Camera after camera was passed around after each picture was taken. Ashley (Everett) Zeier was the focus of each photograph, as the former Webster University women’s soccer standout posed with her family in the lobby of Grant Gymnasium.
Zeier, Laura (Stuhlman) Peiter and Jeanne (Zes) Gilbert were officially inducted into the Webster University Athletics Hall of Fame as the 2012 class.
The Hall of Fame induction ceremony took place during halftime of the Webster men’s basketball game on Feb. 4. All three former Webster student athletes were presented with letter jackets and trophies. The three athletes had a postgame dinner and get-together with their families and friends in the Sunnen Lounge.
“It’s still just almost kind of surreal,” Zeier said. “It really hasn’t sunk in at all yet, I guess. My favorite part of the day (was) probably being able to share this with my family and my friends.”
Zeier was a defender for the women’s soccer team from 1999 to 2002 and was the only four-year captain in the program’s history. The team won three St. Louis Intercollegiate Athletic Conference championships and made three NCAA tournament appearances, as Zeier compiled a 65-10-4 career record.
“I just always gave my all, and this was never something that I expected to receive,” Zeier said. “Just by being myself and playing like I know I can play, it got me here.”
Gilbert and Peiter played softball and women’s basketball together during their time at Webster in the late ‘90s and early 2000s. During Peiter’s career at Webster, the softball team won the SLIAC title all four years. Gilbert was there for three of those four seasons after transferring from McKendree University.
Returning to Webster’s campus with family and friends stirred up memories for the newest Hall of Fame members.
“It definitely brings back memories, especially walking into the gym downstairs, just walking into the building, turning the corner and seeing the lobby,” Gilbert said. “It’s a nice flash of memories.”
Zeier said the campus has transformed since her time as a student athlete at Webster.
“Everything looks so different,” Zeier said. “They’ve expanded so much and grown, and it’s just kind of nice to see all of the changes for the better since I’ve graduated.”
All three women felt honored to be the Webster Athletics Hall of Fame’s third induction class. Their names were revealed on the Hall of Fame banner at halftime.
“(I feel) honored,” Peiter said after the game concluded. “It’s really neat to be a part of this. I think it’s great that they created this and put this on. It’s been great to see the people that are here.”
Peiter said she has fond memories of playing alongside her Webster teammates, like fellow Hall of Fame inductee Gilbert.
“Enjoy it while it’s here because it goes so fast,” Peiter said. “You play, but the best part that comes out of it is the people you meet and the people that are around you.
“I had a coach that once told me your high school friends are sort of your original friends, the people you grew up with. But your college friends are your lifelong friends. I think that’s definitely the case. You keep in touch with them a lot better in most cases. That’s the best part.”