Great Week Zero story to start our 2017-18 High School sports season off!
The AHSAA was saddened to learn of the death of Boaz High School Coach Eric Whaley. Whaley, who resigned as head football coach last winter, died Sunday after battling cancer. Whaley, 39, is survived by his wife Alison, children Addie Grace and Tyler.
“He fought a courageous battle that has inspired us all,” AHSAA Executive Director Steve Savarese said. “I experienced first-hand the impact Coach Whaley has made to those around him through his leadership as a coach and teacher. He always strived to use the opportunity to teach his players the important life lessons that can be learned from playing a high school sport as well as living his life based on his strong faith and Christian principles.
“He has meant so much to the students, teachers and children of Boaz because of the example of his daily walk. On behalf of the AHSAA, I offer our most sincere condolences to his family and the entire Boaz community."
A celebration of life service will be held, Tuesday, August 15 at 7 p.m. at Boaz High School’s gymnasium. The family will receive friends from 4 until 7 prior to the service. The Funeral service will be Wednesday at 2 p.m., at St. Paul United Methodist Church in Boaz with visitation from noon until 2. Burial will follow at Hillcrest Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Eric Whaley Memorial Scholarship Fund, c/o Snead State Community College.
MONTGOMERY – Six officials with a combined 173 years of officiating experience received the Greg Brewer Distinguished Service Award at Saturday’s AHSAA Officials Awards Luncheon at the Montgomery Renaissance Hotel and Convention Center. Receiving the AHSAA’s highest officiating honor were Larry Galloway (38 years) of Hartford; Don Hudson (37 years) of Oxford); Bill Young (35 years) of Dadeville; Jimmy Isbell (34 years) of Tuscumbia; Gwyn Morgan (34 years) of Moulton; and Gary Knight (32 years) Dothan.
Longtime contest official, district director and volunteer Gary McGriff of Holly Pond was also recognized McGriff received the National Federation of High School Associations (NFHS) National Contributor Award.
He has been a visionary, always providing opportunities for officials to grow technologically, he continues to be a state leader with regard to communication, not only between officials, but most importantly our Association. According to Steve Savarese, Executive Director of the AHSAA, “The greatest compliment I could provide Gary is to describe Gary as a servant, dedicating his life to serve the AHSAA through officiating.”
More than 370 attended the luncheon that recognized all contest officials who officiated in state championship events in 2016-17 as district and state officials of the year. Wright Waters, former Sun Belt Conference Commissioner who became the first executive director of the Football Bowl Association, was the keynote speaker at the luncheon that officially closed the 2017 AHSAA Summer Conference and Coaching School.
State Officials of the Year: Selected AHSAA State Officials of the year in their respective sports were: Doug Baxter of Montgomery (Baseball); Katrina Evans of Mobile (Basketball); Pete Gonzalez Montgomery (Soccer); Jeff Bridges of Dothan (Softball); Keith Wilemon of Hartselle (Track); Jim Kirkpatrick of Huntsville (Volleyball); and Justin Miller of Decatur (Wrestling).
ASOF Scholarship Recipients: The Alabama Sports Officials Foundation also presented xx scholarships to children of officials in honor of the dedication and sacrifice families make to support the service of the state’s contest officials. To be eligible, the student must be planning attend a post-secondary school in Alabama.
Those selected for the grants were: Cora Addison Bryan, Troy; Michael Evan Shaddix, Fort Payne; Andrew David Hester, Decatur; Matthew William Hrabovsky, Daphne; Tessa Faith Ivey, Nauvoo; Moriah Lee Brundidge, Brewton; Carly Alana Westmoreland, Addison; Abigail Faye Howard, Oxford; and Patrick Joseph Callahan, Hoover.
AHSAA District Officials of the Year
East Central: Larry Stubbs, Jacksonvillle
North Central: Raymond Crawford, Dora
Northeast: Bobby Scheppler, Huntsville
Northwest: Loyd Potter, Decatur
South Central: Doug Baxter, Montgomery
Southeast: Brian Cross, Andalusia
Southwest: Tim Naber, Theodore
West Central: Danny Matherson, Moundville
East Central: Rusty Burroughs, Jacksonville
North Central: Scott Richards, Homewood
Northeast: Marvin Wesley, New Market
Northwest: Brandon Oaks, Hartselle
South Central: Bobby Tindal, Auburn
Southeast: Reginald Franklin, Dothan
Southwest: Katrina Evans, Mobile
West Central: James Sewell, Linden
East Central: Johnny Brothers, Southside-Gadsden
North Central: Kevin Sutton, Birmingham
Northeast: Willis Jackson, Harvest
Northwest: Gene Dickinson, Decatur
South Central: Frank Parsons, Montgomery
Southeast: Ricky Morgan, Geneva
Southwest: Ken Atkins, Demopolis
West Central: Fred Cody, Northport
East Central: Charles Stanley, Guntersville
North Central: John David Nicholson, Vestavia Hills
Northwest: “Ed” Tate Wallace, Hartselle
South Central: Pete Gonzalez, Montgomery
Southeast: Ben Davis, Andalusia
Southwest: Ryan Campbell, Spanish Fort
East Central: Nick Higdon, Albertville
North Central: Tessa Ivey, Nauvoo
Northeast: Aaron Golden, Madison
Northwest: Scottie Nichols, Sheffield
South Central: Eric Morris, Montgomery
Southeast: Jeff Bridges, Dothan
Southwest: Tim Porter, Mobile
West Central: Carolyn Roshell, Holt
TRACK & FIELD
East Central: Earl Lewis, Sylacauga
North Central: Stan Blakemore, Vestavia Hills
Northeast: Jeff Bradshaw, Madison
Northwest: Keith Wilemon, Hartselle
Southeast: Darrell Houston, Daphne
Southwest: Sheila Crenshaw, Mobile,
East Central: Anthony Dupree, Leesburg
North Central: Anissa Smith, Birmingham
Northeast: Jim Kirkpatrick, Huntsville
Northwest: Walter Young, Moulton
South Central: Walter Crosby, Millbrook
Southeast: Michael Clayton, Dothan
Southwest: Dwight Charley, Butler
West Central: Chris Cummings, Jasper
East Central: Brent Helms, Southside
North Central: Mark Snider, Trussville
Northeast: Joe Stephenson, Union Grove