SAINT MARY OF THE WOODS, Ind. – The Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College (SMWC) Department of Athletics inducted its inaugural class on Saturday, February 4 at the Le Fer Hall Ballroom. The inaugural class consists of five inductees ranging from administrators, coaches and student-athletes. Those inducted were Mary Joseph Pomeroy, SP (women’s basketball), Barbara Doherty, SP (former SMWC president), Tammy Smelcer (softball), Brooke Griffith (women’s basketball) and Deanna Bradley (head women’s basketball coach and athletic director).
Sister Mary Joseph Pomeroy was a student-athlete at SMWC from 1918-1921 and is the department’s namesake, as all student-athletes proudly call themselves Pomeroys. Pomeroy laid the foundation for what it means to be a student and an athlete at SMWC. She played in the first intercollegiate women’s basketball game in school history, as well as the first intercollegiate women’s basketball game in the state of Indiana.
She is the epitome of what it means to be an SMWC student-athlete. Her persona as a student and as an athlete has defined the department of athletics’ legacy. Her competitive spirit and commitment to all that it means to be a student-athlete has provided the SMWC Department of Athletics with a strong foundation for continuous prosperity.
As SMWC’s president from 1984-1998, Sister Barbara Doherty was instrumental in approving the implementation of the Pomeroy nickname and the first athletic scholarships at the College. Her open-mindedness and dedication to doing what was necessary for the growth of the Department of Athletics was the beginning to what is now 10 athletic scholarship teams at SMWC.
Doherty is a great example of how educated decisions and teamwork can lead to the betterment of an entire institution. Her ability to hire the right people and foster the ideas of her staff was instrumental in the growth of athletics at SMWC
Tammy Smelcer-Welborn was a softball student-athlete from 1998-2002 and is one of the most highly decorated student-athletes in SMWC’s history. The two-time National Small College Athletic Association (NSCAA) All-American and one-time United States Collegiate Athletic Association (USCAA) All-American helped bring two national championships to the softball program and put her name on almost every page of the SMWC softball record book.
She finished her career with more hits (225), runs scored (166) and stolen bases (79) than any other Pomeroy in school history. As a pitcher, Smelcer-Welborn is the all-time leader in ERA (1.47), win percentage (.875), wins (57), complete games (59) and appearances (91).
In 2001, she recorded the best single-season performance at the plate in school history with 72 hits. In that same year, she scored a school record 53 runs and as a pitcher recorded a program best 1.01 ERA in 33 appearances. In 2002, she recorded a school record of seven triples and won more games than anyone in a single season with 23 wins as a pitcher.
Brooke Griffith-Langford spent 1998-02 as a women’s basketball student-athlete at The Woods. Griffith-Langford is the program’s second all-time leading scorer with 1,685 career points. She held the top spot until 2013 after earning it in 2002.
She is second all-time in career free throw percentage (.763), three-point percentage (.346) and is third in program history in assists (347) and fourth in free throws made (272).
Griffith-Langford earned USCAA All-Academic honors her senior season and holds the single game record for points scored with 41 in her junior year. She also holds the single season three-point percentage record, making .462 percent of her shots her senior year.
Deanna Bradley has been with the department of athletics since 1991 as both athletic director and head women’s basketball coach. Her many years of service bettering the department is evident, as athletics was practically nonexistent when she first arrived. Together, with fellow hall of famer Sister Barbara Doherty, the two led the emergence of athletics as a vital part of SMWC.
She has guided the women’s basketball program for 23 years, taking a brief reprieve from her post for two seasons in the early 2000s. She has led the basketball program to five national tournament berths and got the Pomeroys within one win of a national title after finishing NSCAA runners-up in 1999-00. She has coached 10 student-athletes into the 1,000 point club, nine USCAA All-Americans and 29 all-academic selections.
As athletic director, she has overseen the creation of 10 scholarship teams and the growth of the department as a whole and still currently serves the department as both athletic director and head women’s basketball coach.