Athletics Hall of Fame

Athletics Hall of Fame adds two alumni, former SID

Two alumni and a former sports information director (SID) comprise the Bluffton University Athletics Hall of Fame class of 2013-14.

Becky (Reineke ’98) Boblitt has been selected for her achievements in basketball and soccer, while Bill Lape, a 1962 graduate, is being honored for his Bluffton football career. They will be inducted alongside Ron Geiser, who performed SID duties during parts of four decades, on Jan. 25 in Marbeck Center.

The induction banquet, beginning with a reception at 6 p.m. and dinner at 6:30 p.m., is open to the public. Cost is $20; tickets may be reserved at http://tickets.bluffton.edu through Jan. 15.

Boblitt ranks 10th in Bluffton women’s basketball career scoring, with 931 points from 1994-98. As a sophomore in 1995-96, she averaged a team-leading 13.8 points per game as Bluffton won 16 games—still a single-season school record—and the Association of Mideast Colleges (AMC) title. She was named first-team all-AMC and to its all-tournament team that season.

The Bluffton native also led the 1996-97 team in scoring, with a 13-point average, and as a senior the following year, the three-year letter winner earned all-Great Lakes Region honorable mention. Her 63 three-point field goals as a junior and 62 as a senior are second and third only to her 69 as a sophomore on Bluffton’s list of most three-pointers in a season. Her 194 career three-pointers represent a school record as well, and she is tied for the single-game record, twice sinking six treys in a game.

In soccer, Boblitt is Bluffton’s career scoring leader, with 40 goals in three years, and co-holder of the mark for goals in a game, with five. She ranks second for goals in a season, with 14 both in 1995 and 1996. She was first-team all-AMC in 1995 and a second-team selection in 1994.

Since earning her bachelor’s degree in elementary education in 1998, Boblitt has taught middle school and elementary art in McComb (Ohio) Local Schools. From 1999-2004, she was the girls’ varsity basketball coach at McComb, leading the Panthers to Blanchard Valley Conference co-championships and district titles in both 2001 and 2003. In 2003, she was named coach of the year in the conference, District 8, Northwest Ohio and Ohio Division IV.

Boblitt holds a master’s degree in education from Marygrove College and is active at First United Methodist Church in Bluffton, where she lives with her husband, Todd, and their three children.

Lape was a first-team, all-Mid-Ohio League (MOL) halfback in 1960 and 1961, and remains in the top 10 in several Bluffton statistical categories for a game, a season and a career. A four-year starter and letter winner, from 1958-61, he played on three league-champion teams and was co-captain of the 1961 team. In 1962, he was the first recipient of the A.C. Burcky Award, presented annually to Bluffton’s top senior male athlete.

The West Chester, Ohio, resident led the MOL in scoring as a sophomore—when he received all-league honorable mention—a junior and a senior. He is tied for second on Bluffton’s single-game scoring list, with 24 points on four touchdowns against Defiance in 1961, and stands fifth on the career scoring list (236 points); sixth in career touchdowns (37); and 10th in single-season scoring (82 points in 1960). His rankings on career rushing lists include fourth in yards per carry, with a six-yard average, and ninth in career yardage, with 2,654 yards.

Also a four-year letterman in track and president of Varsity B as a senior, Lape earned a bachelor’s degree in biology. He then played two years for the Cleveland Bulldogs of the former United Football League and taught middle school science for 11 years in Parma Heights, Ohio, and Cincinnati. In addition, he was head football and assistant basketball coach at Greenbriar Middle School in Parma Heights, and an assistant varsity football coach at his alma mater, Greenhills (now Winton Woods) High School, Cincinnati.

The father of two later worked for five years at Pat Matson’s Nautilus Fitness Centers in Cincinnati, and retired in 2006 after 26 years in sales manager and general manager positions in the automobile business. Also in Cincinnati, he has been involved with the Cincinnati Gospel Mission, Neediest Kids of All and Matthew 25 Ministries.

Geiser, a Bluffton native and a 1961 Bowling Green State University graduate, is only the second non-athlete or coach to enter the hall of fame, joining Dr. F.D. Rodabaugh.

Geiser was assistant SID or SID at four universities before coming to campus in 1968 as public information director. Over the next five years, he began compiling Bluffton men’s athletics records, wrote weekly news releases and distributed updated statistics sheets for most sports. He was also publicity director for the Mid-Ohio Conference for two years and, during its first two years, for the Hoosier-Buckeye Collegiate Conference. In 1971 and 1972, he was honored by the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics for outstanding printed programs for football.

While editor of the Bluffton News from 1974-78, Geiser assisted Bluffton’s athletics department in various ways, such as updating most men’s records. In 1978, he was named the first recipient of the Larry W. Jones Memorial Award for contributions to Bluffton athletics by a non-athlete.

He served as public information director/SID in 1984-85 and, during the 1985-90 football seasons, wrote news releases and provided a weekly stat sheet for the public information office. He covered football games for the Bluffton News and the Lima News; updated historical materials; and represented Bluffton as SID at its 1987 playoff game. He also assumed responsibility for men’s basketball statistics and updated men’s basketball records, among other related activities during that time. 

Geiser was Bluffton’s director of information services and/or SID throughout the ‘90s. During that decade, he began updating statistics and historical records for all Bluffton men’s and women’s sports, and was publicity director for the Association of Mideast Colleges during its existence.

Geiser has also worked at the Bluffton Chapel of Chiles-Laman Funeral Homes and has been active in Bluffton’s First Mennonite Church. He and his wife, the late Arlene (Balmer) Geiser, have three children.

-B-