Editor After a one-year hiatus, the Macon County Sports Hall of Fame inducted five members last Saturday evening in a ceremony held at the Macon County High indoor sports complex. Of those five individuals, four were Macon County High School graduates, three of which played for the Macon County High School girls basketball program. “Those three players were a big part of the Macon County basketball tradition,” said long-time Macon County High girls head basketball coach Gary Carter, who presented Alicia Cook Thompson for induction. “That’s the reason things (winning tradition) have kept going. “You can see why we won. I tell people … you can’t win without good players. The thing they have … that have such a strong mentality, and you see where they are today (in their professional careers).” Thompson was joined by former teammate, Kim Swindle Hale, and Dana Leath Willis, who graduated one year prior to Thompson and Hale entering high school. Thompson and Hale played from 1992-96, with that duo helping the program reach the Class AA State Tournament in 1994. Thompson — who scored more than 1,000 points — was selected as the district’s most valuable player as a senior in addition to earning all-midstate honors. Hale — was presented for induction by her father, David Swindle — was an all-district honoree on the hardwood but also excelled as a track and field athlete, finishing third in the state in the high jump. Willis — who also played volleyball at MCHS — scored more than 1,000 points during her basketball career, which spanned from 1988-92. She was the two-time Vol State Conference Most Valuable Player, three-time all-district selection and a four-time all-region honoree before playing for four years at Cumberland University for head coach Mitch Walters, who presented Willis for induction on Saturday. Former Macon County High football standout Jamie Fitzpatrick was also inducted. Fitzpatrick — who played from 1992-95 — was the Region 5-3A Defensive Player of the Year in 1995, a first-team all-midstate selection and helped the program to the playoffs that fall. Fitzpatrick — who was presented for induction by former Tiger football coach Jon Offutt — also played baseball at MCHS and continued his football career as a walk-on at Tennessee Tech University. Long-time radio personality Bill Speck was another inductee. Speck — who was presented for induction by his granddaughter, Brooke Collins — broadcasted a variety of sporting events from 1960-2001 involving the Macon County Junior High, Macon County High School and Red Boiling Springs athletic programs. He also coached Little League baseball in Lafayette for eight years. The ceremony was last held in 2019, as last year’s induction ceremony was not held due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

After a one-year hiatus, the Macon County Sports Hall of Fame inducted five members last Saturday evening in a ceremony held at the Macon County High indoor sports complex.

Of those five individuals, four were Macon County High School graduates, three of which played for the Macon County High School girls basketball program.

“Those three players were a big part of the Macon County basketball tradition,” said long-time Macon County High girls head basketball coach Gary Carter, who presented Alicia Cook Thompson for induction. “That’s the reason things (winning tradition) have kept going.

“You can see why we won. I tell people … you can’t win without good players. The thing they have … that have such a strong mentality, and you see where they are today (in their professional careers).”

Thompson was joined by former teammate, Kim Swindle Hale, and Dana Leath Willis, who graduated one year prior to Thompson and Hale entering high school.

Thompson and Hale played from 1992-96, with that duo helping the program reach the Class AA State Tournament in 1994.

Thompson — who scored more than 1,000 points — was selected as the district’s most valuable player as a senior in addition to earning all-midstate honors.

Hale — was presented for induction by her father, David Swindle — was an all-district honoree on the hardwood but also excelled as a track and field athlete, finishing third in the state in the high jump.

Willis — who also played volleyball at MCHS — scored more than 1,000 points during her basketball career, which spanned from 1988-92. She was the two-time Vol State Conference Most Valuable Player, three-time all-district selection and a four-time all-region honoree before playing for four years at Cumberland University for head coach Mitch Walters, who presented Willis for induction on Saturday.

Former Macon County High football standout Jamie Fitzpatrick was also inducted.

Fitzpatrick — who played from 1992-95 — was the Region 5-3A Defensive Player of the Year in 1995, a first-team all-midstate selection and helped the program to the playoffs that fall. Fitzpatrick — who was presented for induction by former Tiger football coach Jon Offutt — also played baseball at MCHS and continued his football career as a walk-on at Tennessee Tech University.

Long-time radio personality Bill Speck was another inductee.

Speck — who was presented for induction by his granddaughter, Brooke Collins — broadcasted a variety of sporting events from 1960-2001 involving the Macon County Junior High, Macon County High School and Red Boiling Springs athletic programs.

He also coached Little League baseball in Lafayette for eight years.

The ceremony was last held in 2019, as last year’s induction ceremony was not held due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

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