Washington College Hall of Fame inductee Claudio Gonzalez '87 passed away Wednesday evening at the age of 56. Gonzalez, an All-American tennis player while attending Washington College, was inducted into the school's Hall of Fame in 2004.
In his first season of competition for the Shoremen in 1985, Claudio led his team to a then school-record 17 victories and a regional ranking. The following year, he was instrumental in the College's initial appearance in the NCAA Division III Tournament. The team finished seventh in the nation. In 1987, Claudio burst onto the national scene in collegiate tennis. He captured the Middle Atlantic Collegiate Athletic Conference singles championship, becoming the first Shoreman to win a conference singles title. At the NCAA Division III National Singles Championship, Claudio reached the quarterfinals, qualifying him for All-American honors. Returning as a graduate student in 1988, Claudio was part of a third straight Middle Atlantic Conference Championship team and another NCAA Division III Semifinal finish.
Caludio is one of only five players in Washington College tennis history to register 100 or more singles wins, finishing with 113. Including his 74 doubles victories, he had an overall winning percentage of .760. Claudio was voted his team's Most Improved Player in 1986 and, upon graduation, received the Thomas Reeder Spedden Medal.