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UWA Tigers induct Wright, Stancil into Athletic hall of fame

Contributed Report

LIVINGSTON – The University of West Alabama will add two new inductees into its Athletic Hall of Fame when the Tigers host West Georgia on Saturday, Oct. 9, for Homecoming. Lynn Wright, a three-year letterman for the UWA football team (1972-74) and Deborah Stancil, a two-time letterwinner in women’s basketball (1979-80, 1980-81) will make up the 2004 class.

Wright, a native of Carrollton, Ala., helped lead the Tigers to a 22-7-3 overall record during his three years in Livingston, including an overall record of 8-1-2 and a trip to the NAIA Semifinals in 1972. After graduating from UWA in 1975, Wright began his coaching career in 1983 at McIntosh Academy, where he would serve as head coach through the 1987 season. During his stint at MA, he won four ACAC 2A State Titles and the NACA Division II National Championship in 1984.

In 1988, Wright accepted the head-coaching job at Pickens Academy. Over a brilliant 16-year stay at PA (still active as the head coach), he has led the Pirates to five AISA 2A State Championships in football and three baseball State Titles as well. He has an impressive 211-55 overall record in 22 years of coaching football and currently owns a 327-77 record in 11 years of coaching baseball.

Wright has also coached five undefeated football teams and has put together winning streaks of 47 and 32 games. In addition to coaching, he also serves as the headmaster at Pickens Academy, and has won the AISA 2A Presidents Award for the Highest Academic School in its class. Wright is also on the AISA State Board and is a 2003 inductee into the AISA Hall of Fame.

“I am overwhelmed,” said Wright. “I could never thank the people of LU and UWA enough for what they mean to me. They have shaped my whole life.”

Stancil, a native of Meridian, Miss., is just the third woman inducted into the UWA Athletic Hall of Fame. During her decorated, two-year playing career in Livingston, she, along with fellow hall-of-famer Rita Higginbotham made up arguably the best backcourt in Tiger history, as the program surged to a 49-16 record over that span.

As a junior, Stancil scored 17.7 points per game, connecting on 48.3 percent of her shots from the field (247-of-511) to go along with 195 assists. On the defensive end of the floor, she totaled a whopping 98 steals. As a senior, she continued her brilliant play, connecting on 54.2 percent of her shots from the floor en route to averaging 15.2 points per game. She also dished out 203 assists to go along with 87 steals, and posted a career-best 34 points versus the Mississippi University for Women.

Stancil’s name still appears in the UWA career record book in several categories, including 1,009 points scored, which is good enough for second place. Her 426 field goals made and 185 steals are both good enough for second all-time, and her 398 assists places her third all-time.

“I feel very honored,” said Stancil. “I know that I can do anything through Christ. It was an exciting time for me when I played at UWA.”

Wright and Stancil will have their names inscribed into UWA’s Athletics history, as they will join 46 other UWA Athletic Hall-of-Famers displayed in the James P. Homer Field House. They will also be recognized as honorary captains for UWA’s Homecoming contest with West Georgia on Oct. 9 at Tiger Stadium. The official induction ceremony will be held at the National Alumni Association Meeting and Award Presentation that morning at the Bell Conference Center.

– Jason Hughes