Ex-Falcons visiting for 'conversation'

Ex-Falcons visiting for 'conversation'

May 22nd, 2013 by Staff Reports in Sports

A group of former Atlanta Falcons stars and coach Leeman Bennett will be in Chattanooga on Thursday for dinner and "Locker Room Conversation" at Blue Water Grill. William Andrews, Bobby Butler, Billy "White Shoes" Johnson and Gerald Riggs Sr. will join linebacker Buddy Curry to help raise money for Curry's "Kids and Pros" organization that provides youth football camp opportunities throughout the South, including Chattanooga. The cost for the 6-9 p.m. event is $75. After dinner the old pros will swap stories and take time for autographs and photos with fans, according to Joe Smith, one of the local organizers. "It's going to be a very entertaining evening," Smith said, adding that reservations are not necessary.

Deaths

• The funeral service for longtime Soddy-Daisy assistant softball coach Lamar Lasley is set for 1 p.m. Thursday at Middle Valley Baptist Church. Family visitation is 2-8 p.m. today at the church and one hour before the funeral service. Lasley, who has helped with the Lady Trojans the past 16 years and also at Loftis Middle and other schools and with summer teams throughout the years, died Monday at age 60. The family asks that memorial contributions be made to the SDHS and Loftis softball teams.

• Tommy Runyon, the Central High School head football coach from 1971 to '76 between stints as an assistant at Red Bank, died Sunday at age 72 and will be buried today at Hamilton Memorial Gardens. A service is set for 11 a.m., but there is no visitation. Runyon played football at Marion County High School and Georgia and began his coaching career at Sequatchie County in 1964. He was an assistant principal at Ooltewah and then Red Bank from 1986 until '95. "Tommy Runyon was one of the most inspirational men in my life, and he'll be sorely missed," said Alan Pressley, a Central team captain in '76.

Baseball

• Former Red Bank High School pitcher Hunter Adkins finished his Middle Tennessee State baseball career last Saturday when he allowed only two runs and six hits in his 6 1/3 innings in a game Western Kentucky won 3-2 in the ninth. Adkins led the Blue Raiders (28-28) with 87 2/3 innings and the Sun Belt Conference with seven pickoffs; he wound up 5-5 with a 4.31 earned run average.

Basketball

• Just-graduated Ooltewah High School guard Antonio Jackson has committed to continue his basketball career at NCAA Division III member Maryville College. The 6-foot-tall three-year starter for the Owls and coach Jesse Nayadley was a third-team Best of Preps selection as a senior and was picked for the upcoming Tennessee-vs.-Georgia all-star game. His Ooltewah career included 915 points, 480 assists, 315 steals and a 2012 state-tournament appearance. He played AAU basketball for coach Paul Gaffney. "Antonio is a jet quick point guard with great floor vision," longtime Maryville coach Randy Lambert said. "He comes to us from an outstanding high school program. He may not be one of the biggest players on the floor, but he certainly has a big impact on any game that he plays. His outstanding character and leadership ability make him a great fit for our program."

Golf

• Tuesday in the Georgia Senior Women's Match Play golf tournament at Sunset Hills Country Club in Carrollton, Chatsworth's Sue King lost on the second extra hole to top-seeded Ellen Connors of Sharpsburg in Flight 1. Margaret Padgett of Calhoun lost 8 and 6 to Carrollton's Dale Perry in Flight 4, where Newnan's Bunny Guy edged Cohutta's Ysleta Morgan 1 up in a consolation match. Sissi Gann of Kathleen defeated Resaca's Rochelle Weaver 2 up in a Flight 1 consolation.

Tennis

• Dalton State College tennis coaches Michel Bates and Zach Rogers recently added a second recruit from Bogota, Colombia, by way of another NAIA school. The latest one is Juan Pablo Arguella, transferring from William Carey University in Hattiesburg, Miss., which was ranked as high as fourth in the NAIA this past season. "I am really happy to be a part of the Dalton State tennis team, and I am looking forward to the challenges," said Arguella, a compatriot and friend of previous Roadrunners signee Diana Narino from Reinhardt University. He will have two years of eligibility left. "Any time you can bring in an experienced player from a nationally ranked program, you feel fortunate," Rogers said.