Cleveland County Sports Hall of Fame returns with 6-person induction class

By Richard Walker

The Cleveland County Sports Hall of Fame, sponsored by the Fellowship of Christian Athletes, will hold its first awards banquet since before the coronavirus pandemic when it inducts six new members on May 23 at the Shelby City Park.

The 55th annual banquet is slated for 6:30 p.m. and will feature a barbecue meal and no guest speaker due to the large number of award winner.

Tickets are $10 apiece and can be purchased at Shelby City Park, Medical Arts Pharmacy in Shelby plus the offices of the four public senior high schools in Cleveland County as the event returns after a two-year hiatus caused by the pandemic.

Shamar Finney (right) chasing a Michigan quarterback during his Penn State career.

The 2022 induction class is comprised of William Grant “Hoss” Duncan, Shamar Finney, Bob Jones, Charlie Noggle, Jerry Ratchford and Lance Ware.

Duncan is a legendary softball player and coach for more than 40 years who drew the attention of the Boston Red Sox when he was a teenager.

Finney was a multi-sport standout at Crest who helped the Chargers win two state titles before playing at Penn State who twice was invited to Washington Redskins training camp.

Jones was a three-sport standout at Shelby High who played basketball and baseball at Gardner-Webb before spending three seasons in the San Francisco Giants organization. Later, Jones was high school football coach at Lowell’s old Holbrook High and Kings Mountain High.

Noggle was a standout quarterback at Shelby High and N.C. State, helping the Wolfpack win the 1965 ACC championship.

Ratchford was a standout offensive lineman at Shelby High and Wingate University, in 1990 becoming one of the first All-South Atlantic Conference honorees in Wingate history.

Ware was a standout offensive lineman at Shelby High and Appalachian State before coaching at both schools. At Shelby, he guided the Golden Lions to a 99-25 record from 2011 to 2018 with five state titles.

In addition to the Hall of Fame introductions, special awards to be handed out include Honor athletes at Burns, Crest, Shelby and Kings Mountain high schools and Gardner-Webb University, the WOHS Sports Fan of the Year, the Paris Yelton Memorial Service award and more than 55 Certificates of Merit for achievements in various sporting endeavors.

Cleveland County Sports Hall of Fame history:

Charlie Noggle was a two-year starting quarterback at N.C. State.

Roster of Inductees:
1965 R.W. “Casey” Morris
1966 B.E. “Pop” Simmons
1967 Lloyd Little
1968 Buck Archer
1969 Gerald Allen
1970 Bobby Bell
1971 Hoyt Bailey
1972 Eddie Holbrook
1973 Tom Wright Sr.
1974 Mel Phillips
1975 David Thompson
1976 John Winston
1977 Roger McKee
1978 Pete Webb
1979 George “Fluffy” Watts
1980 Robert Reynolds
1981 Katherine Reynolds
1982 Virgil Weathers
1983 Earl Parker
1984 Malcolm Brown, Norman Harris
1985 Shelby Post 82 1945 American Legion world champions
1986 Gene Kirkpatrick
1987 Bud Hardin
1988 Jim Taylor, Tim Wilkison
1989 Ed Peeler
1990 Bill Proctor
1991 Jim Horn
1992 Dr. Lonnie Proctor
1993 Blaine Baxter, W.E. Halyburton, Hal Dedmon
1994 John Henry Moss
1995 Billy Champion, Manley Runyans
1996 Art Moss, Bill Lynn
1997 Jake Early, Don Patrick
1998 Leonard Morrison, Henry Jones
1999 Steve Curtis, George Litton
2000 Jim Washburn, Alvin Gentry
2001 Ron Greene, Jerry Bryson
2002 Bob Ingle, Charlie Harbison
2003 Dick LeGrand, George Corn, Marjorie Crisp
2004 Sid Bryson, Jim Corn, Lester Dixon
2005 Wade Vaughn, Gene Latham, Tee Burton
2006 Suzanne Grayson, Charlotte Smith, Millie Keeter-Holbrook
2007 John Taylor, Roy Kirby, Chris Norman
2008 Stan Sherman, Tommy London, Kent Bridges
2009 George Adams, Kenneth Howell Jr,, Bob Litton
2010 Mike Grayson, Alan Ford, Tony Wray
2011 Jack Patterson, Woody Fish, Scottie Montgomery, Ralph Dixon Sr.
2012 David Steeves, Frank Love Jr., Bryan Jones
2013 Chad Holbrook, Bobby Lane, Tom Wright Jr.
2014 Burney Drake, Richard Gold, Steve Sherman
2015 Joe Craver, Charlie Holtzclaw, Blandine Tate
2016 Coleman Hunt, Jeff Jones, Steve Moffitt, Cliff Wilson
2017 Kevin Mack, Tony Scott, Phil Wallace
2018 Dremiel Byers, Andy Foster, Dan Greer, Aubrey Hollifield, Marcus Mauney
2019 Derrick Chambers, Jackie Houston Falls, Billy Standridge, Mike Stewart
2020-21 cancelled (coronavirus)
2022 William Grant “Hoss” Duncan, Shamar Finney, Bob Jones, Charlie Noggle, Jerry Ratchford, Lance Ware

Lance Ware

Guest speakers:
1965 Bill Tate
1966 Frank Howard
1967 Paul Dietzel
1968 Frank Tarkenton
1969 Tom Matte
1970 Roman Gabriel
1971 Bill Curry
1972 Gale Sayers
1973 Bill Dooley and Lou Holtz
1974 Bob Matheson
1975 Norm Sloan
1976 Archie Griffin
1977 Lee Rose
1978 Dick Crum
1979 Bill Foster
1980 Jim Valvano
1981 Mickey Marvin
1982 Dave Rowe
1983 Junior Johnson and Darrell Waltrip
1984 Steve Sloan
1985 Bob Horner
1986 Bob Staak
1987 Tim Wilkison
1988 Sparky Woods
1989 no speaker
1990 Mack Brown
1991 Ken Hatfield
1992 Dave Odom
1993 Charlie Adams
1994 David Thompson
1995 Fred Goldsmith
1996 Kay Yow
1997 Kevin Steele
1998 Sam Mills
1999 Ken Rucker
2000 Ken Smith
2001 Chuck Amato
2002 John Bunting
2003 Jim Grobe
2004 Skip Prosser
2005 Que Tucker
2006 Tommy Burleson
2007 Jerry Moore
2008 Bobby Lutz
2009 David Cutcliffe
2010 Ron Wellman
2011 Judy Rose
2012 Woody Durham
2013 Chad Holbrook
2014 Dave Doeren
2015 Carroll McCray
2016 Charlotte Smith
2017 Larry Fedora
2018 John Swofford
2019 Tim Craft
2022 no speaker