URI Athletics Hall of Fame - Q&A with Kellie Cookus

KINGSTON, R.I. -- The newest class of the University of Rhode Island Athletics Hall of Fame is set to be inducted next week - Saturday, March 7.

Six former Rhode Island standouts - five student-athletes and a head coach – Mark Brockwell, Tom Cataldo, Kellie Cookus, Tom Drennan, Michael LaBarbera, and Stephanie Ulicny Domin - will be honored as part of the 2015 Hall of Fame class.  

Leading up to the induction ceremony, GoRhody.com will feature each inductee in a brief Q&A highlighting their reaction to becoming a member of the Hall of Fame.

Kellie Cookus - Softball
Cookus finished her URI career as one of the most decorated softball players in program history.  A two-time Atlantic 10 Player of the Year, Cookus was honored as the top player in the conference in 1997 and 1998.  A three-time First Team All-A-10 selection, Cookus helped guide the Rams to their only program appearance in the A-10 Championship game in 1996.  In just three seasons with the Rams, she finished with 14 school records including single-season and career marks in batting average, slugging percentage, on-base percentage, hits, doubles, triples, RBI, and total bases.  She also ranks in Rhody’s top 10 in runs scored, home runs, and stolen bases.    

Q: What was your reaction when you received the official call to the Hall?

A: It was exciting! I was very excited to hear that I was being inducted into the Hall of Fame.

Q: What is your best memory from your time at URI?

A: My teammates are a part of all of my fondest memories. Traveling all over the country to so many different places made us so close and we all still remain friends today. I am very grateful for URI for helping to foster those lifelong friendships. 

Q: What are you looking forward to most, in regards to the ceremony?

A: I’m looking forward to having my parents there with me for the induction. They have been my biggest fans throughout my entire softball career, from when I played Little League, all the way through my Rhode Island career. They were at every game, no matter where we were playing, from Florida to Maine. Their encouragement is what I remember the most and what I will take with me when I attend my children’s games as they grow older and start to compete.

Q: What has your life/career/etc. been like since you left URI?

A: After URI, I went on to become the Graduate Assistant Softball Coach at Temple University and I achieved a Master’s in Sports Management while at Temple. Once I graduated, I moved back to my hometown and began to build a little team of my own, my own family. What makes me most proud is that I am now coaching my twin daughters’ t-ball team, so it is pretty cool for me to see how the progression works. Hopefully, they will get the same opportunity to experience as many great coaches and teammates as I have along the way.

The Hall of Fame induction ceremony brunch will be held on Saturday, March 7 at Quidnessett Country Club in North Kingstown, R.I.  Later that afternoon, the Hall of Fame class will be honored at halftime of the men's basketball game versus Saint Joseph’s.

For more information or to RSVP, please contact the Athletics Development office at (401) 874-2389 or email John May at johnmay@uri.edu.