By Chris Chaney
New Richmond High School has announced the Class of 2013 for their New Richmond Lions Sports Hall of Fame, highlighted by four former Lions who went on to compete at the Division I college level.
The 2013 Class includes Tom Behymer, Class of 1956, David Duncan, Class of 2005, Nate Kramer, Class of 2007 and Eric Finan, Class of 2007.
The annual induction banquet will be held on Jan. 26 following the Lions’ varsity boys’ basketball game against Bethel-Tate, which takes place at 4 p.m.
The eldest of the Class of 2013, Tom Behymer played quarterback for the first football team at New Richmond in 1955. Behymer ran the first offensive play for the Lions as well as scoring the first touchdown and throwing the first touchdown pass in New Richmond history as he led the inaugural team to a 4-3-1 record.
Aside from football, Behymer played three season of baseball, during which he accrued a career batting average of over .400.
Behymer also lettered in basketball and track.
Behymer did not receive any all-league honors as a result of New Richmond being independent of an athletic conference during his time at the school.
Following graduation, Behymer played college baseball at Morehead State University, where he batted .325 for his career. Following seven straight pinch hits as a freshman, Behymer won the starting third base position, which he would hold throughout his career.
After competing, Behymer continued to contribute to the New Richmond athletic tradition, starting the youth football program at Pierce Elementary School, which is now Locust Corner Elementary, along with fellow Lions Hall of Famer Joe Hawkins. The program acts as a feeder to the middle and high schools.
Joining Behymer at this year’s induction will be 2005 New Richmond High School graduate David Duncan.
Duncan, a three-sport All-Star, excelled on the baseball diamond and more specifically, the pitcher’s mound. The lanky left-hander pitched for the Lions in three straight Division II district title games from 2003-2005.
Duncan is New Richmond’s career leader in wins (with 40), shutouts (with 14), strikeouts (with 413) and strikeouts per seven innings (with 10.9). Duncan also pitched three no-hitters and one perfect game as a Lion.
Duncan was a four-time Southern Buckeye Conference First Team All-Star and a three-time Player of the Year.
Duncan was also a two-time Southern Buckeye First Team All-Star in basketball and the school’s top golfer in his junior and senior years.
The southpaw went on to play three years at Georgia Tech University, where he compiled a 21-9 record with 211 strikeouts. He was named the team’s most valuable pitcher in 2007 and 2008.
Duncan earned his degree in business administration in 2011 while spending three years in the Houston Astros organization until a career-ending shoulder injury occurred in 2012.
Also being inducted is New Richmond’s first All-American athlete, Eric Finan.
Finan, who was the valedictorian of his 2007 graduating class, earned four medals for the Lions at the Ohio High School Track and Cross country Championships. His highest finish at the state meet was second place in the 3200-meter run in 2007.
Finan holds New Richmond records in the 800-meters, 1600-meters, 3200-meters and the 5k in cross country.
Finan was a three-time winner of the Runner of the Year in the SBC in cross country and a two-time Runner of the Year in track.
Following his graduation, Finan continued his academic and athletic dominance at the University of Cincinnati where he was named an All-American for both track and cross country in 2011. He was also named an Academic All-American as well. Finan was recognized as the 2011 Big East Conference Scholar Athlete of the Year and inducted into the UC Athletic Academic Hall of Fame.
He holds the records at Cincinnati for the indoor 3k, indoor 5k, outdoor 5k and outdoor 10k. He was also the 2011 Big East and NCAA Great Lakes regional champion and Big East champion in the 5k.
Academically, Finan earned his degree in mechanical engineering in four years and a Masters in business administration. Finan hopes to run as a sponsored professional athlete with a goal of competing in the 2016 and 2020 Olympics.
The final member of the 2013 Lions Hall of Fame is Nate Kramer. Kramer, a 2007 graduate of New Richmond High School, was the first swimmer in New Richmond history to qualify for the OHSAA state swimming meet.
He qualified for the 200-yard freestyle and 500-yard freestyle both his junior and senior seasons. Kramer placed eighth in the 200 as a senior.
Kramer was name the most valuable swimmer all four years at New Richmond. He holds schools records for the 200 and 500 freestyle, the 100-yard backstroke and the 200 individual medley.
Kramer, like Finan, attended the University of Cincinnati, where he thrived, qualifying for the Big East Conference Swimming Championships all four years as a Bearcat.