Marengo County Sports Hall of Fame inducts Class of 2024

Published 2:42 pm Wednesday, February 21, 2024

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The Marengo County Sports Hall of Fame (MCSHOF) inducted its 2024 class during the annual banquet held on Monday, February 12.

Five new members were inducted into the hall of fame: Ted Marshall, Diana Parten Miskow, Alfred Padilla, and Sam “Supe” Williams Jr., and Sam “Boomer” Williams III. Marshall’s award was presented to him by his brother Gerald Marshall, Miskow’s award was presented to her by Steve King, Padilla received his award from Andy Phillips, the award for Sam “Supe” Williams Jr. was presented by Will Moore, and Sam “Boomer” Williams III received his award was presented by Louise Drayton.

Six awards, including the inductee awards, were presented during the banquet, along with a special recognition of the 1979 Sweet Water High School State Championship Baseball team.

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The first award of the night was the Tre Jones Memorial Scholarship presented to Ashton Holladay Moorer of Demopolis High School. The Tre Jones Memorial Scholarship is awarded to a graduating senior from a school in Marengo County, and is selected by a committee appointed by the principal of the chosen school. The award was presented by Rodney Rowser.

Ashton Holladay Moorer of Demopolis High School was awarded the Tre Jones Memorial Scholarship. Pictured is Moorer and Rodney Rowser. Photo by Andrea Burroughs.

Moorer is the daughter of Natalie and Steven Moorer of Demopolis. She was born and raised in Demopolis. Growing up in Demopolis, Ashton has emerged herself in a variety of activities. She has been a varsity cheerleader for the past 4 years, a member of the volleyball team, and a varsity softball player for the past 6 years. Her softball career kicked off when she was 4 years old with Demopolis Dixie youth softball league.

The 1979 Sweet Water High School State Championship Baseball team was recognized next  for their accomplishments. Several members of that team were present at the banquet. Marengo County Superintendent Luke Hallmark recognized the team.

“It’s hard to believe that 45 years ago, the very first championship in baseball was at Sweet Water, and that team was coached by Victor Scott. If you talk to the people who played for Coach Scott and got to know him, they’ll all tell you he was a heck of a coach. And that this team probably would not have done as well as it did without someone like Coach Scott,” said Hallmark.

Hallmark said the team had to play against some very good opponents like J.U. Blacksher, Wicksburg, Montgomery Academy, and Mars Hill. Members of that team were Scott Mayton, Ronald Robinson, Joe Ballard, Cedric Landrum, Wayne Luker, Melvin Johnson (deceased), Jamie Nelson, Butch Black, Clay Davis, Danny Flowers, Jeff Lewis, Jimmy Daniels, Coach Victor Scott, Charlie Bonner, Michael Landrum, Charlie Glass, Allen Etheridge (deceased), Johnathan White, Kerry Parten, Dale Jones, and Leonard Lockett (Manager).

“As much as we’ll recognize those going into the Hall of Fame, I guarantee you they’ll say some of the best times they’ve had was on their team,” said Hallmark. “Winning an MVP or going off to college and play, they can always go back and reflect on their high school team and the friends they made. It is something that will always be with you.”

The first inductee award of the night went to Ted Marshall and it was presented to him by his brother Gerald Marshall.

“My dad, who is no longer with us, always told us to find something that we’re passionate about. Work hard, be good at it, and good things will happen,” said Gerald Marshall. “And for my brother, good things have happened. I have seen his work ethic in his coaching and teaching. He still instills those habits that our dad instilled in us when we were growing up.”

Ted Marshall was one of five people inducted into the 2024 Marengo County Sports Hall of Fame. Pictured is Kenny Freeman (left) and Marshall (right). Photo by Andrea Burroughs.

Ted earned five varsity letters in baseball while playing two years (1986-1987) for Coach Randy Smith (MCSHOF 2016) and three years (1988-90) for Coach Nolan Atkins. His talent was really on display when he was on the mound. He led the baseball team to four state championships in two different classifications.

Sweet Water High School won two state titles in the 1A classification defeating Hale County (7-6, 11-1) to earn the title “1986 1A-State Champions” and two years later defeated Hale County again (15-0,6-5) to become the “1988 1A-State Champions.” The next year, Sweet Water High School moved up to the 2A classification where Ted led the Bulldogs back to the playoffs and earned the title “1989 2A-State Champions” defeating Cordova (5-2, 6-9, 8-3). His senior year, he again took the mound and led the Bulldogs back to the state title game defeating Springville (12-8, 10-0) to be named the “1990 2A-State Champions.”

After accepting his award, Marshall thanked everyone who has supported him over the years, particularly his mother.

“My mom did a lot for us. She sacrificed a lot for us. She didn’t have to do it, but she did, and I appreciate that because she paved the way for us,” said Marshall. “We did no go without and she didn’t complain. And I want to thank her for doing so much.”

Marshall also thanked the MCSHOF for recognizing the hard work its inductees have done and continue to do.

“It’s not easy to get out there and make those sacrifices. But it was a dream that we had and I thank you for that,” said Marshall.

The next award was presented to Diana Parten Miskow by Steve King who coached Miskow during her college years.

“Diana just had a knack for her sport. She knew where the pitches were going to be, she read it and she set up. I was very blessed to have such a great leader in the short stop position,” said King. “Her maturity, leadership, and no nonsense approach she took in practices and games is the reason she’s being in inducted.”

Diana Parten Miskow was one of five people inducted into the 2024 Marengo County Sports Hall of Fame. Pictured is Kenny Freeman (left) and Miskow (right). Photo by Andrea Burroughs.

Shelton State Community College Softball Coach Steve King signed Miskow to a scholarship that allowed her to continue her softball career. She made an immediate impact in the Junior College division playing shortstop in both the 1983 and 1984 seasons. In her freshman year, she helped lead the Lady Buccaneers to win the state championship and earned the Most Valuable Player in the AJCAA State Tournament with a .388 batting average and 29 runs batted in. The Lady Bucs traveled to Hanceville, AL where they played in the National Junior College Athletic Association tournament and made it to the final four where Diana was selected to the National All-Tournament Team.

Upon accepting her award, Miskow said that softball taught her a lot of things. It taught her how to be a team player and how to cooperate with the people around her.

“Softball is not an individual sport. And if you think of it as an individual sport, you think that you’re inducted because you’re the best player out there. You can’t do it without you pitchers and catchers. If you don’t have a good team behind you like we had, it makes things hard,” said Miskow. “Softball will help with your career path and wherever you go. As long as you can be a team player and you’re not an individual, it can help you go far.”

Alfred Padilla received his award next from Andy Phillips. Phillips played baseball under Padilla.

“Alfred’s willingness and dedication to spend hours or days coaching kids that weren’t his own. You don’t see too many people volunteer coaching that don’t have kids playing. There is nothing wrong with that, but I think it speaks volumes of a man who would spend this many years to his craft,” said Phillips. “I think of two words when I think of Alfred and its commitment and loyalty. To his family, his country, and to his community. So when I think about him and all the different facets of him and his love for kids and people, I can’t think of a more deserving recipient than him.”

Alfred Padilla was one of five people inducted into the 2024 Marengo County Sports Hall of Fame. Pictured is Kenny Freeman (left) and Padilla (right). Photo by Andrea Burroughs.

In 1993, Alfred coached the Demopolis Dixie Youth All-Stars to a State Runner-up finish. He also spent 10 years, from 2000 to 2010, as District 4 Assistant District Director and State Board Member for Dixie Youth Baseball. As a youth league baseball coach, he was 20-0 his first year and won numerous league titles. It was always every player’s hope to get “the call” from Alfred on draft night saying that he would be their coach that summer. One future major leaguer who got “the call” was Andy Phillips (MCSHOF 2014).

“It’s an honor to be included in this great group of people. Hats off the to Hall of Fame for recognizing community service. It is a foundation of our community,” said Padilla. “People who grow up here show great pride in where they are from. I think we can all agree that those years at the ball park with our kids and friends were some of the best times. I have made some life-long friends that I would not trade for the world.”

The next award went to Sam “Boomer” Williams Jr. and was presented to him by his sister Louise Drayton.

Williams led his teams to two area championships, one as a junior and another as a senior, and he earned, “First Team All-State” selection both seasons. As a senior, he received the Captain Award, Best Rebounder, and Most Blocked Shots award as he led his team to a 21-9 record averaging 17 points and 10 rebounds a game. He played in the Alabama-Mississippi All-Star Basketball game and was a McDonald’s All-American nominee following the success of his senior season.

Sam “Boomer” Williams III was one of five people inducted into the 2024 Marengo County Sports Hall of Fame. Pictured is Kenny Freeman (left) and Williams (right). Photo by Andrea Burroughs.

Williams said that the household he grew up in is the reason he became the athlete that he became. His siblings played other sports, his mother was a hard worker who instilled a strong work ethic in him, and his father was one of the biggest reasons he played basketball.

“My success as an athlete and as a hard worker, I owe to my parents. My dad was one of the first people to believe in me, before I even believed in myself,” said Williams. “I missed a lot of opportunities and days to spend time with my father before he passed. He sacrificed a lot for me and my family. Don’t live life like you know when it’s going to end. Call the people that you don’t talk to or the people you haven’t seen. Reach out and talk to them while you can.”

The last award was presented to Sam “Supe” Williams Jr. by his long-time friend Will Moore. Sam Williams Jr., passed away ten years ago and his award was accepted by his children.

Sam Williams Jr. played semi-pro basketball for the Demopolis Hawks, founded by Thomas “Slop” Watters and Leroy “Big Red” Mitchell, for twenty years from 1972-1992. Sam ended his basketball career as player-coach for the Hawks.

Sam “Supe” Williams Jr was posthumously inducted into the 2024 Marengo County Sports Hall of Fame. Pictured are his children Zach, Louise, Sam III, Lee Arthur, Darius, Dominique, and Samantha. Photo by Andrea Burroughs.

Sam served as a volunteer as an assistant coach for the Demopolis High School Girls Basketball team for a several years. He worked for the cement plant for over 30 years and had plans to retire before he passed away. He left seven children, five boys and two girls. Zach, Louise, Sam III, Lee Arthur, Darius, Dominique, and Samantha.

The emcee for this year’s banquet was Kenny Freeman, the invocation was provided by Reverend Dewayne Charleston, and dinner was provided by A Slab and More.

Sponsors for the 2024 Marengo County Sports Hall of Fame were Marengo Insurance Agency, Alabama ONE, Batter Up Sports Grill, The Butcher Shop, Two Rivers Lumber Company, Fyzical, Loyd and Dinning, Papa’s Foods, Sweet Water State Bank, Trustmark, Naheola Credit Union, and Robertson Banking Company.