Jan. 25, 2014
On Saturday, January 25, Providence College honored three of its all-time greatest basketball players. Former Friar men's basketball players Kevin Stacom '74 and Joe Hassett'77 and women's basketball player Tracy Lis '92 were honored at the men's and women's home games that day as banners were unveiled with their names and numbers (Stacom #25, Hassett #10 and Lis #22). The banners were presented at a halftime ceremony of the men's and women's games. All three former Friars joined the Friar Legends Forever Tradition.
The Providence College Athletic Department also held a dinner to honor Stacom, Hassett and Lis. The event was held at the Omni Hotel in Downtown Providence.
The Friar Legends Forever Tradition began in 1996. To earn the honor, the player or coach must have made a significant impact on Friar basketball and he/she must have received national recognition during his/her career at Providence.
Stacom and Hassett became the 10th and 11th members of the Friar men's basketball family to be honored as part of the Friar Legends Forever Tradition. Lenny Wilkens `60 was the first PC player to have his number retired in 1996. In 2007, the College honored former coaches Joe Mullaney and Dave Gavitt. In 2008, Jimmy Walker `67, Marvin Barnes `74 and Ernie DiGregorio `73 had their numbers retired. In 2009, the College honored John Egan`61 as his number was retired. The most recent Friars to earn the honor were Ray Flynn `63 and Vinnie Ernst `63 in 2011.
"Playing for Coach Gavitt at Providence College was one of the highlights of my career," Stacom said. "I appreciate the College recognizing me today. There are so many special players that have earned this honor over the years, I truly feel blessed."
Stacom, a native of Elmont, N.Y., played two seasons (1972-74) for the Friars after transferring from Holy Cross. In just two seasons he earned the reputation of being one of the most consistent and effective shooters ever at Providence, helping lead the Friars to a 55-8 mark during his career. His .527 field goal percentage is tops all-time amongst Friar guards. In 63 career games, he scored 1,143 points (18.1 ppg) and shot 83.4 percent from the free-throw line. His 18.1 points per game average ranks sixth all-time and his 83.4 percent from the line is 12th at Providence. In 1973, Stacom helped lead the Friars to a 27-4 mark and a trip to the Final Four. He was named to the NCAA East Region All-Tournament Team. In his junior season, he averaged 17.8 points per game. As a senior, Stacom helped the Friars post a 28-4 record and advance to the Sweet 16. In his final season at Providence, he averaged 18.5 points per game. In recognition of his stellar play in 1974, Stacom was named Second Team All-America, First Team All-ECAC, All-East and All-New England. He was selected in the second round of the 1974 NBA Draft by the Boston Celtics. He played six seasons in the NBA.
"Providence College has been such a big part of my life," Hassett said. "Today is another chapter in that story. I love PC and have so many great memories of games over the years. It is a great honor to have my number hanging from the rafters with all those great players."
Hassett, a native of Providence, was one of the greatest shooters to ever play for the Friars. He scored 1,828 points (14.7 ppg) in four seasons and ranks sixth all-time in scoring at Providence. During his four seasons, the Friars posted a 93-31 record and reached post-season play each year (NCAA Tournament - 1974 and 1977 and NIT - 1975 and 1976). He is one of only seven players to lead the Friars in scoring for three consecutive seasons. Hassett holds the Friar single season free throw percentage mark (64-68, .941) and ranks second all-time at Providence with an .865 percentage (148-171) for his career. He also holds the Friar career field goal record with 840 made in 124 games. A three-time All-New England selection (1975-77), a three-time NABC All-District selection (1975-77), a two-time ECAC First Team All-Star (1976-77) and a two-time All-East honoree (1976-77), Hassett was an Associated Press Honorable Mention All-America selection in 1976 and a NABC Third-Team All-American in 1977. Hassett was selected in the third round of the 1977 NBA Draft by the Seattle Supersonics. He played six seasons in the NBA and helped the 1979 Seattle team capture the NBA title.
Lis became the second player in Providence College women's basketball history to have her jersey retired, and the third honoree overall. In 2010, former Associate Athletic Director Helen Bert and former Friar great Kathy Finn Hill `84 were honored.
"I'm proud to be a Friar," Lis said. "It definitely was the right decision to go to Providence College. Coming back now and being here I see how great of a place PC really is. This was a wonderful day, seeing that banner unveiled was really special."
Lis, a native of Cromwell, Conn., is one of the greatest players to ever wear a Friar uniform. She played for the Providence College women's basketball team from 1988-92, and is the program's all-time leading scorer with 2,534 career points. She is the only Friar to eclipse the 2,000-point plateau in the history of the program. Lis also ranks fifth in career rebounding with 821 boards. She also ranks fourth all-time among BIG EAST Conference career leaders in points (1,296), ninth in scoring average (19.6 ppg), third in free throws made (302), ninth in steals (183) and 11th in field goals made (455) in conference action. In 1990, she led the Friars to the program's first BIG EAST Tournament title. That same season, the Friars advanced to the "Sweet 16" of the NCAA Tournament. In 1991, she guided the program to its highest national ranking in the Associated Press Top-25 at No. 15. In 1992, Lis received the BIG EAST Special Achievement Award and was named ECAC Player of the Year. Lis was a two-time First-Team All-BIG EAST selection. In 2004, Lis was one of 15 players honored as a member of the BIG EAST Conference Silver Anniversary Team. During her career, Providence made four-consecutive trips to the NCAA Tournament and compiled a 96-31 record (.755). Providence also advanced to the BIG EAST Championship game three-straight years (1989-91). Lis played professionally for the New England Blizzard in the American Basketball League (ABL).