIAL titles in the 50-yard freestyle, another one in the 100 free and qualified seven times to states in those events.

She also set the school record as a member of the 200 free relay.

Throughout her time as a Gator, Streiner often looked at the record boards and saw the names of Gateway Sports Hall of Famers such as Michelle Chow, Anne Spaeder, Celeste Makiel and Melanie Morgan, who set standards for the swimmers who came after them.

Streiner, who won a conference championship and set eight school records as a collegiate swimmer at Duquesne, was able to take her own place alongside those swimming stars and other Gateway athletic greats as a member of the hall of fame’s Class of 2019 at a banquet ceremony Oct. 5 at Edgewood Country Club in Churchill.

She shared the spotlight with fellow inductees Paul Krusey (Class of 1967, football, basketball, track), Gregg Nemec (Class of 1973, football, wrestling), Crista Coles (Class of 1989, soccer), Matt Houy (Class of 2005, football), Russ Gratton (coach and teacher) and the 1976 WPIAL champion boys track and field team.

“When I was swimming at Gateway, I wasn’t thinking 10 to 15 years down the road,” Streiner said. “I always tried to keep my goals in the present, the next race, the next competition and the next chance to win. But this is such a great honor.”

The Class of 2019 to the Gateway Sports Hall of Fame was the 16th to be enshrined since the inaugural class of 1999 which featured Gator legends Chow, Pete Antimarino, Henry J. Furrie, Richard Adipotti, Cliff Parsons, Mel Nash, Curtis Bray and the 1969 WPIAL championship football team.

Coles, one of 19 females enshrined, helped found the Gateway girls soccer program in 1986, served as team captain for three years, earned all-star honors for her efforts and played in college at Allegheny before plying her talents in a semi-pro league.

The inductees, while reminiscing about their accomplishments at Gateway and beyond, were quick to thank all those who gave guidance and support in their athletic and overall life journeys.

While Russ Gratton didn’t start out as a Gator — he played football and basketball at Allderdice and football at Slippery Rock — he later influenced Gateway students and athletes as a teacher and football coach. He helped guide Gateway football teams to three WPIAL championships (1974, ‘85 and ‘86).

“When preparing for (the induction banquet), all these great memories came flooding back,” Gratton said. “This is such a humbling honor, that’s for sure. There are so many great people who are in that hall of fame.”

The induction banquet served a reunion of sorts for the 1976 boys track and field team as coaches Larry Young and Tom LaBuff shared memories with nearly a dozen team members in attendance.

“I am blessed to have had the opportunity of sharing a small part of my life with them,” Young said in comments contained in the hall-of-fame program. “They certainly have had a positive influence on my life and my coaching career.”

Michael Love is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Michael by email at mlove@tribweb.com or via Twitter .

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