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Adamczak Sr., Lingenfelter Gulas, Woodfield Enshrined

Western New York Softball Hall of Fame

From the left are John Woodfield; Marcia Adamczak, wife of the late Jim Adamczak Sr.; and Sheilah Lingenfelter Gulas. The trio was enshrined into the Western New York Softball Hall of Fame at its induction ceremony Saturday night at the Lake Erie Italian Club. P-J photo by Scott Kindberg

BUFFALO — Three of the area’s finest softball players were honored Saturday night when they were inducted into the Western New York Softball Hall of Fame.

Jim Adamczak Sr., Sheilah Lingenfelter Gulas and John Woodfield were among 15 individuals enshrined at the 43rd event at the Lake Erie Italian Club.

Adamczak, one of Chautauqua County’s greatest pitchers, played from 1958 through 1975 during which he tossed more than 25 no-hitters and four perfect games while pitching for teams in Western New York and Pennsylvania. In a career that covered more than 1,200 games, Adamczak averaged more than 17 strikeouts per game during one 10-year span. Perhaps his most memorable performance was when he tossed a two-hitter and struck out 17 in a 1-0 victory over Eddie Feigner of the King & His Court at College Stadium in 1967.

Gulas, a 1979 Southwestern Central School graduate, enjoyed a 31-year career as a collegiate head coach, the last 21 at Ashland University. Compiling 30 wins in her final season, Gulas surpassed the 900-victory mark and won nearly 66% of her games (929-487-1). The 2017 NFCA Hall of Fame inductee collected 723 of those wins with the Eagles and led them to 12 NCAA Division II tournaments and collected five Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference titles and three conference Coach-of-the-Year awards. In 1998, Gulas guided Ashland to a school-record 53 wins and a No. 3 national ranking.

Both Adamczak (Class of 2005) and Gulas (Class of 2018) are inductees of the Chautauqua Sports Hall of Fame.

Woodfield, a 1976 Maple Grove High School graduate, was a third baseman on two national championship teams with the Jock Shop and one with Fudge’s Sub Shop, a three-time first-team All-American (1982-84), a two-time second-team All-American (1985 and 1989), and, in 1984, was named the tournament Most Valuable Player.

The WNY Softball Hall of Fame, according to the induction ceremony program, was founded and organized by its first president, the late Joe Brandt. The first induction took place in the old War Memorial Stadium before a Buffalo Bisons baseball game with thousands of people watching.

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