Inducted January 27, 2006
Joe-Max Moore, Oklahoma’s first U.S. National Team player, grew up in Tulsa hanging around the Tulsa Roughnecks of the North American Soccer League and playing for Milan Dovedan, who “influenced me most as a coach,” says Joe-Max. Because his father, Carl, owned the Roughnecks, Joe-Max’s early years were spent with international players from the NASL at his Tulsa home until the family moved to Irvine, California when he was 14.
While in California, Joe-Max attended Irvine High School and was a scholarship player at UCLA. In 1992, he scored a bending free-kick goal (a skill he would be noted for) against Italy in the Summer Olympics and began a decade of appearances with the United States Men’s National Team. In 1993 he led the USA in scoring with 8 goals, the most ever by a US player, and in the ’95 Copa America he converted his penalty kick in a shootout win over Mexico. Joe-Max scored 4 goals for the US in 1996 in qualifying play for the 98 World Cup and by the 2002 World Cup he had played in two of the USA’s first three World Cup appearances in nearly 30 years.
On the international stage, Joe-Max left the US in1994 to pursue opportunities overseas, joining FC Saarbruecken
in Germany where he scored a club-best 13 goals in just 25 games. Returning home in 1996, Joe-Max joined the New England Revolution of Major League Soccer and through 1999 was the club’s all-time leading scorer and named MVP in 1996. In 2000, Joe-Max signed with Everton in the English Premier League and scored 8 goals in his first season. During his three years with the Everton squad, Joe-Max played in two FA Cup and scored goals in back-to-back matches against Derby County and Leeds United.
Rejoining the Revolution in 2003, Joe-Max played through the 2004 season and scored 41 career goals with 35 assists, a Revolution record. In January 2005, Joe-Max announced his retirement from professional soccer. His 24 goals for the US ranked him third in national history at the time of his retirement.
The future holds possibilities of coaching and continued charity work for the former Oklahoman who remains involved with Special Olympics. Joe-Max enjoys his retirement at home in Florida with his wife, Martha, and his four-year-old son, Tommy, who is enjoying the benefits of a World Cup veteran as a coach.
Inducted January 27, 2006
In 1945, a young Juergen Gohlke left his native Germany to immigrate to Oklahoma. Arriving in Shawnee, where his sponsoring family lived, Juergen began familiarizing himself with not only a new family but also a new country and state. After graduating from Shawnee High School, Juergen began working for Shawnee Steel, a job he would hold until leaving the state in 1996 for Florida.
The state of soccer in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s in Oklahoma was one of pickup games in and around college towns and metropolitan areas. In Shawnee, Juergen found a group of college players from around the world playing his favorite sport of soccer. With the help of Father Paul Zahler, Juergen began forming teams to play at St. Gregory’s (which in the early days was a high school and then a two-year college) and surrounding colleges and universities.
“Most of the soccer players I worked with,” says Juergen, “were from private schools in the Tulsa and Oklahoma City areas as well as from New York and South America. The local athletes at OBU (where he coached for several years) and St. Gregory’s who had little soccer background loved the game, but we had to teach them how to play it. For most of them it was an unknown game.”
During the 1970’s, Juergen would play, coach, and referee games all in the same weekend in the fledgling Oklahoma Soccer Football Association that would eventually become Frontier Country Soccer Association and Oklahoma Soccer Association. Because Juergen was so well organized, Father Paul asked him to become the secretary of the new association - Oklahoma Soccer Association. Juergen held the office for nine years during the tenure of Father Paul as president. One of Juergen’s significant contributions to Oklahoma Soccer was his writing of the organization’s first constitution and bylaws to govern soccer development across the state.
In addition to other duties, Juergen organized workshops for both referees and coaches in Oklahoma and continued to officiate until the early 1980’s. Such interest in the sport was fueled by Juergen’s dream to see Oklahoma become a leader in soccer. Nearly forty years later, Oklahoma Soccer Association is an example of his determination and leadership.
Inducted January 27, 2006
Walter Schnoor arrived in Tulsa, Oklahoma in 1958 to work as VW mechanic. Unable to speak English, he rented an apartment at the YMCA in downtown Tulsa and began to learn the language by attending movies. He had seen versions of “From Here to Eternity” and “The Glenn Miller Story” dubbed in German while living in his hometown of Kiel. “The first words I learned,” says Walter, “were ‘Forget it!’ and ‘coffee and donuts.’” Soon he had purchased an automobile and furthered his language studies by going to drive-in movies and making himself learn 20 words of English a day. After a period of time he rented a small apartment and the owner of the apartment said he should meet her niece. The blind date led to marriage to his wife of 40 plus years, Peggy. The Schnoors have three daughters – Pat, Carrie, and Christi, as well as Walter’s son, Rick. Walter and Peggy have four grandchildren Georg, Alan, Katie, and Samantha.
In 1964, Walter found soccer players practicing at Will Rogers High School and he began playing his favorite sport again. He had been selected as a professional player for the Hamburg SV team, but his father would not sign the necessary papers and Walter became a mechanic instead. Walter’s love of the game and organizational skills came to the front when he helped organized the Tulsa International Soccer Club in 1967 that provided the impetus for adult soccer in Tulsa. From the TISC group of international players came future youth coaches, referees, and administrators and the nucleus of Green Country Soccer and eventually Oklahoma Soccer Association. One method of attracting Oklahomans to watch soccer was to sponsor exhibition matches and Walter helped organize two games against the Chicago Sting in 1980. A group of Oklahoma City all-stars played against the Sting in Moore and the following week played a group of Tulsa all-stars in Tulsa.
Walter’s playing skills led him to participate in the USSF Amateur Cup, the Dallas German American Club, and the GCSA Adult League. He also found time to referee both youth and adult matches during this time.
Walter decided that for soccer to grow in Oklahoma, it would need a goal such as acceptance as a varsity sport in high school and college. To that end, he began a kids’ league and coached young players. Walter encouraged adult coaches to form youth teams and coach in Green Country. By now, Walter owned his own VW shop and his business sense spilled over to the administration of the early years of Green Country. He began contacting his customers and promoting the idea of soccer at Tulsa University.
With the help of Getty Oil, Walter founded the TU soccer program and became its first coach. For several years, the team would pile in Walter’s blue VW bus and tour the state playing matches. Soon scholarships were being offered to play college soccer and get an education. Walter is most proud of his students who took advantage of their soccer skills to get a degree.
As the state’s first head coach and one of its early players, Walter continues to support and enjoy the game he first played years ago in his native Germany. However, his little VW shop is no longer. Just as Oklahoma’s soccer program has moved on, so has Walter. His German Motor