Author: Marvin Chou

Marvin Chou's Article

Grissom’s Darian Buss Ties AHSAA Fast-Pitch Record for Hits in a Game

    MONTGOMERY – Darian Buss of Grissom High School tied the AHSAA state record for hits in a single game last week going 6-for-6 in a 12-11 loss versus Central-Florence last week. Her hitting barrage thrust the senior into this week’s AHSAA Softball Spotlight.
    Hitting No. 2 in the lineup for Coach Michael Robertson’s Tigers, six collected six singles and scored two runs – highlighting a seven-run ninth-inning rally that fell short when Central came back to plate eight runs in the bottom of the inning, however, to win the game. 
    The six hits ties the AHSAA fast-pitch record held by three others. Carrie Walker of Baker had six hits in a 2004; Shakira Johnson and Tonje Willis, both of Choctaw County, tied the record with six hits each in the same game, a 23-11 win over Milly in 2014.
    The hitting performance edged out a “grand” performance by Hazel Green High School in its 11-0 win over Lawrence County. The Trojans slugged two grand-slam home runs to tie the AHSAA state single-game team record shared by four others.
Haven Hester slugged a grand slam in the first inning and teammate Mackenzie Newcomb slugged a game-ending grand slam in the fifth inning to close out the win. Newcomb allowed one hit and struck out five to get the pitching win.
    Hoover hit two grand slams in a 15-5 win over Pisgah in 2008. Springville socked two versus St. Clair County in a 14-2 win in 2011; Central-Florence slugged two to beat Ardmore 16-1 in that same year; and Winfield had two grand slams in a 13-0 win over Montgomery Catholic at the 2013 state tournament at Lagoon Park.

In the Clutch
Tripled and scored twice in a 7-5 championship game win over Wilson to give Hayden (16-1) the TimesDaily Classic tournament title at Florence. Teammate Gracie Benton also had a triple and two runs scored for the Wildcats. Hayden also had wins over Brooks, Austin and Riverdale (TN).  Wilson (19-2) had wins over Brooks and Florence twice to reach the finals.
ASHLEY WELLINGTON, DESHLER: Slugged a walk-off grand slam to highlight a five-run rally in a 7-5 over Mars Hill Bible at the TimesDaily Classic.
BAILEY BROWNING, WEST LIMESTONE: Slugged two home runs and had three RBIs in a 7-6 win over Falkville.

In other top performances reported:
LEANNA JOHNSON, BRANTLEY: Struck out 17 in a 4-0 shutout win over Pleasant Home. She collected a double at the plate.
ANNABELLE WIDRA, SPAIN PARK: Out-dueled Daphne’s MaKenna Pierce to win the championship game 1-0. Widra allowed two hits and struck out eight. Pierce allowed just one hit in the setback.
MADISON HOLTZAPFEL, THOMPSON: Tossed a no-hitter in the finals to beat Calera 5-1 for the Calera Invitational tourney title. She allowed on unearned run, one walk and struck out three.
SYDNEY SIMPSON, ETOWAH: Hurled two wins and also picked up two saves as Etowah went 4-0 to win the Etowah Invitational tourney. Kacie Byrd got the win in the finals as the Blue Devils beat Ashville 2-1. Simpson hurled the final two innings striking out three.
GEORGIA HUGHES, MONTEVALLO: Hurled two shutout wins allowing only two hits and striking out 17. She also collected five hits, including a double and homer, for six RBIs.
MOLLY COBB, HEWITT-TRUSSVILLE: Went 3-0 with wins over Moody, Daphne and Jasper, striking out 16 and allowing no earned runs. She also hit .438 with a team high eight RBIs.
TAYLOR BRADLEY, DOTHAN: Hurled a five-inning no-hitter with six strikeouts for the Tigers.
KENNEDY CRONAN, DAPHNE: Was 11-of-26 with four doubles, three homers and six RBIs as the Trojans (19-7) posted a 7-2 record for the week. The Trojans were 5-2 to finish second at the Oxford Spring Sting tourney. Pitcher Makenna Pierce (14-2) went 5-0 with 28 strikeouts in 30 innings. She allowed just 10 hits and no earned runs.
STEPHANIE SCHOONOVER, REHOBETH: The Rebels (16-7) of Coach Summer Chandler won six straight games to win the Dothan High/Terry Collins Memorial Tournament with Schoonover allowing no hits through four innings in the finals. She finished with a two-hitter and five strikeouts to beat Geneva 7-0.  Rehobeth won earlier games over Charles Henderson 7-3, G.W. Long 3-1, Cottonwood 16-0, G.W. Long 7-2 and Eufaula 4-2. Blake Gibson had two hits and four RBIs to lead Rehobeth’s offensive effort. The Rebels had back-to-back-to-back homers to plate seven runs in the first inning of their 9-2 win over G.W. Long.  Chasilyn Sawyers slugged a three-run blast, followed by Macie Cross and Honor Slayback with solo home runs.
BROOKLYN WALLACE, HARTSELLE: Slugged a homer and drove in five runs as Hartselle beat Elmore County in a spring break tourney game at Gulf Shores.
KATIE JONES, DECATUR HERITAGE: Collected a triple, double and single to drive in four runs in a 10-2 win over Woodville. Teammate Abby Terry also had three hits with a homer and three RBIs.
RAEGAN CLEM, WEST LIMESTONE: Had a homer and four RBIs in West Limestone’s 7-6 win over Falkville, added two hits, three runs scored and two RBIs in a 13-0 win over Cherokee and collected a double and two singles and one RBI in a 10-1 victory over Whitesburg Christian.
SHANNON CASSIDY, SHEFFIELD: Had two hits and two RBIs in the championship game to beat Covenant Christian 8-3 to win the Eagle Classic tournament. The Bulldogs
also beat Vina 12-1, Hackleburg 17-0 and Covenant Christian 5-4 to go 4-0 in the tourney.
ALLISON HAND, COLBERT HEIGHTS: Had a grand slam in a 9-0 win over Belgreen and Caroline Clark socked two homers to drive in five runs in an 8-2 win over Hamilton in the Red Bay Classic tournament. Emma James also had a three-run homer in an 11-3 win over Red Bay. Colbert Heights (16-0) remained unbeaten after the three wins.
LAUREN HASKINS, THOMPSON: Had a big week with seven home runs, four doubles, and a triple as the Lady Warriors outscored seven opponents 70-6 for the week, including winning the Calera Softball Invitational. She was 18-of-27 overall and was perfect on seven stolen-base attempts.
TORIE DENKERS, OAK MOUNTAIN: Had three home runs and 10 RBIs in a win over Cullman and finished with four homers on the week.
ABBY WILLIAMS, PROVIDENCE CHRISTIAN: Had three hits, including a three-run homer, and finished with five RBIs in a 14-4 win over Ashford. Twelve hitters had at least one hit for PCA.
LAKYN PRATT, ARITON: Slugged two home runs and two doubles to drive in six runs as Ariton downed Zion Chapel 20-2. Hannah Hughes also contributed a grand slam to highlight a 16-run outburst in the top of the fourth inning.
GABBY STAGNER, FAITH ACADEMY: Hit a grand slam homer in the fourth inning to lead Faith Academy to an 18-0 four-inning win over St. Paul’s Episcopal. The Rams and four homers in the game with Tempest Hebert hitting two and Taylor Robinson hitting one.

Bullard Steals Home to Lift Dadeville Past Reeltown

     MONTGOMERY – Dadeville High School senior infielder Tal Bullard has been practicing stealing home all season. Last week, he put that practice to the ultimate test. Standing on third base with the game tied in the top of the eighth inning versus Reeltown, Bullard raced toward home plate as the Rebels pitcher delivered a pitch.
      The steal from third in his prep career was perfectly executed with him sliding in under the tag giving the Tigers a 6-5 lead and the win, said Dadeville Coach Kyle Caldwell. It was the first home-plate steal attempt in the 5-foot-8, 120-pound speedster’s prep career.
      Bullard told the Alexander City Outlook, “I’ve done it once or twice in practice, but it was just a chance we had to take.”
      Reeltown had tied the game at 5-5 in the bottom of the seventh inning scoring three runs on one hit, four walks and one hit-by-pitch. That set up the steal attempt in the top of the eighth. Dadeville retired the side in the bottom of the inning to seal the win.
      The rare steal edged out a strong hitting performance last week by unbeaten Coosa Christian’s Jackson Justus, who s
lugged a bases-loaded double to clear the bases in the bottom of the first inning to tie the Conquerors’ game with Collinsville at 3-3. That jump-started Coosa Christian (14-0) to an 8-4 win.
      Collinsville scored three runs in the top of the first – the first time CCA has trailed all season. The double extended Justus’ current hitting streak to nine games. The Conquerors took the lead for good on Caiden Lipscomb’s two-RBI double in the third inning. Justus also pitched a three-hitter and struck out 13 in a 3-0 win over Cedar Bluff.
J.R. REYNOLDS, OPELIKA: The Texas A&M signee hurled a three-hitter and struck out 10 in a 1-0 win over Saraland at the East Alabama Classic.
The Auburn signee struck out 17 in a 3-2 win over Class 7A Smiths Station at the East Alabama Classic.
GABE SHEPARD, FAITH ACADEMY: Pitched the final two outs to notch the save in a 3-2 win over Desoto (MS) and then picked up another save in a 2-0 victory over Westmoore (OK) at the Battle of the Beach Classic in Biloxi. He also had two doubles in the win.
JEREMY BEVIS, CENTRAL-FLORENCE: Poke a three-run homer in the top of the seventh inning in a 5-4 come-from-behind win over Phil Campbell. He finished with two hits and four RBIs.
JOHN RICE, UMS-WRIGHT: Slapped a two-run single in the top of the seventh to tie the game as UMS-Wright rallied for fourth runs in the inning to edge Mary Montgomery 12-11. Rice finished with four RBIs.
BRYANT DAVIES, MARBURY: Bryant Davies’ two-out bases-loaded single down the third-base line in the final inning drove in the winning run as Marbury beat Stanhope Elmore 4-3.
HOUSTON GRISSOM, DESHLER: Singled in the winning run in the bottom of the eighth inning as the Tigers edged East Lawrence 9-7.
JACKSON DUKE, ALABAMA CHRISTIAN: Had three hits, including a single to drive in the game-winning run in the Eagles’ 7-6 win over Jemison.
THOMAS FAIN, GENEVA: Capped a 10-9 comeback with a two-out double to drive in the tying and go-ahead runs in the seventh inning. The Panthers lost the first game 5-1 and trailed 6-0 in the nightcap before rallying to win.

Other outstanding performances reported include:
DYLAN McFARLAND, SARALAND: Slugged a three-run homer and two-run double for five RBIs in a 10-2 win over Hartselle at the East Alabama Classic. The Spartans (13-8) also beat defending 6A state champion Helena 12-4 thanks to Brett Nazat’s three hits and three RBIs.
RETT FILES, GULF SHORES: Hurled a one-hitter, walked one and struck out four to beat area foe Robertsdale 2-0.
ALEX MURRAY, BAKER   : Hurled a five-inning perfect game to beat Foley 12-0. He struck out three in facing the minimum 15 batters.
JONATHAN McKITT, PARK CROSSING: Struck out 16 in a seven-inning no-hitter versus Lee-Montgomery and also had three hits himself.
COLE HENRY, FLORENCE: Tossed a no-hitter to bet Haleyville 4-0. He hurled 56 strikes in 72 pitches to strike out 10 and walked none. The Falcons scored all four runs in the fifth inning.
EASTON WILLIAMSON, AUSTIN: Had two triples, scored two runs and had two RBIs as Austin downed Columbia 12-1.
DAVID BOUTWELL, SHEFFIELD: Was 4-for-4 hitting with three RBIs and two runs scored in a 13-1 win over Covenant Christian.
ALEX BURROUGHS, RED BAY: Collected four hits and scored three runs in Red Bay’s 17-9 win over Colbert County. He also had two hits and four RBIs in an 18-15 loss to Belmont.
BRYCE PALMER, WATERLOO: Drove in six runs with three hits in a 17-0 win over Frank Hughes. He slugged a grand-slam homer in the win and also scored three runs. Palmer had two RBIs in a 13-0 win in the first game of the doubleheader to finish with eight RBIs.
RUDY FERNANDEZ, RUSSELLVILLE: Hurled a two-hit shutout with six strikeouts in a 1-0 win over Lawrence County in game one of a doubleheader sweep. Caden Parker, who drove in the game’s only run with a sacrifice fly, pitched five shutout innings in game two and Jaret Ward hurled two shutout innings as the defending Class 5A state champions beat the Red Devils again, 1-0. The Golden Tigers’ staff hurled 14 scoreless innings on the day. Noah Gist’s single in the fifth inning drove in the winning run in the winning run in game two.
ALEX NEWTON, LAUDERDALE COUNTY: Had a triple in the third inning to ignite a 13-run rally as Lauderdale County beat Elkmont 14-2. Newton finished with two hits and five RBIs.
BRAYDEN BERRYMAN, HATTON: Collected a double and homer to drive in five runs as the Hornets beat East Lawrence 12-2.
DYLAN RAY, BOB JONES: Slugged his second grand slam of the season and finished with three hits and six RBIs as the Patriots (17-4) beat Brooks 11-5.He also homered in a 16-4 win over Ardmore and drove in two runs.
BRADLEY HULIN, HAZEL GREEN: The lead-off hitter had a homer and double to drive in two runs as Trojans beat Huntsville 9-3 in the first game of a twin bill sweep. Winning pitcher Isaiah Magwood allowed no earned runs and struck out six and slugged a home run and four RBIs in the 7-2 victory in the second game.
ADAM BRAGG, WESTMINTER CHRISTIAN: Slugged a grand slam in an 18-16 win over Wagoner (OK) and had a double and two RBIs in an 8-4 win over East Limestone.
JOSH HALL, HOMEWOOD: Was 9-of-14 hitting with a homer, two RBIs and 11 runs scored for the week. He also stole five bases versus John Carroll, to up his career total to 168.
RYAN TOMLIN, ARITON: Went 4-for-4 with a single, two doubles, a triple and seven RBIs as Ariton downed Abbeville 23-2. He was also hit by a pitch. The Purple Cats won game two of the doubleheader 22-0 with Maddux Herring socking a homer, triple and double and drove in five runs.
JORDAN COACHMAN, COTTONWOOD: Struck out 15 and scattered five hits as the Bears beat Ashford 8-3. Cottonwood managed seven runs in the top of the sixth inning to erase a 3-1 deficit. Coachman also had a double and RBI single.
SCOTT ELGIN, HOOVER: Faced the minimum 21 batters in 5-0 shutout win over Cullman. He allowed one hit and struck out three.
CONNOR MILES, CLAY-CHALKVILLE: Was 7-of-10 in a doubleheader sweep over Minor and a win over Locust Fork. He finished with nine RBIs.
DYLAN REGISTER, G.W. LONG: Hurled a one-hit shutout and struck out 10 as the Rebels beat Slocomb 11-0 in the first game of a doubleheader. H had two hits and an RBI and followed with a home run, double and single as G.W. Long completed the sweep winning 11-1 in game two. Matt Snell also homered in game two.
CHRIS THORNTON, EUFAULA: Went 3-for-3 with two home runs and six RBIs as the Tigers beat Headland 14-4. He also picked up the win. Thornton added one hit and two RBIs in the second game, a 13-4 loss to the Rams.

Briarwood Extends Win Streak to 10 With Metro Tournament Championship

MONTGOMERY – Briarwood Christian (12-2-1) extended its current boys’ soccer winning streak to 10 in a row with a 4-0 victory over Shades Valley in th3 finals of the Metro B Division Tournament championship match.
    Hamilton Bowen earned MVP honors posting seven goals and one assist in four tourney wins.
    The Class 5A Lions, coached by Shawn Brower, opened the season 2-2-1 – giving up 10 goals in the five matches. Since then, Briarwood has outscored opponents 59-3. In the Metro tourney, the Lions outscored opponents 17-1. In addition to the win over Shades Valley, the Lions posted a 4-0 victory over Leeds, a 6-0 win over previously unbeaten McAdory and a 3-1 win over Pinson Valley.
   Hoover (12-1-3) won the Metro A division with four wins with Dylan Stern earning MVP honors. The Bucs beat Oak Mountain 1-0 in a match that went to the sudden death shootout.
   In other top performances reported:

Posted five goals in a 7-2 win over Hamilton (TN) at the Baylor Invitational Tourney at Chattanooga. Collinsville (10-1-2) also tied Chattanooga Christian 2-2 and Hardin Valley Academy 3-3. Avila finished the weekend with seven goals.
PIRMIN BLATTMANN, MOUNTAIN BROOK: Had three goals and an assist as the Spartans tied George Mason (VA) 3-3, lost 3-2 to Greeneville (TN) and beat Murfreesboro (TN) 1-0 at the Smokey Mountain Classic at Gatlinburg.
KELEN LEBLANC, ENTERPRISE: Scored four goals and teammate Sam Mazariegos added three goals and an assist in the Wildcats’ 9-1 win over Andalusia.
MARLON TAITE, WETUMPKA: Scored three first-half goals as the Indians held on for a 3-2 win over Tallassee.
IRVIN RODRIQUEZ, PELHAM: Scored two goals and had an assist as the Panthers beat Thompson to win the Border War trophy.
KELVIN TOWNSEND, WOODLAWN: The goalkeeper had 15 saves in a shutout win over Holy Family and 11 saves in a win over Shelby County. He allowed just one goal all week.

Scored both goals for her team in a 2-0 win over Marbury.
SARA LYNAM, GRISSOM: Scored late on a penalty kick to lift the Tigers to a 1-0 win over Hewitt-Trussville.
KAILEY LITTLEFORD, CHELSEA: Had three goals in a 5-0 win over Pelham and a goal and assist in a 4-0 win over Prattville.
MIMI DAVIS, ALTAMONT: Scored four goals in a 10-0 win over Holy Family.
Scored four goals as the Eagles beat Eufaula 10-0.

Alabama HS Sports Hall of Fame Inducts 11 into Class of 2018

     MONTGOMERY – Eleven major contributors to prep athletics in Alabama were inducted into the 28th class of the Alabama High School Sports Hall of Fame Monday night at the banquet held at the Renaissance Montgomery Hotel and Convention Center.
     Inducted were: (football coaches) John Mothershed, Deshler; Randy Ragsdale, Trinity Presbyterian; Jerome Tate, Loachapoka; (basketball coaches) Ricky Allen, Brewer; Obadiah Threadgill III, Notasulga; and Ed Wood, now deceased, who was elected in the “Old Timer” category from Carver-Montgomery; (volleyball coach) Ann Schilling, Bayside Academy; (baseball coaches) William Booth, Hartselle; Al Rauls, Buckhorn, who also coached softball; (administrator) Greg Brewer, AHSAA; and (official) long-time soccer official Joe Manjone.
   Sponsors of the Hall of Fame program are the Alabama High School Athletic Directors & Coaches Association (AHSADCA) and the AHSAA. The corporate sponsors include Alabama Power, ALFA, Cadence Bank, Coca-Cola, Encore Rehabilitation, Jack’s, Russell Athletic, TeamIP and Wilson Sporting Goods.
     Rauls delivered a poignant acceptance address for the Class of 2018, thanking those who helped guide them along the way.
    Veteran sportscaster Jeff Shearer emceed the banquet attended by more than 700. The Goshen High School NFHS School Broadcast Program live-streamed the banquet over NFHS Network under the guidance of Stephanie Snyder.     The first class was inducted in 1991. These 11 new inductees will run the total enshrined into the Alabama High School Sports Hall of Fame to 343.
     The first class was inducted in 1991. These 11 new inductees will run the total enshrined into the Alabama High School Sports Hall of Fame to 343.
       A profile of each inductee:      
RICKY ALLEN: Allen, 62, graduated from Brewer High School in Somerville in 1973, earned his college degree at Auburn University and then returned to Morgan County in 1977 where he remained as a teacher and coach for 34 years. He served in various assistant coaching roles at Brewer and head-coaching roles at nearby Cotaco and Union Hill junior high schools before taking over the girls’ program at Brewer in 1985.
    He became Brewer High School’s girls’ head basketball coach in 1985 where he remained through 2015. Allen compiled a 30-year record of 604-272 with one state title (Class 5A in 2012) and one state runner-up (2009). His teams reached the State Championships five times, made 15 Northwest Regional tournament appearances winning five times. His teams won 17 Morgan County championships.
    Brewer also served in various other head-coaching roles including volleyball and softball. In high school he was a member of the school’s first graduating class helping Brewer reach the state boys’ basketball tournament in 1973 for the only time in school history while averaging 13 points and 12 rebounds.
    A local church leader, he has taught Sunday School for 25 years and served as a member of the Board of Directors for the Fellowship of Christian Athletes (FCA).
Booth, 73, a veteran of 52 years in education, got a late start in coaching at Hartselle High School. However, he made up for lost time quickly. Over the last 30 years he has become the state’s all-time career wins leader for baseball, compiling a 1,025-431 record with eight state championships and three runner-up trophies. 
    He coached his first times on a field he described as a “cow pasture” and but now plays and practices at Sparkman Park, one of the finest high school facilities in the nation. He has seen 101 of his former players sign college scholarships and eight played professionally. Two, Steven Woodard and Chad Girodo, reached the major league. He was recognized by the Alabama State Senate and his hometown last May for his career achievements at a special ceremony at Sparkman Park.
     He served 10 years as a little league coach, leading teams to two state titles and one state runner-up. He graduated in 1962 from Morgan County High School and got his undergraduate and masters’ degrees from Athens State and Alabama A&M. Teaching advanced math for almost 50 years, Booth served as interim Superintendent of Education in the summer of 2017 and is now serving as assistant superintendent while continuing to coach baseball.

Brewer, 61, rose from the ranks of officiating to become the AHSAA’s Director of Officials while serving as an assistant director from 1985-2016. A 1975 graduate of Bradshaw High School in Florence, he earned his college degree from the University of North Alabama in 1980 and a master from the University of Alabama in 1983.
   He began officiating with the AHSAA in 1976. While at UA he became active as a contest official rising to supervisor of intramural officials in 1982. He also served as official scorer for basketball at UA for 22 years.
   As Director of Officials with the AHSAA, Brewer served on various NFHS rules committees including serving as chairman of the NFHS Baseball Rules Committee from 2000-2006. He also served on the NFHS Football Rules Committee from 1998-2016 and also served on the NFHS Football Manual Committee and Football Rule Editorial Committee.
   An innovator who worked diligently to improve officiating in the AHSAA, he developed the AHSAA district director program, the AHSAA Pitch Count Rule for baseball, which has been lauded as one of the best in the nation, and created a sports officiating course approved by the ASDE that is now being taught in high schools that will serve as a recruiting tool to help recruit future officials.
   He also served as a Boys State staff member from 1981-92, was the NFOSA state director from 1990-2001 and was on the Jimmy Hitchcock Selection Committee for nine years.
   The NFHS honored him with the Section 3 Citation Award for his contributions in 2006 and received the Alabama Baseball Coaches Association Distinguished Service Award in 2012. He co-founded the Alabama Sports Officials Foundation in 2016.
A native of Pennsylvania, Joe, 75, has served as been a soccer official for the past 58 years.  He became the AHSAA’s soccer rules interpreter in 1991, a position he still holds. His work with soccer officiating in Alabama has helped the sport flourish over the last 30 years.
   He joined the NFHS Soccer Rules Committee as the AHSAA representative in 2000 and has been the AHSAA state soccer championships officials’ coordinator since its inception in 1991.
    He received the AHSAA Distinguished Service Award for Officiating in 2010, was selected the NFHS Sports Official Contributor of the Year in 2012 and was inducted into the NISOA Hall of Fame in 2013.
   A native of Pennsylvania, he graduated from Black Creek Township High School in 1959 and Penn State University in 1963. He earned several post-graduate degrees from Penn State and the University of Georgia. He came to Alabama in 1980 where he worked through 1996 with the University of Alabama-Huntsville as Director of Sports and Fitness. He has spent most of his professional life working in some capacity in college education and served as president of Waldorf College from 2009-11.

JOHN MOTHERSHED: Mothershed, 54, served as head football coach at Deshler High School from 1995-2013 and was athletic director from 1995-2007. His teams compiled a 201-53 record during that span. Prior to becoming head coach, he served on Coach Tandy Gereld’s staff for eight years. Gerelds was inducted into the AHSHOF last year.
   The Tigers won state titles in 1998 and 1999 under Mothershed’s direction and reached the Super 6 state finals in 2003, 2004, 2005, 2007 and 2010. His teams compiled a 49-17 playoff record in 19 appearances and was 102-13 in region games. Eleven of his teams won 10 or more games.
   A graduate of Sheffield High School (1981) and the University of North Alabama (1985), he has been active in the Alabama High School Athletic Directors & Coaches Association (AHSADCA) serving as president in 2004 and as a vice president from 2001-03. He has been inducted into the Colbert County Sports Hall of Fame.

RANDY RAGSDALE: Ragsdale, 60, served as head football coach at Trinity Presbyterian High School in Montgomery from 1989-2017. The Wildcats compiled a 242-86 record during that span with a 45-game regular-season winning streak from 2000-05. His 2003 team won the Class 4A state championship going undefeated at 15-0.
    His teams reached the state playoffs in 25 of the 28 seasons and compiled a 116-23 region record. He began his coaching career as an assistant coach in Georgia and joined the Northview staff in Dothan in 1985.As defensive coordinator, he helped the Cougars win a state crown in 1985.
    Ragsdale coached in the 1997 and 2004 North-South All-Star Games, was head coach in 2010 and was named ASWA Coach of the Year in 2003.  He currently serves as a board member of the District 3 Fellowship of Christian Athletes and received the Herman L. Scott Distinguished Service Award in 2017 for his faith-based coaching leadership.
   He coached a team of Alabama all-stars in the Down Under Bowl in Australia in 1999 and 2000. As a player he earned All-America honors as an offensive lineman at Jacksonville State and played in the NCAA Division II championship game in 1978.
   The Rockdale County (GA) graduate attended Jacksonville State University on football scholarship graduating in 1979. He earned his masters from JSU in 1984. He and his family attend Ray Thorington Road Baptist Church.

ALVIN RAULS: Rauls, 62, has served in various capacities as a high school teacher and coach at Madison County and Huntsville city schools. As a baseball coach at he guided New Hope to the 1992 Class 3A state baseball crown and his 1990 and 1994 teams finished runner-up. With stops at Sparkman, Butler and Bob Jones, his teams won over 350 games. He moved to Buckhorn in 2007 where he has coached softball teams to more than 300 victories over the last 11 years. He guided the Lady Bucks to the state championship in 2017. He is only the second coach in AHSAA history to coach state titles in both sports.
  He coached American Legion baseball for many years winning numerous state titles.
  Rauls has also served on the AHSAA District 8 Board and Legislative Council and on the AHSAA Central Board of Control. He graduated from Monroe High School in Albany (GA) in 1972 and from Florida A&M, where he was on baseball scholarship, in 1977. 

ANN SCHILLING: Schilling, 53, who was named the NFHS National Volleyball Coach of the Year in 2010, has had an incredible run as head volleyball coach at Bayside Academy. Through the 2017 season, her teams have won 16 straight state championships and 23 titles overall. She has more than 1,400 wins which places her among the leaders in the nation, and has been named State Coach of the Year by the Birmingham News five times (1992, 2000, 2007, 2011, 2012.
   The founded the Eastern Shore Volleyball Club, Schilling was inducted into the Bayside Academy Sports Hall of Fame in 2004 and Mobile Sports Hall of Fame in 2017. Among her numerous honors was receiving the R.L. Lindsay Service Award for volleyball (2006), the John L. Finley Award for Superb Achievement (2004 and 2014) and the prepvolleyball.com Co-National coach of the year in 2009.
  Schilling graduated from McGill-Toolen Catholic High School in 1982 where she played volleyball for legendary coach Becky Dickinson, who is already inducted into the AHSHOF. Schilling got her college degree at Auburn in 1987.”
   She is a member of the American Volleyball Coaches Association and the AHSADCA. She is active in Christ the King Church.

JEROME TATE: Tate, 58, has spent almost his entire high school coaching career in East Central Alabama. After a one-year stint as head football coach at Keith High School in 1982-83, Tate moved to Lanett after two years as a college coach, and served the Panthers as head track coach and assistant football coach at Lanett through 1995.
   He became head football coach and athletic director at Loachapoka in 1997and remained in that capacity until he stepped down in 2017. His teams compiled a 152-98 record with four regional titles and played in the state playoffs in 17 of his 22 seasons, including 14 appearances in a row. Tate coached in the North-South All-Star Game in 1997 and 2010 and in the Alabama-Mississippi Game in 2005.
   He has been selected Opelika-Auburn News Coach of the Year, Montgomery Advertiser Coach of the Year, Alabama Football Coaches Association Coach of the Year and was inducted into the Alabama A&M Sports Hall of Fame in 2006.
   He received a Certificate of Commendation from the City of Lanett in 1995 and a Certificate of Commendation from the City of Huntsville in 2006.
   He coached numerous players who went to excel in college and three (Josh Evans, Kenny Sander and Tracy Brooks) that played professionally. Tate graduated from Selma High School in 1977 and Alabama A&M University in 1982, where he was an outstanding collegiate player.

Threadgill, 70, coached girls’ and boys’ basketball for 30 years including 22 at Notasulga High School – becoming one of the few coaches in AHSAA history to coach both teams to the state tournament. His boys won state titles in 1987 and 1992 and his girls’ team won a state title in 2001. He also coached two state runner-up teams and had nine Final Four appearances – including three in a row with his girls in 1995, 1996 and 1997. His teams combined to win more than 900 games. The gymnasium at Notasulga is named in his honor.
   He was named Class 1A State Coach of the Year for boys twice and for girls once and received six Opelika-Auburn area coach of the year awards for boys and girls.  He also had coaching stops at Tuskegee, D.C. Wolfe and Tuskegee Institute high schools.
   His family represents three generations in education and coaching with his father and mother career teachers, his brother Kenneth a teacher and coach and now his son, Obadiah IV serving as a teacher and coach at LaFayette. Obadiah, at Notasulga, and Kenneth, at Livingston, became the first brothers to coach tams to the state championship game (1992) in the same year.
   Threadgill, who served in the Army with a tour of duty in Viet Nam, graduated from Sumter County Training High School in 1965 and Tuskegee University in 1970. He completed his masters at Auburn in 1980.

Wood, now deceased, coached at two schools in his teaching/coaching career, Marengo County (Dixons Mills) and Carver-Montgomery. Born on New Year’s Day in 1927, he was in his coaching prime when succumbed to cancer in 1980 just eight days after his 53rd birthday.
    He made an impact quickly on the students of the schools where he worked. He coached all sports at Marengo County from 1954-59 with much success in football and basketball.
   He then moved home to Montgomery become head boys’ basketball coach at Carver, where he remained until 1979. He compiled a 209-99 record from 1959-69 and finished his 13-year span with 310 wins. His teams won district championships in the AIAA from 1961-64 and reached the state tourney in ’64. When the AIAA merged with the AHSAA in 1968, Wood continued his success with a region title and trip to the state tourney in 1969’s first with all schools competing. His Wolverines also reached the state tourney four more times in the next five years.
    He recruited a young coach Dan Lewis to become his assistant coach and hand-picked Lewis to be his success when he stepped down. Lewis, credits Wood’s mentoring and example for his successes. Lewis, how retired, has already been inducted into the AHSHOF.
   The gymnasium at Carver is named in Wood’s honor.
   The Montgomery native graduated from Alabama State Laboratory School in 1945 and Alabama State University in 1954. He earned his masters from ASU in 1956. He attended Dexter Avenue King Memorial Church where he was a leader and community volunteer.

Carver Coach Edward Wood’s Impact, Legacy is Still Strong after Four Decades

                               By Bill Plott

                                                         AHSAA Historian
           Veteran Carver-Montgomery High School boys’ basketball coach Edward Wood lost his battle with cancer much too young. However, his legacy and impact still live on in his hometown of Montgomery.
           The Carver gymnasium bears his name, and students who attended the school during his tenure in the 1960s and 1970s will forever carry his memory in their hearts. And so will the Alabama High School Sports Hall of Fame. Coach Wood is being inducted into the Hall’s Class of 2018.
          Wood attended high school at Alabama State Laboratory High School in Montgomery, graduating in 1945. He played basketball for Coach Hubert “Prof” Lockhart, a 2003 Hall of Fame inductee. Wood was named to the All-Tournament team in the 1944 AIAA state tournament.

After graduation, he moved across campus to Alabama State College where he would receive his bachelor’s degree in 1954. His college career, however, had been deferred for three years while he served in the United States Navy. He later returned to ASU again to earn a master’s degree.

His first of just two high school coaching/teaching job was at Dixon’s Mills in Marengo County where he coached and taught math. He was there from 1954-59.

In 1959 he moved back home to Carver High School in Montgomery as math teacher and coach. For the first 10 years, his teams played in the Alabama Interscholastic Athletic Association. His record at Carver during that period was 209-99. The 1963 team was runner-up in the state tournament. In 1968 the AIAA was merged with Alabama High School Athletic Association and he finished his career in the unified organization.

In 11 years in the AHSAA, Wood’s record was 164-114. There were five consecutive 20-plus win seasons, including four state tournament appearances.

Coach Dan Lewis, Wood’s longtime assistant and successor at Carver, said those AIAA teams were “some of the best-coached in the state.” When the merger came, Carver played in the three consecutive AHSAA state tournaments.
          Lewis further recalled: “Everything I know and have experienced with Coach Wood is positive, uplifting and inspiring. I had the rewarding opportunity to work and serve as Coach Wood’s assistant for eight years. What an honor and privilege to work under a coach who was well organized and believed in structure and organization.
           “The success I had as head coach at Carver, following Coach Wood as my mentor, enabled Carver to win back-to-back state championships in 1982 and 1983. I bestow Coach Wood a lot of credit for helping me to develop my own coaching philosophy. Coach Wood believed in developing character and discipline in the lives of every young man whom he coached. All of his team members exuded extreme character and sportsmanship.

“Coach Wood affected the lives of many young people on the west side of Montgomery. Some of the young men whose lives he touched went on to become doctors, lawyers, educators, businessmen, political officials, coaches and professional basketball players. I am immensely proud to have been influenced by Coach Edward L. Wood.”

Christine E. Williams and Dorothy Wright Pleasant, writing on behalf of the Class of 1965, said:

“The class of 1965 had a special relationship with Coach Edward Wood. He came to Carver in the fall of 1959, and we started seventh grade in junior high school. Therefore, the nomination journey has been a time of many reflections on Coach Wood and his lasting influence on our young lives.

“Coach had chances for advancement but turned down colleges time and time again to remain at Carver. Why? We believe the root of all his actions was his dedication to his players. His most important concern was the welfare of his players as future men in the community. Coach instilled in his players and mathematics students the values of an education, work ethic and community involvement.

“For those of us that attended Carver in the ‘60s and ‘70s, Coach Wood’s voice is still resonant. We recall many inspirational and motivational speeches he gave to the student body at pep rallies that kept us calm during the turbulent start of integration.”

Coach Wood died in 1980 at just age 54 after a four-year battle with cancer. He had already turned his coaching duties over to Lewis, his personal choice to take over the program. Lewis would go on to lead Carver to a then school record 30- and 31-win seasons. For the last 32 years, Wood’s family has awarded the Edward L. Wood Scholarship to the most outstanding Carver basketball player. In 1982 the school gymnasium was dedicated as the Edward L. Wood Gymnasium. His son Ed went on to play college basketball at Auburn University.

Another former student, U. S. Army Maj (ret) Abraham McCall Jr., was very specific about Wood’s influence in his life:

“Coach Wood became part of my life at a most pivotal point. Had it not been for the Lord, my parents and Coach Wood, I honestly don’t know where I would be. The Lord gave me grace and mercy. My parents game me my birth rights.

 “Coach Wood gave me an opportunity to attend college. He wrote, called and carried me to visit with the staff at Mississippi Valley State College for me to attend their school. For the things that he did, I am forever grateful.

“He did more than just rolling basketballs out on the court for me. He instilled those things in me that would propel me to become the person that I am today. He taught me about discipline, hard work, and sacrifice. Other things that I learned from him were leadership, commitment, service and family.

“All of the aforementioned have helped me have two long and successful careers. One was 22 years in the military, of which I retired as a field grade officer. The second career was that of public educator, of which I retired as a high school administrator. As you can see, Coach Wood gave me and others immeasurable opportunities at having a chance at success in life.”

Alabama-Mississippi Boys All-Star Game Mississippi 127, Alabama 90

   CLINTON, MS  -- Mississippi’s All-Stars jumped out to an 11-point lead by halftime and Alabama’s All-Stars never recovered as the hosts evened the 28-year series at 14 wins each with a record-setting 127-90 triumph at A.E. Wood Coliseum on the Mississippi College campus.
    The 127 points broke 24-year old record set by Mississippi in 1994 at the same location. The hosts won that year 123-111.
     The bright spot for Alabama, coached by Plainview’s Robi Coker and Cordova’s Heath Burns, was the play guard Jamari Blackmon, who was named Alabama’s MVP. He scored 22 points, 11 in each half, and handed out four assists. His performance couldn’t slow the Mississippi squad, however.
        Alabama was just 5-of-41 on 3-pointers but was 21-of-22 at the foul line. Blackmon was a perfect 10-of-10.  Diante Wood of Sacred Heart Catholic added 11 points, Jared Sherfield of Paul Bryant, Travarus Carroll of Huffman, Anquavious Pollard of Lanett and Jayce Willingham of Cordova had nine points each. Haleyville’s Logan Dye had eight points and seven rebounds.
       The home team led 57-46 at the half and outscored Alabama 70-44 in the second half. Everything seemed to work for Mississippi, coached by Kim Windham of Port Gibson and Darrin Chancellor of Florence.  Their team was 15-of-29 from the 3-point arc with DeAnthony Tipler sinking 5-of-9 on the way to 21 points and Mississippi MVP honors. Mississippi out-rebounded Alabama 57-4e with 6-foot-6 Garrison Wade of St. Andrews clearing 11 and Tyron Brewer of Meridian grabbing nine. Meridian guard Miles Miller was also impressive scoring 19 points, sinking five treys and handing some dazzling assists. A total of seven players cracked double figures for Mississippi.
    The win was the third in a row for Mississippi. 

Alabama-Mississippi Girls All-Star Game Alabama 109, Mississippi 96

   CLINTON, MS  -- Alabama’s All-Stars jumped out early and never trailed en route to a 109-96 win over Mississippi in the 28th annual Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Classic girls’ game Friday night at Wood Gymnasium on the Mississippi College campus.
   The boys’ game was underway at 7 p.m.
    Lee-Montgomery guard Zipporah Broughton scored 16 points, had six rebounds, three assists and three steals to earn MVP honors to Alabama. The visitors’ 109 points was the third time for Alabama to go over the 100-point mark in the 28-game series which dates back to 1991 and was the second most points scored overall. The win evened the series to 14-14.  Alabama won in 2004 by a 114-78 score and won 105-84 in 1998. The win also snapped a two-game winning streak by Mississippi in the series.
    Broughton, a Rutgers signee, scored 11 points in the second half.
    Coaches Tim Miller of Hazel Green and Ricky Austin of Spring Garden saw six players score in double figures with Ajah Wayne of Ramsay leading with 17, followed by Broughton’s 16, Hannah Barber of Homewood and Karleigh Sledge of Deshler with 15 each, Eboni Williams of Hoover with 13, and Brooke Hampel with 10.  Barber was 4-of-5 from the 3-point arc, Broughton sank three and Williams was 4-of-4 at the foul line.  Williams also had nine rebounds, Wayne had nine and Jeremcya Harris of Blount had six. Wayne and Barber each had four assists, Williams and Broughton, three apiece.
    Mississippi was led by Chyna Leigh Allen of Harrison Central. She scored as game-high 27  points and sank 5-of-9 3-point goals. Mississippi game MVP was guard Tabreea Gandy of Starkville, who has seven points and five assists. Kealy Wilson of Horn Lake added 11 points and Kayla Simmons of Brandon had 10 points and nine rebounds.


By Bob Gardner, Executive Director of the National Federation of State High School Associations and Steve Savarese, Executive Director of the Alabama High School Athletic Association.

Many parents are trying to live the dream through their sons and daughters – the dream of landing a college athletic scholarship by specializing in a sport year-round. Unfortunately, most of these dreams are never realized.

The odds of a sports scholarship paying for even a portion of a student’s college education are miniscule. 

The College Board, a not-for-profit organization comprised of 6,000 of the world’s leading educational institutions, reports that a moderate cost for college students who attend a public university in their state of residence is $25,290 per year. The annual cost at a private college averages $50,900.

Meanwhile, the most recent data from the NCAA reveals that the average Division I athletic scholarship is worth only $10,400.  More significantly, the same study shows that fewer than two percent of all high school athletes (1 in 54) ever wear the uniform of an NCAA Division I school.

Even if the dream is realized, parents likely will spend more money for club sports than they ever regain through college athletic scholarships. Thanks to the costs of club fees, equipment, summer camps, playing in out-of-state tournaments and private coaching, youth sports has become a $15 billion-per-year industry.

There is an option, and it’s a financially viable one: Encourage your sons and daughters to play sports at their high school.

In education-based high school sports, student-athletes are taught, as the term implies, that grades come first. The real-life lessons that students experientially learn offer insights into leadership, overcoming adversity and mutual respect that cannot be learned anywhere else. Unlike club sports, coaches in an education-based school setting are held accountable by the guiding principles and goals of their school district. And the cost of participating in high school sports is minimal in most cases. 

While there is a belief that the only way to get noticed by college coaches is to play on non-school travel teams year-round, many Division I football and basketball coaches recently have stated that they are committed to recruiting students who have played multiple sports within the high school setting.

In addition, by focusing on academics while playing sports within the school setting, students can earn scholarships for academics and other talents—skill sets oftentimes nurtured while participating in high school activities. These scholarships are more accessible and worth more money than athletic scholarships. While $3 billion per year is available for athletic scholarships, more than $11 billion is awarded for academic scholarships and other financial assistance.

Without a doubt, your sons and daughters will have more fun, make more friends and be better prepared for life beyond sport by participating in multiple sports and activities offered by the high school in your community. 

Carroll’s Adams Records 5 Assists as 13 Eagles Score 1 Goal Each in Soccer Win

    MONTGOMERY – Freshman Julia Adams scored one goal and had a five assists as the Lady Eagles beat Charles Henderson 13-0 last week. Her performance would be enough to shine the AHSAA spotlight on Coach Dana Langford’s strong program.
   However, the Lady Eagles had 13 different players score a goal in the contest with no player scoring more than one to set an AHSAA State girls’ single-match soccer record has thrust the program into this week’s AHSAA Soccer Spotlight.
    The ability of Julia Adams and teammate Samantha Adams, who had one goal and three assists, to find open teammates was a key as Joanna Paris, Alexus Long, Emily Hayes, Audrey Mecklenburg, Makayla Johnson, Lilly Vasquez, Kailey Owen, Jamey McDonald, Emilee Pedroza, Alayna Yarbrough and Victoria Jester scored one goal each.
The five assists by Julia Adams ranks second all-time in the AHSAA Soccer Record Book, found online at www.ahsaa.com. The record (7) was set by Amy Bayles of Mars Hill Bible in a match versus West Morgan in 2005. Carly Sims of Guntersville set the season record (38) for assists in 2018, and Natalie Mooney of Arab holds the AHSAA girls’ career record for assists (106), set from 2008-13.
     The AHSAA boys’ single-game record for assists (6) was set by Desmond Ibie of Murphy in 2013 versus Baldwin County and equaled by Dothah’s Ahkaim Walden in a 9-1 win over Charles Henderson in 2014.
      Coaches are encouraged to report top team or individual performances each week by Monday morning, 9 a.m., by emailing ringram@ahsaa.com

Captured the 100th victory of his boys’ soccer coaching career when the Raiders beat Huntsville rival Westminster Christian 2-0 last week. Tomlinson, in his seventh season, is now 100-37-15 with six trips to the AHSAA Final Four, five appearances in the state finals and two state titles.
     Other top performances reported last week included:

MALLORY SEARS, FAIRHOPE: Scored four goals in the second half to force a 4-4 tie into overtime and then scored the winning goal, her fifth of the match, in the extra period to give the Pirates a 5-4 win over Foley.
SAMANTHA KING, MARS HILL BIBLE: Had three goals and had an assist in the Panthers’ 4-0 win over Clements.
CLAIRE BORDEN, FLORENCE: Borden scored two goals in the Falcons’ 4-0 victory over Russellville.
LIZZIE HILL, VESTAVIA HILLS: Got free on a break-a-way in the second half to deliver the go-ahead goal in the Rebels’ 4-2 win over Oak Mountain. Senior Taylor Korn, who scored two goals, added a late goal to provide the final cushion.
SARA BURGREEN & TERESA MIGUEL, DECATUR: Each scored three goals in a 10-0 win over Columbia.
HELENA JANKOWSKI, WEST MORGAN: Posted three goals in a 5-2 win over Mars Hill Bible.
KYLEE BERNDT, WESTBROOK CHRISTIAN: Had two goals and two assists and teammate Mary Reid Goodwin also had two goals and two assists as Westbrook Christian downed Susan Moore 10-0.

ANGEL DELGADO, WEST MORGAN: Finished with four goals in a 10-0 win against Athens Bible.
NICK IBANEZ, HOOVER: Had a key second-half goal to spark a four-goal rally in a 4-0 win over John Carroll Catholic, and he followed with a game-winning goal at the 49th minute versus Vestavia Hills in a 2-1 victory.
COLE LITTLE, ST. PAUL’S EPISCOPAL: Had four goals in a 6-0 win over UMS-Wright to give him 27 goals scored already this season.

Struggling with his putting this season, Lee grabbed his dad’s old putter and saw marked improvement shooting even-par 72 to lead the Raiders to a 312-338 win over Providence Christian at Highland Oaks Golf Course last week.
 He recorded two birdies on the front side and made the turn at 2-under. He sank a 20-foot putt on a par 5 for a birdie to earn medalist honors.
Emmett Lee’s father probably won’t be getting his old putter back. Teammate Hal Dove shot 1-over 73, and PCA’s Thomas Ponder also shot a 73.

Was undefeated in three matches at the Weinacker Invitational tourney at Birmingham-Southern. She posted wins over Mountain Brook, UMS-Wright and Vestavia Hills and teamed with Katherine Scott to win at No. 1 doubles over UMS-Wright.

Obadiah Threadgill Legacy Stretches Four Generations with Sumter County family

                          By Bill Plott
                                          AHSAA Historian


        Retired Notasulga High School basketball coach Obadiah Threadgill III was born into a family of educators. Both of his parents were teachers, and his father, Obadiah Threadgill II, coached and officiated in the Sumter County area.
         In addition, his brother Kenneth Threadgill taught and coached basketball at Livingston High School, winning a state championship in 2003.  Another brother, Reginald Threadgill, is a longtime basketball official in the Jefferson County area.

          That legacy has now extended into a fourth generation. Obadiah’s wife Joyce is a career elementary school teacher. Their son, Obadiah Threadgill IV, the head boys’ basketball coach at LaFayette High School, has already coached a state championship team at LaFayette, and his wife Shernika is cheerleader coach.
          It all started with Obadiah Threadgill I, said Obadiah III, who has been selected to be enshrined into the Alabama High School Sports Hall of Fame’s Class of 2018. “He was the son of slaves,” he said, “and a God-fearing man who knew the importance of getting an education.”

          Pam Langford, Dadeville High School administrator and a former Notasulga teacher, in her letter nominating Threadgill for the Hall of Fame, said there is still another legacy.

“Athletics serve an important role in the lives of many young people,” Langford said. “Coach Threadgill has used his love of basketball and his coaching ability to give many student-athletes an opportunity to be successful. However, as a school principal, parent and friend, it is his character that I admire and appreciate the most! Not only did Coach Threadgill teach kids to be winners on the court, he taught them to be winners in life.
            “His examples of integrity, work ethic, perseverance and compassion were so important for our students. Now, thousands of his students and athletes are adults. It warms my heart to know that those characteristics have helped them be successful in life.”
           Langford said Threadgill’s influence didn’t top there.
           “I see [them] instilling those winning characteristics in their own children,” she said. “Coach Threadgill’s positive impact will go on forever.”
           Threadgill attend Sumter County Training School, graduating in 1965. He attended Tuskegee University, graduating in 1970. He later earned a master’s degree from Auburn University in 1980.

          A Vietnam veteran, Threadgill went into military service after his graduation from Tuskegee. He served from 1970-72. Out of the Army, he returned home to Sumter County and accepted the position of director of the Sumter County Head Start Center.

In 1973 he moved to Macon County, first as teacher and coach at Tuskegee Public Middle School from 1973-74, and then at Deborah C. Wolfe High School from 1974-77. From 1977-81 he held a similar position at Tuskegee Institute High School.

In 1981 he accepted the position of teacher and head basketball coach at Notasulga High School where he served through 2002.

Notasulga in the 1960s and 1970s was a town with difficult integration issues. Those issues were overcome by a community that came together. Macon County Board of Education member Karey Thompson recalled that situation in his letter.

“Dwight Sanderson and Buddy Knapp, along with Principal Robert Anderson, became legendary leaders at Notasulga, having navigated an uncharted journey of school desegregation in the early 1970s not only in the athletic program but also in academic achievement and positive community relations. In 1974 a television crew (BBC/England) visited the campus of NHS, recording the school’s story and later aired to a national and international audience, a documentary of Notasulga’s success.

“In Notasulga, Coach Threadgill is viewed much the same as Sanderson-Knapp-Anderson. If the Blue Devils had a Mt. Rushmore, the four mentioned would receive priority placement. In 2014, in a combined project, by act of the Macon County Commission, Macon County Board of Education and Town of Notasulga, Notasulga High School honored the legendary coaches by naming the football stadium Sanderson-Knapp Football Stadium and the gym Obadiah Threadgill Gymnasium. NHS Principal Robert Anderson (deceased) will receive special recognition at a later date.”
            When he retired after a 30-year teaching and coaching career, Threadgill’s coaching legacy included:

·         More than 900 wins coaching boys’ and girls’ basketball at varsity and JV levels.

·         Two boys’ state championships in 1987 and 1992; one girls’ state championship in 2001; two state tournament runners-up.

·         Nine Final 48 appearances, including three in a row in girls’ basketball.

·         Nine consecutive Southeast Region appearances.

·         State Coach of the Year for boys in 1987 and 1992 and for girls in 2001,  and six Region Coach of the Year awards in boys’ basketball and six in girls’ basketball.

·         Coached both boys’ and girls’ teams in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Game.

·         Notasulga High School Gymnasium was named in his honor.


Dr. Lenda Jo Connell, wife of principal Anderson, said Threadgill’s strong character was the key.
         “Character can be formed in many ways,” she said. “Coach Threadgill’s unshakeable character came from a rock-solid family who valued faith, family and education leveled with a good dose of humor! This is a dedicated, strong family that has left their mark and continues to leave their mark on high school athletics in the state of Alabama.

“Coach Threadgill is the type of gentleman whom you want influencing young people. A humble man, I never heard him say ‘I’. It was always ‘We’ when referring to his many successful endeavors. Because of his commitment, dedication, and willingness to work together, Notasulga High School stands today as a testament to men like Coach Threadgill, who believed that (education-based) athletics could build young men and women and community.”  
SATURDAY: Edward Wood’s impact still strong after four decades.