Congratulations to our 2009
Hall of Fame Inductees!
Thank you for your hard work and dedication to your sports.
We appreciate the opportunity to honor the legacy you have left for the East Noble Community.
Chris Keil (1986-1990)
There are not many athletes that can accomplish what our next inductee did, but when they do, they are special in many ways. Chris Keil accomplished the incredible feat of being a varsity letter winner all 12 seasons as an East Noble athlete between 1986 and 1990. He participated in football, basketball, and golf but could have picked any sport and been successful. Many of Chris’ coaches have remembered as the most well rounded athlete ever to come out of East Noble.
As an East Noble football safety and 2 year starter at quarterback # 14 was named 1st team All-conference two times and 1st Team All-state as a senior. To date Chris remains tied for second place in career interceptions and is ranked 5th as All-Time Passer.
Each winter season, Chris hung up his cleats and took to the basketball court where he remains to date the season career 3 point leader with 51%. He is 2nd all time in assists, 2nd in 3 pointers in a game, and 4th all time in points. He was named 1st team All-conference as a sophomore, junior, and senior, and was Area Prep of the Year as a junior. He was part of Sectional championship teams his sophomore and senior years. An opposing coach said “EN wins close ballgames because….Keil knows exactly what to do when game is on the line. (He is a) premier player.”
Chris was 1st team All-conference in golf 3 times. His team advanced to the State golf finals in 1989 and he was a regional finalist in 1990.
After leaving East Noble, Chris played basketball for Tri-State. He graduated with a degree in Business management in 1995. He now is the golf professional and part owner at Heron Creek Golf Course in LaGrange, IN. He resides in LaGrange with his wife Monica and their three children.
Quoting his high school basketball coach (Marty Johnson) “I could describe Chris Keil in the classroom and the basketball court the same way. You just could not beat him; his competitive drive was second to none. Pick a sport, pick a class, he was going to be the best at it.”
The most memorable sports moments for Chris were winning sectional and regional titles as a team. He says, “I had the benefit of great coaches-Marty Johnson, Mike Pasquali, Bob Wiant, and Mark Cockroft who brought out the best in us as players and as people and great teammates who all had the same goals to work hard, win and have fun doing it.”
FRED INNINGER (1966 – 2000)
With a career that began in 1966 a true East Noble legend warms our heart and brings a smile to our face because he never knows a stranger. After graduating from Manchester College, Fred began teaching math and PE at Avilla and then moved on to teach math at ENHS. After 8 years Fred became a guidance counselor where he remained for 24 years and earned two Master’s degrees before moving on to be a Coordinator at the Four County Cooperative where he remains today.
Fred Inniger has coached 9 different sports while at East Noble from the middle school level to high school spanning a career of 34 years. As our varsity coach in baseball, softball, boys and girls basketball, Fred captured Sectional titles in all four sports. No other coach in East Noble’s history can lay claim to that distinction. Fred’s teams earned a total of 557 wins during that time.
In baseball he is credited with 7 Sectional titles, 5 Conference titles and one Regional championship and he guided his team to the 1976 basketball Sectional championship. In softball, he brought home 4 Sectional titles and 1 NHC title. His girls basketball team won sectional championship in his final year as a varsity head coach. Fred has done it all including driving the team bus.
Fred was named News-Sun Coach of the Year 9 times and was District Coach of the Year five times in four different varsity sports. In 1982 Fred was an assistant coach for the Indiana High School Baseball All-Star Team.
When Fred wasn’t wearing his coaching shoes, he has been behind the microphone broadcasting football since 1969 and basketball since 1977 doing both play-by-play and color. The “radio voice of the Knights” has kept broadcasting even as radio stations changed and he had to secure sponsorships to keep the games on the air. In 2000-2001 he was the IBCA District II Virgil Sweet Service Award winner, an award given by the Indiana High School Basketball Association for his long number of years of broadcasting high school basketball games.
Fred is not a stranger to the Hall of Fame world. In fact he was inducted into the Indiana High School Softball Assn. Hall of Fame in 1995 and was inducted into the Indiana Sportswriters & Sportscasters Assn. Hall of Fame in 2007. In 2008 he received the District 2 Service Award from the Indiana Interscholastic Athletic Administration Association.
Fred has been active in the State Coaches Associations for baseball, softball, and basketball and was instrumental in helping to start the girls softball All-Star game. He is also very active in many community activities.
Comments from Rich Anderson about Fred most aptly describe our Hall of Fame inductee. “He has always been positive and encouraging to his players and students regardless of their performance or success level and he always had the philosophy that “the cup is always half full, not half empty.”
Jaymee Wappes (1992 – 1996)
Walking the halls of East Noble from 1992 to 1996 was a young lady who wore #22 on the basketball court. As an EN point guard, the impressive records of Jaymee Wappes still stand. She remains East Noble’s girls basketball career scoring leader with 1,243 points. She holds the EN Basketball record of 45 points in one game and eight 3-point baskets in a game which stands in both the girls and boys basketball. She holds game and season records for assists, steals, free throws and field goals. Jaymee scored the most 3 point field goals (51) in a season and the most in a career as a Knight with 119. In her career, Jaymee had an astounding 268 assists with 106 of them occurring in a single season. As her most memorable personal moment, receiving a “Good luck” call before breaking the all time scoring record previously held by Susie Thrapp stands out.
Her senior year she averaged over 20 points, 5 assists, and 4 steals per game. This led the way for her selection as girls basketball Prep of the Year, 1st team All-conference, 1st team Ft Wayne Area, 1st team All-state and a finalist for Ft. Wayne Area Prep of the Year. She also was 1st team All-district. Jaymee’s coach Fred Inniger said “Jaymee can do it all: score, pass, handle the ball, and be a team leader. She has no weakness and that is why she is going to play at the Division One level next year. Jaymee is not only a great basket ball player, but is also a great person.”
In all, Jaymee was a four time All-conference and All-area player, named All-state and received MVP accolades during her East Noble Basketball career. Jaymee was a Hoosier State Games Champ, a State AAU Champion and was on the 1994 Australian International Tour. In 1996 she played for the North team of the Reebok North/South Indiana All Star Classic. Jaymee was recognized as one of the top 40 seniors in 1996.
Jaymee played volleyball all 4 years at EN as a setter. She was named All-conference her senior year and was awarded the Kiwanis Athletic Mental Attitude Award.
Beyond EN’s basketball court, Jaymee flourished as a volunteer at the Y and high school basketball camps and coached middle school girls basketball at the school and the Y always helping a new generation of Knights learn a sport she loved. She also refereed youth basketball and always presented herself as a positive role model for young girls.
After her career at East Noble, Jaymee was awarded a Division 1 scholarship to Bowling Green University where she went on to set records as a point guard for the Falcons while earning a degree in Health & Physical Education. By her senior year Jamie was ranked 24th in the nation is assists with an average of almost 6 per game with a 164 for the season and was ranked 2nd in the Mid-American Conference in assists and assist/turnover ratio. Her team was ranked #1 in the nation in 3 point goals per game (9.25) and set a new NCAA record in the 99-00 season with Jaymee averaging 40% from the arc. She ended her career as a Falcon ranked 4th among BGSU’s All time Assist leaders.
After graduation, Jaymee returned to EN as a physical education & health teacher at Avilla. She coached GBB at Prairie Heights for two seasons and now is the Assistant Natatorium Director for Ft. Wayne Community schools.
James Abbs (1974-1978)
Two impressive records still stand today in East Noble football history and they are both held by the man we are honoring tonight. Jim Abbs, an East Noble athlete from 1974 to 1978, remains the only 4 year varsity starter to play both defense and offense and the only player with over 1,000 yards rushing and passing in East Noble history. He remains 10th in career passing yards and 9th in career scoring. Jim’s football career brought him accolades three times as All-conference, 2 times as All-area, a Regional, an Honorable Mention and as an All-state football player.
His most memorable moment at East Noble was to play on the 1976 Conference Championship team of only 27 players, only one of which was over 200 pounds. They opened the season against the defending Conference Champion Bluffton team. East Noble won 47-6 holding them to no score until late in the 4th quarter. Jim passed for 2 touchdowns, rushed for 1 touchdown, and kicked extra points.
Jim also played basketball for East Noble where he made the winning free throws for 3 games during his career. In one thriller versus Homestead, he made 2 free throws in the final seconds of the game, stole the inbound pass, was fouled and scored 2 more points to ice the game. Says coach Fred Inniger “Jim was one of the best under pressure athletes I ever had. When it came to crunch time, you wanted Jim in the game.”
Jim was a two time All-Conference and one time Regional qualifier in track where he excelled in the 800 and mile relays. He also competed in the 100, 220, 440 sprints and he ranks in the top 10 East Noble performances for the 100 and long jump. He finished his East Noble athletic career with a total of nine varsity letters for football, basketball and track. In 1978 he earned East Noble’s Pop Guymon Award which is given to the Outstanding Male Athlete of the Year. Jim is a permanent member of the EN’s Academic Hall of Fame.
Following high school, Jim was recruited by the University of Wisconsin in River Falls where he was a 4 year starter as quarterback for the football team. While quarterback, they won two conference championships and were National Playoff Quarterfinalists in 1979. Jim was named twice to All-conference teams and was a Co-captain his senior year. In 1981, Jim was the NAIA National Football Scholar Athlete of the year.
Further accomplishments included two time Conference Football Scholar Athlete of the Year, and he received the university’s highest non-academic award when he was presented the Chancellor’s Service Leadership Award and graduated with academic honors.
Jim moved on to Washburn University school of Law and was the 1984 Outstanding Legal Intern for the law school legal clinic and again graduated with academic honors.
While serving as the chief Public Defender of Noble County, Jim has spent many hours as a volunteer certified firefighter, fire medic and rescue diver for Orange Township Fire Department. Giving back to his former high school, Jim has spent six seasons as a volunteer coach both for East Noble football and the track team as pole vault coach.