It was a Memorial Day Weekend to be celebrated for Carpinteria’s Pat Moorhouse and Debra (Lipson) Ekola, who were inducted into the first ever Santa Barbara City College Vaqueros Hall of Fame Class on Saturday, May 25. The two athletic standouts were honored along with the 1977 women’s track and field State Championship team, longtime football coach Bob Dinaberg, founder and coach of the school’s athletic program, the late Albert “Bud” Revis, three-sports star Marina Gomez, former Major League Baseball player, the late Gary Woods and former National League Football Player Booker T. Brown. The event was hosted by local broadcaster and voice of the Santa Barbara Foresters’ baseball radio broadcasts, John Martony.
Local Carpinterian and former tennis and volleyball coach, Pat Moorhouse, was among the first inductees into the school’s inaugural Hall of Fame Class. Moorhouse started her career at Yucca Valley High School, where she was also inducted into the Hall of Fame. With last weekend’s induction, the retired Athletic Department Chair is now a member of five Hall of Fames, including the Santa Barbara Athletic Round Table, the California Community College Tennis Coaches and the California Community College Athletic Association. Coaching both women’s volleyball and tennis, Moorhouse compiled a record of 378-44 between the two sports. “I focused on effort versus outcome, because I felt that effort you can control, outcome you don’t always have the control,” explained Moorhouse.
One of Moorehouse’s players, Carpinterian Debbie (Lipson) Ekola was also inducted into the first Hall of Fame Class. Ekola played for Moorhouse at SBCC, helping to kickstart a dynasty in which the Vaqueros won 14 of 15 WSC Championships. Prior to that, Ekola was an accomplished athlete at Carpinteria High School, where she collected eight varsity letters: four in tennis, three in track and field and one in gymnastics. “I was part of the first generation to reap the benefits of high school sports … and scholarship ability,” said Ekola who came in after the Title IX federal ruling which gave female students equal opportunity to compete. And compete she did. Ekola was seemingly unbeatable during her career at SBCC. In ’79 and ’80 she won WSC Player of the Year, going undefeated in both singles and doubles play. The first year, her partner was her sister Sherrie Lipson. “Debbie was a tremendous tennis player and is still a valued member of the SBCC family,” said current Athletic Director Rocco Constantino. Ekola currently works at SBCC, and has for 36 years.
The event also recognized the ’77 women’s track and field team that, with six members, captured SBCC’s first of 11 state titles. Head football coach Bob Dinaberg was honored for having compiled a 119-62-3 record, leading the Vaqueros to eight conference titles along the way. Volleyball, basketball and track and field star Marina Gomez was honored. Gomez played volleyball under the tutelage of Moorhouse, and as a sophomore, led the Vaqueros to a 30-4 record. Gary Woods, the first centerfielder ever for the Toronto Blue Jays franchise, was also inducted along with Booker T. Brown who played offensive line, once protecting NFL Hall of Fame quarterback Dan Fouts as a San Diego Charger. Also honored was Bud Revis, who worked at the college from ’51 to ’76, and served as SBCC’s head coach of football, basketball and baseball teams and Director of Athletics. Revis was also the Chairman of the Physical Education Department, Chairman of the SBCC Athletics Committee and Commissioner of the South Central Conference.
The inauguration of an SBCC Sports Hall of Fame marks a long overdue recognition for a great community college sports program.