1977 Hermann Trophy Winner
College: Hartwick College
Hometown: Trenton, New Jersey
Hartwick had a dominant team during Gazonas' four years at the school. His freshman year, Hartwick lost to Howard in the NCAA post-season tournament semifinals. In 1976, Hartwick made it to the semifinals before losing to Indiana.
In Gazona’s senior year, he won the Hermann Trophy and was a First-Team All-American. He and John Young led the Warriors to an undefeated season. They beat Brown 4–1 in the NCAA Tournament semis, and upended the two-time defending champion San Francisco Dons in the finals 2–1 to capture the national championship. A then-record 16,500 fans watched the game.
This was Hartwick's second consecutive Hermann Trophy winner as Glenn Myernick had won it the year prior.
The NASL was starting to come into its own in the late 1970s, and Billy was the #1 pick in the college draft by the Tulsa Roughnecks. He distinguished himself as one of the league’s most creative midfielders in three seasons with Tulsa and one with the Calgary Boomers. Billy would also go on to play and coach in indoor soccer.
Hartwick University inducted Gazonas into its Athletic Hall of Fame in 1995.