Hall of Fame Class for 2016 named

By Jeff Linville - [email protected]

The Mount Airy Sports Hall of Fame has released the names for the Class of 2016.

The Hall of Fame will induct three individuals and one team into the Hall of Fame as well as one person for its Granite City Award.

The inductees vary greatly in time span from the late 1940s through the early 1990s to the present day.

These individuals played and/or coached several different sports: football, volleyball, basketball, baseball, tennis and softball.

Clarence Hines is the latest addition from a powerful Bears football team from the late 1940s. That list includes Bill Cox, who went on to star for Duke, John Coble, Charles Atkins, Corky Fowler, John Gruble, Coach Wallace Shelton and 2014 recipient James Frye, who died last year.

A newspaper clipping describes the newest addition thus: “Punk” Hines, that rugged, hard-hitting blocking back for the Bears, weight 165 pounds, is 5 foot, 10 inches and blocks as though he were the largest man on the team.

Sarah Knott was the first Lady Bear to earn 12 letters in sports, having played four years on varsity in volleyball, basketball and softball from 1988 to 1992.

Knott earned five all-conference honors and was twice named player of the year in volleyball. She also has coached and refereed several sports over the past 20 years.

In 2005 and 2006, the Granite Bears won back-to-back boys’ tennis titles under Coach Scott John. The boys team will be entered as a group. The squad also had two state titles in individual tournaments.

This was the start of an era of domination that saw the Bears accumulate 10 titles in dual-team and individual play over a seven-year stretch.

From the current era, several people nominated Mount Airy’s athletic director and assistant football coach.

Donald Price, who is battling cancer, has served as a lineman coach for two decades, covering the days of David Diamont, Eddie Cobb and now Kelly Holder. He has helped the team win nine conference titles, orchestrating the run blocking schemes for a team that has relied on its running game. In 2008, the Bears set a school record with 845 points scored while bringing home the state championship.

Price also helped coach softball for many years.

In 2003, he was named athletic director and spearheaded improvements to the baseball and softball parks and a new gym floor.

A former city commissioner will receive the Granite City Award, given annually to someone who has made significant contributions to sports other than as a coach, player or administrator.

David Beal played baseball in high school and for 20 years volunteered his time to the Winston-Salem Warthogs. In 2003, Beal was voted into the Greater Winston-Salem Baseball Hall of Fame.

Beal is a past city police chief, clerk of superior court and vice president of Renfro Corp. He has been on the board of many councils and civic organizations, including the Mount Airy Parks and Recreation Committee and Surry County Parks and Recreation Committee.

He might have been named to the Hall of Fame sooner, but he was ineligible previously because he was a member of the Hall of Fame selection committee. Having stepped down last year, Beal was a new nominee for 2016.

By Jeff Linville

[email protected]

Reach Jeff at 415-4692.

Reach Jeff at 415-4692.

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