UIW Inducts Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2023

September 28, 2023

Sold Out Crowd on hand to Welcome Honorees

San Antonio – September 26, 2023 – A sold out crowd of more than 300 people gathered at the Student Engagement Center ballroom on the campus of the University of the Incarnate Word (UIW) on the night of September 22 to formally induct the UIW Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2023. From student-athletes to a history-making team to an inaugural award, there were many accolades and well-wishes for the athletes and athletic supporters who have helped make UIW Athletics what it is today.

“This class of Hall of Famers exemplifies what it is to be exceptional both on and off the playing field,” says UIW Athletic Director Richard Duran. “Around the athletic department we talk about being champions in the classroom, in the community and in competition. These individuals personified those words and we are blessed to have them be a part of our UIW family.”

Among the honorees, Terry Delgado, a standout volleyball player for Incarnate Word from 1995 to 1998, was remembered by her coaches as always thriving under pressure. Terry was named NAIA All-America, All-Region and Southwest Region Player of the Year while earning All-Heart of Texas Conference honors three times throughout her career. Delgado capped off a phenomenal senior season leading the team in kills, attacks and points. Terry is a double UIW graduate having earned her Bachelor of Education in 2000 from the Dreeben School of Education and a master’s degree in 2002.

Delgado says she always dreamed of being named an all-American player, but the Hall of Fame honor is different. “Being inducted into the Hall of Fame is even more of a realization of that because when I became an All-American that was the epitome, because I had reached my goal,” says Delgado. “I had made it, but this surpasses that. It is, there are no words. It is very humbling, but I am ultimately very honored.”

Grit, tenacity, edge… yet always polite and smiling. Those were the words used to describe Denzel Livingston, a star point guard for the UIW basketball team from 2011 to 2015. Among the many honors and awards, Denzel was named Southland All-Conference First Team and All-Defensive Team, NABC First Team All-District, College Sports Madness Southland Conference First Team, Breitbart Sports Southland First Team, 2014 College Hoops Daily Southland Player of the Year and was named UIW’s Male Student-Athlete of the Year in 2014 and 2015.

As a junior, Denzel averaged 20.3 points, 6.4 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 2.5 steals per game. He followed that with 21.5 points, 5.9 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 2.6 steals per game as a senior. Denzel earned a Bachelor of Business Administration from the H-E-B School of Business and Administration in 2017.

In his own words, Denzel says, “It doesn’t matter what school or how big or small it is… if you can play, someone is going to be out there looking for you. I made them believe. I am still making them believe to this day. There were a lot of doubters who doubted me, but I am in the Hall of Fame.”

Also honored that evening was Alex Yatsko, a man coach’s credit with putting UIW Men’s Swimming on the map and setting a bar that swimmers still strive to today. As a member of the Men’s Swimming team from 2008-2011, Yatsko was a two-time NCAA Division II National Champion (2008 and 2009). In addition, throughout his outstanding competitive career, Alex was named a NCAA Division II All-American a remarkable twenty times and was recognized as the All-Rocky Mountain Conference Swimmer of the Year. Out of the pool, Alex earned CSCAA Scholar All-America, CoSIDA Academic All-District, Rocky Mountain All-Academic and UIW Student-Athlete of the Year honors. Alex graduated from UIW in 2010 with a Bachelor of Computer Information Systems and earned a Master of Communication Arts in 2013.

“The experiences at UIW not only impacted my professional career, but also my personal life,” says Yatsko. “I was able to join and represent multiple Fortune 500 companies and also build a life-long relationship with my wife who also attended UIW. I would like to take a moment and thank UIW Athletics and the Hall of Fame Committee for this recognition.”

Meanwhile, on the Forever First UIW Football team, he will always be the forever first Cardinal football signee. Coaches and teammates hailed Trent Rios, a standout football player from 2009-2012, for his great leadership and his toughness on and off the field. He was named Lone Star Conference Honorable Mention All-Conference and All-Academic teams in addition to inclusion on the Commissioner’s Academic Honor Roll. Trent finished his football career holding 40 UIW records while also making a name for himself nationally, earning ESPN The Magazine Academic All-District, FCS Super Region Third Team and Capital One Academic All-District. Trent graduated from UIW in 2013 with a Bachelor of Business Administration.

On receiving the honor of being named to the UIW Athletics Hall of Fame, Rios says, “It’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience. It’s overwhelming. It’s something that… whenever I first got here, I could never even think of at the time. I could not have been able to do this without the friendships I have made. My family. My friends. It’s just kind of one of those things that comes full circle. I’m very blessed and privileged to have made it. It’s really an exciting feeling and I am excited to move forward with that.”

This year, an entire team was inducted in the Class of 2023. That team is the 2004 Men’s Soccer Team. With team members from over a dozen different countries, the Men’s Soccer Team was remembered for their character, culture and just how close knit the group of players became. The 2004 UIW Men’s Soccer team, coached by Dennis Currier, was crowned Southwest Conference Champions, won the NCAA Division II Midwest Regional Championships and made an NCAA Division II Championship Quarterfinals appearance.

“To me and I am sure for the rest of my teammates, this is a great accomplishment,” says team member Lubo Bogdanov. “The fact that we were recognized as a team makes it even more special. Not just as individuals but as a team. And when I speak about team, I am talking about… starting from the grounds crew to the athletic trainers to the coaches to the players. It’s just very humbling to be recognized almost twenty years after the fact. So, this is very special for us.”

And, for the first time, UIW presented a new award the inaugural Order of Merit. This award is presented to individuals who have made a significant contribution to the advancement of intercollegiate athletics at the University of the Incarnate Word. The first recipients of the award are Kate Crosby and her late husband Robert. Kate graduated from UIW in 1996 with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree and is an alumna of the inaugural class of students in the ADCaP program, now called the School of Professional Studies. Kate and Robert have been long-time friends and supporters of the University and were members of UIW’s Development Board. They were also instrumental in the development of the Quarterback Club, which became the present-day Cardinals Club. Kate and Robert embodied the spirit of UIW through their leadership in developing the football tailgate experience as well as in rallying community support for UIW football.

According to Crosby, “The Order of Merit means so much to me because it honors both of us and I think that is the most important thing. I was the first ADCaP graduate. I was the board chair. I had a chance to be on the Development Board for a number of years. But Robert truly embraced what it meant to support the school. And he supported me in everything that we did. So, for both of us to be honored with the Order of Merit just speaks volumes to what I hope we have been able to give back through the years.”

The University of the Incarnate Word extends a heartfelt thank you and congratulations to all of this year’s Class of 2023 UIW Athletics Hall of Fame inductees.