Bill Nugent '78
Bill Nugent ’78 was a four-year wrestler and football player for Marist. During the 1976 football season, Bill and the Spartans were Emerald League Champions. As a wrestler, Nugent was named The Register-Guard PrepWrestler of the Year his junior year. Bill wrestled all four years in high school. He was undefeated and State Champion during his senior year, 1978 High School Greco Roman National Champion and placed 2nd in the 1978 National Freestyle Champion.
During the spring of his freshman and sophomore year, Bill participated in track and tennis, respectively. He was also an active member of the Key Club and Band. Bill attended the University of Oregon from 1978-1983, where he participated in Wrestling. He was a four-time NCAA qualifier between 1979-1982. Bill received the PAC 12 title in 1981 & 1982 and was named Outstanding Wrestler of the 1982 Championships. During his senior year, he placed 4th at the NCAA tournament. In 1983 and 1984, he was the National Open Freestyle Wrestling Champion and Olympic Freestyle Wrestling Team Alternate.
Bill graduated with a Degree in Advanced Mathematics in Education in 1986. After college, Bill coached and taught mathematics at several universities and high schools. After 30 years, Bill retired in 2019 from Oregon City High School.
Larry Nugent '74
Larry Nugent ’74 was a part of Marist’s first football state championship in 1973 and was inducted into the 2019 inaugural Athletic Hall of Fame with his 35 teammates. Larry was a four-year wrestler and football player at Marist and was first-team All-State in football. Larry had two individual wrestling state championships in 1973 and 1974, placed 6th in a National High School Freestyle Tournament in 1974 and his four-year high school record was 68-8-6. Larry graduated from Southern Oregon University with both his undergraduate and Masters of Education.
Larry recently retired from Midland University in Fremont, Nebraska, as the head men’s wrestling coach. Prior to that, he coached wrestling at Bethany College in Kansas, Brigham Young University in Utah and Pacific University in Oregon. In addition to his coaching career, Larry has also been a producer and broadcaster for USA Sports Productions and a Director of Development for USA Wrestling. He plans to serve as a local wrestling official now that he is retired.
Casey (Evans) Carlson '00
Casey (Evans) Carlson ’00 left an indelible mark on Marist athletics. A two-sport athlete, Casey earned awards in both basketball and volleyball in all four years of her time as a Spartan. Casey and her basketball teammates won two state championships during her Marist career — one her freshman year in 1997 and one her junior year in 1999. A favorite cheer from the student section in 1997 was “She’s a freshman” — referring to Casey. She was a Sky-Em Second Team All-League selection in 1999 and was an Honorable Mention All-League selection her senior year.
While talented on the basketball court, Casey’s impact on the Marist volleyball program is even more impressive. Her four-year varsity volleyball career at Marist garnered the majority of her awards and honors. She was named Most Inspirational by her teammates her freshman year, laying the groundwork for her leadership on the team. She was a team co-captain for the next three years and helped lead her team of smart, talented and dedicated young women in back-to-back state championships in 1998 and 1999. In volleyball Casey was a Sky-Em First Team All-League selection her sophomore, junior and senior years and the Sky-Em Player of the Year as a sophomore and senior. She was a Second Team All-State selection her junior year and a First Team All-State selection her senior year along with being chosen as the 3A State Player of the Year her senior year. She was also selected to the 1998 and the 1999 3A All-Tournament Teams in her junior and senior seasons.
At the finale of her senior year, Casey earned some more very prestigious awards. She was chosen as The Register-Guard 2000 Prep Athlete of the Year and at her graduation she was honored with Marist’s Gloria Schreiber Award for distinction in women’s athletics.
The 1996 Girls Basketball
The 1995-96 girls basketball team, led by coach Terry Lande, made history in 1996 as Marist’s first girls basketball team to win a state championship after 18 straight trips to the 3A state playoffs*, three second place finishes in 1978, 1981 and 1987 and multiple third place trophies. The ’96 team, with a senior class of six and a final record of 22-3, beat their league rivals, the Junction City Tigers 48-29, to win the OSAA 3A State Championships at the Salem Armory in Salem, Oregon. Kristina Anderson was named to the All-Tournament First Team and Kristen Moore was named to the Second Team All-Tournament Team.
*The Spartans made the 3A state tournament every year between 1978 and 2006 — that’s 29 straight years! In 2007, Marist was moved to the 4A in a state-wide reclassification of the OSAA member schools ending the 3A streak
The 1997-2003 Girls Basketball Teams: 100 Wins Sky-Em League
One hundred wins, 43 athletes, seven seasons, seven assistant coaches, two state championships and one head coach. For seven seasons after clenching their first program state championship trophy in 1996, the Marist’s girls basketball team remained at the top of the Sky-Em League without a single league loss from 1997-2003. Coach Terry Lande and his talented staff led their teams to 100 straight Sky-Em wins, a trip to the state playoffs each year and two more OSAA 3A State Championship trophies, one second place state finish, three third places and one fourth place finish. For many of the contests in these years, the Marist gym was standing-room only for spectators who came to watch these talented and gritty teams of young women play. These teams were a part of a 29-year streak of 3A state appearances for the Spartans — a feat unmatched by any other women’s basketball program in Oregon at any classification. The streak only ended when OSAA did a state-wide reclassification of all member schools. Jamie (Coldren) Ayres ’99 said her favorite memory from her time playing for the Spartans was “the camaraderie, competitiveness and the willingness to work together to achieve one goal.”
Bernie Conklin '69 ✝
Bernie Conklin ’69 was a part of Marist’s first graduating class. He played football, basketball, baseball and participated in track and field for both St. Francis and Marist. Bernie was also a member of the Pep Club and the Letterman’s Club. He received the Blue and Gold Award for distinguished alumni in June of 2000. Conklin’s love for Marist continued even after graduation. His wife Sandy remembers going on many Friday night dates to Marist football games. In the late 70s and early 80s, Bernie, along with several other alumni formed the “Baristy Boys” -- a social group that would play basketball every Thursday night at Marist while their children ran around them and a dedicated group of volunteers who ran the chains for the Spartan football games for years. Bernie was also a Marist parent and grandparent and proudly supported his girls through the Parent Club when they became active members of the Marist community. Bernie passed away in 2016 but his spirit remains at Marist where a scholarship has been endowed in his memory.
Dr. Thomas Kerns ✝
Dr. Thomas Kerns was the first team physician for St. Francis High School football team in 1950 and continued with the Marist High School football teams until 1985. Dr. Kerns was born in Scottsbluff, Nebraska, on Dec. 13, 1919. His father, mother and two brothers had all died by the time he was 17. Supported by a large extended family, he attended boarding school and earned his medical degree from Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska. Upon his arrival in Eugene, Dr. Kerns began his self-education about alcoholism, the treatment of which was not offered in medical schools at the time. In 1973, he helped found Eugene's Serenity Lane Alcohol and Drug Treatment Services which since its inception has treated more than 40,000 people. In 1987 he became the first certified addictionologist in the state. In December 2004, the Governor's Council on Alcohol and Drug Abuse Programs recognized Dr. Kerns for his lifetime work with the Thomas R. Dargan Award. In 1952 he became a charter member of Catholic Charities of Lane County, now known as Catholic Community Services of Lane County. With the help of his wife "Tops," Dr. Kerns co-founded the Eugene Montessori School with Don and Helen Walsh in 1964, the second school of its kind in the state. Along with St. Francis and Marist, where all eight of his kids attended, Dr. Kerns was active in the larger church community as well. He was a fourth-degree Knight of Columbus and was a founding member of the Oregon Catholic Physicians Guild.