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Forsyth, Georgia
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June 26, 2019     The Monroe County Reporter
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June 26, 2019
 

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rter 1 June 26, 2019 Monroe Academy footballl alums gather to celebrate the 1973 & 1974 title seasons. WE HAVE IT COVERED IF IT'S PLAYED @ e Eight new members were inducted as the third-ever class of the Forsyth-Monroe County Sports Hall of Fame in front of a crowd for more than 300 at a banquet held at the Monroe County Conference Center on Saturday evening. The induct- ees included: former Monroe Academy football coach Edgar Hatcher, former Hub- bard High football star Jimmy Watts, former Mary Persons and Dallas Cowboys defensive back Tra Battle, former MP basketball standout Richard Chambliss, Iongtime MP sports historian Bobby Melton, MP alum and former Griffin head football coach Lloyd Bohannon and two posthumous inductees, former MP girls basketball star Geraldine Ham and former MP football alum and supporter Harold Clarke. All living inductees at- tended the banquet other than Watts, who lives in New York. Watts' brother John accepted Watts' plaque on his behalf. Ham's son Jerry and Clarke's son Hal each gave speeches on behalf of their late fathers. Longtime Macon Telegraph columnist Ed Grisamore served as the event's emcee while Forsyth-Mon- roe County Sports Hall of Fame member Jim Hardin welcomed the crowd and handed out plaques. Players, cheerleaders and managers of Hatcher's 1973 and 1974 Monroe Acad- emy state championship football squads were also honored at the banquet as Monroe alum Dr. Clayton Cox reminisced about the athletic successes of the Mustangs' squads of Hatchet's era. Also honored on Saturday were MP 2019 alums Alex Kite and .Macy Morris, who were recognized as top scholar-athletes. Kite will play baseball at Gordon College next spring while Morris will be a cheerleader at UGA this fall. Pictured above: 2019 inductee Edgar Hatcher (left) shares a moment with his son Chris, the current head football coach at Samford University. See Page 2B for more banquet photos. (Photo/Richard Dumas) Bottom left: Forsyth-Monroe County Sports Hall of Fame president Bobby Melton re- ceives a Hall of Fame plaque from board member Jim Hardin. Melton, a lifelong Georgia Tech fan, joked in his acceptance speech that Tech's sports success is largely attribut- able to other famous Bobbys: Dodd, Ross and Cremins. Bottom right: Richard Chambliss Sr. recalled setting MP's single-game boys basket- ball scoring record. Top right: Forsyth native Lloyd Bohannon coached future NFL stars Willie Gault and Jessie Tuggle. Top left: Tra Battle recounted how days working hard in MP'S weight room prepared him for future success at UGA and in the NFL (Photos/Richard Dumas) FROM THE PRESS BOX surge to top Two quick thoughts on Major League Baseball as the regu- lar season reaches its midpoint. 1.) Thanks to a blazing 16-6 June record, the Atlanta Braves are right back where they finished the 2018 regular season, in first place in the National League East. The Braves are doing things differently than they did for most of their stretch of'90s dominance. This year's squad features one of the most powerful lineups in franchise history led by peren- nial MVP candidate Freddie Freeman. Six Braves have already reached double figures in homers and at least three more Atlanta hitters are likely to eclipse 10 bombs by season's end. The Braves also recently made their most significant free agent acquisi- tion in years when Atlanta signed former Cy Young Award winner Dallas Keuchel tbr the remainder of the season. It's imperative that Keuchel regains his ace fbrm soon as the rest of Atlantds pitching staff: is youthful and inconsistent. Nevertheless, 2019 appears to r & " " : ,~ represent Atlantds best chance to get back to the World Series since the Braves' run of N.L East dominance ended in the mid-2000s. 2.) qhe warm welcome that Los Angeles Angels slugger Albert Pujols received in his long-awaited return to his old stomping grounds of St. Louis last weekend made evident a problem/hced by MLB. The current baseball landscape features very few living legends like Pujols that remain box office draws. In fact, there are only tbur active players, Pu- jols, Migud Cabrera, Robinson Cano and Nick Markakis, with more than 2,000 hits in their careers and just three ac- tive players, Pujols, Cabrera and Edwin Encarnacion, with more than 400 home runs. One of the allures of baseball has always been its meaningful statistics, but Pujols, who earlier this season became the fifth big leaguer ever to eclipse 2,000 RBIs, is one of the only active players anywhere dose to reaching any significant career marks. Veterans have always played key roles on winning baseball squads, but MLB has started to skew younger and younger. That means MLB will have to turn to current stars like Mike Trout, Bryce Harper and Mookie Betts to increase the game's popularity. Time will tell whether this generation is up to that task. Our annual "Who's Who in Monroe County and Middle Georgia" is coming up. This special supplement features those businesses that have earned a great reputation for outstandJng service. Make sure your business is included! Color $60 NAME5 & RE!:' t~T Ai O N 5, Ca Carolyn Martel at 478-960-2259 or emaJ her at Ads@MyMCR.net to reserve your space!