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University Liggett School announces Class of 2023 Alumni Athletic Hall of Fame Inductees

Five members of the University Liggett School community who exemplify athletic excellence, character and a life-long commitment to sports will be inducted into the school’s Athletic Hall of Fame on Thursday, September 28, at the Boll Campus Center. These are the five outstanding alumni who have been selected for induction into the ULS 2023 Alumni Athletic Hall of Fame:

● Thomas Gage ’66 GPUS: While at Grosse Pointe University School (GPUS), he played baseball, football, soccer, basketball and hockey. Gage was a sportswriter and journalist for 39 years with The Detroit News. He was the Detroit Tigers beat writer from 1979-2015. As a writer, has covered more than 5,000 baseball games in 54 ballparks. Gage also worked as a reporter for Fox Sports and The Sporting News. He was inducted into the writers wing of the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 2015 and is a recipient of the 2015 J. G. Taylor Spink Award — the highest award given by the Baseball Writers' Association of America (BBWAA). He was inducted into the Michigan Sports Hall of Fame in 2016 and the Michigan Journalism Hall of Fame in 2018.

● Bruce Barit ’68 GPUS: While at GPUS, Barit was a three-year varsity member of the soccer, basketball and tennis teams. He was a four-year varsity athlete in baseball. He earned first-team all-state honors in basketball his senior year. Barit was part of the State Champion tennis team his sophomore, junior and senior years. And he was the State Class C-D Tennis Singles Champion his senior year. While at Wesleyan University, he played varsity tennis, squash, basketball and football. He also played freshman, soccer, basketball and tennis. He has been President of Advanced Storage Technology, a company involved in public works to store roadside salt throughout the country. He still plays tennis, golf and pickleball.

● Abigail Tompkins Johannson ’97: While at ULS, Johannson was a four year varsity member of the field hockey, soccer, and ice hockey teams. She was the senior year captain of the 1996 state champion hockey team, and was recruited to play NCAA Division 1 hockey. As part of the soccer team, Johannson won the Metro Conference championship in ‘94, ‘95, ‘96 and ‘97. During her senior year, she scored 26 goals, which was a school record at the time. As part of the hockey team she won state championships ‘94, ‘95, ‘96 and ‘97. Johannson went on to play NCAA Division 1 soccer at the University of Michigan. While at U of M the team was nationally ranked in teh top 25, made the NCAA Tournament four times and won the Big Ten Tournament. She was named to the Big Ten All-Academic Team her senior year.

● Kevin Espy ’98: While at ULS, Espy was a four year varsity member of the football and lacrosse teams, a three year varsity member of the basketball team and a member of the track and baseball teams. In 1997, he was named to the All-Conference first team, the All Metro-Detroit team and All-State honorable mention in football. The team also won the Metro Conference championship in 1997. He was one member of the record-setting 1997 relay team and went to regionals in the 100m in 1998. Espy was an All-American honorable mention in lacrosse his senior year and received All-State and All-League accolades his junior and senior years. While at Columbia University he played four years varsity football and is on record as an all-time letter winner in the sport. Following graduation, Espy spent more than 15 years as an educator and coach in New York City.

● Mags B. Dillon ’02: While at ULS Dillon was two-time co-captain and three-time MVP of the ice hockey team, and two-time captain of the softball team that won districts and were regional finalists during senior year. Dillon’s batting average is in the MHSAA all-time top 10. Dillon also played field hockey and was an MVP and on the All-State first team. Dillon was a Terrill Newnan Scholar (all four years), valedictorian, president of the student council, and winner of the 2002 Gatorade “Will to Win” athlete scholarship for the state of Michigan. Dillon attended Princeton University and between 2002-2006 played on the rugby team that won the Eastern Pennsylvania Rugby Union and Ivy League Championships (2003), advanced to the USA Rugby National Championship Game (2004) and played USA Rugby Sweet Sixteen (2006).

The Alumni Athletic Hall of Fame honors and celebrates the rich athletic history of University Liggett School and its predecessor schools. The award recognizes alumni who have displayed solid character and citizenship while at University Liggett School or one of its predecessor schools, had an exceptional athletic record while in school and have achieved distinguished post-graduate athletic competition or coaching.

The 2023 Alumni Athletic Hall of Fame inductees were reviewed and selected by the Alumni Athletic Hall of Fame Committee, which comprises inductees, past and current coaches, our athletic department staff, and our alumni relations team.