Also inducted was tennis star Fern Lee “Peachy” Kellmeyer. The former two-time state singles champion was the youngest female ever to compete in the U.S. Nationals at age 15.
She became a pioneer not only for tennis but for all of female athletics. In 1966, while the athletic director at Marymount College, she spearheaded legal action to gain college scholarships for female athletes. That paved the way for the creation of Title IX, which guarantees equality for female athletics at the college level.
Ironically, on the same day that Kellmeyer became a hall of famer, Lincoln’s Emily Knight received her all-state football certificate. A kicker, Knight is the first-ever football first-team all-stater in West Virginia history.
Meadow Bridge running back Jake Parker was unable to attend the event, but is a Harrison Kennedy Scholarship Award winner. Parker, the state’s leading rusher last fall with 2,505 yards, will walk on at Marshall.
Independence wrestling coach Cliff Warden was recognized as the state’s Class AA/A wrestling coach of the year. He led the Patriots to their first state title since 1996. Also, Westside’s Jamie Lusk was honored as Class AA girls basketball coach of the year after leading the Lady Renegades to their second state championship in three seasons.
First-team all-staters in football and boys and girls basketball were recognized. Locally, those players were:
--- Football — Jalen Jones (Oak Hill), Mike Mullens (Westside), D.J. Stewart and D.J. Edwards (Bluefield), Austin Hill (Nicholas County), Erik Lindsey (Summers County), Casey Saunders (Wyoming East), Jake Parker (Meadow Bridge), Marquis Frazier and Malik Boatwright (Greenbrier West) and Devin Rose (Pocahontas County).
--- Boys basketball — Rondale Watson (Greenbrier East), Anthony Eades and Lykel Collier (Bluefield), Corey Bowles (Westside), Austin Canada (Wyoming East), Elisha Kidd (Greater Beckley Christian) and Zac Warden (Valley).
--- Girls basketball — Hope Lester (Westside), Brandy Morrison (Summers County) and Tristen Day (Pocahontas County).
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