2006 Athletic Hall of Fame Inductees

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Michael J. Heathcott, BSBA'91
1991 was a magical season for the Creighton baseball team. That year, the Bluejays became the first local team to make the College World Series and set the city abuzz. But the seventh-seeded Bluejays were the underdog entering their first game against the second-seeded Clemson Tigers. Clemson held the nation’s best record – a gaudy 60 wins with only eight losses – and led the country in scoring at 10.4 runs per game.

Creighton sent senior Mike Heathcott to the mound. Coach Jim Hendry described his starter as “a clutch guy” – and the Chicago native proved it on that muggy June day.

Heathcott took a one-hit shutout into the sixth inning. And, after Clemson posted four runs in the sixth, he shut down the powerful Tigers over the last three innings to earn the 8-4, complete-game victory in front of more than 16,000 frenzied fans at Rosenblatt Stadium and a national television audience.

Mike’s former teammates describe their co-captain as a natural leader, a competitive player and a great teammate. The second-team All-American went on to play professionally with the Chicago White Sox, Chicago Cubs and California Angels organizations. He still holds Creighton's record for career wins, with 33.

While he now resides in Arizona, where he is a devoted husband and father of two children, Mike will always be remembered for a shining performance on college baseball’s biggest stage.

It is with great pride that Creighton University inducts Mike Heathcott into the Athletic Hall of Fame this eleventh day of April, two thousand and six.

Shannon Struby, BA'95
Athletic achievement can never entirely be captured by statistics. The numbers cannot tell the whole story of the heart behind the athlete. Such is the case for former Creighton women’s basketball player Shannon Struby. Shannon posted some impressive numbers during her four years at Creighton, from 1990 to 1994. She remains ranked in Creighton’s career top-10 in rebounding, scoring, scoring average, field goals and field goal percentage. Her 824 career rebounds rank second in school history.

She was named the Western Athletic Conference Freshman of the Year in 1991, and was a first-team all-WAC performer as a sophomore and a first-team all-Missouri Valley Conference player as a junior.

But Shannon was about more than personal accolades. Despite a spate of major injuries, Shannon led her team to two NCAA Tournaments and was twice named the team’s “Most Inspirational Player.”

After graduation, Shannon played professionally with the Nebraska Express for two years, helping her team to a league championship in 1995. She went on to pursue a career in physical therapy and is now a physical therapy assistant at Methodist Hospital Physical Therapy. She also serves as an assistant women’s basketball coach at Dana College and is a certified personal trainer.

It is with great pride that Creighton University inducts Shannon Struby into the Athletic Hall of Fame this eleventh day of April, two thousand and six.

Heidi Geier Woodard, BA'99
During her four years at Creighton, Heidi Geier Woodard hit the books with the same passion and determination that she hit a softball. A graduate of Roncalli Catholic, Woodard twice earned Academic All-American honors while leading Creighton to back-to-back Missouri Valley Conference regular-season titles in 1998 and 1999.

She ranks second in school history with 243 career hits, and her .358 career batting average ranks third among the school’s leaders.

Between 1998 and 1999, the Creighton second baseman became the first player in school history to record two 70-hit seasons. She hit a whopping .403 in 1999, the same year she earned second-team Easton All-American honors and the Bluejays captured their first MVC Tournament title.

Not surprisingly, her three years as a first-team all-MVC selection were matched by her three years as a conference first-team scholar-athlete honoree.

She remains Creighton’s all-time stolen base leader, with 83. She also is one of five Bluejays with 200 career hits and 100 career runs scored.

Heidi earned her bachelor of arts degree in journalism with an emphasis in public relations in 1999. Today, she serves in community relations and organizational development at Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska.

For her success both in the classroom and on the field, it is with great pride that Creighton University inducts Heidi Geier Woodard into the Athletic Hall of Fame this eleventh day of April, two thousand and six.