Hall of Fame inducts six
Johnston County Schools photo
The Johnston County Schools Athletic Hall of Fame is housed in the school administration building on South Third Street in Smithfield.
PRINCETON — The Johnston County Athletic Hall of Fame welcomed six new members during a banquet on May 7 at Princeton High School.
This year’s inductees are D. Clay Best, Al Evans, Sarah Henry, Glen M. Hinnant, LuLong Ogburn Medlin and Rodney Ormond.
As a sports reporter for the News & Observer and Smithfield Herald, Best covered Johnston high school sports, including the state championship runs of the Clayton High School boys’ golf team in 2005, the Princeton High baseball team in 2007, Princeton High’s volleyball team in 2014, and the Princeton High softball team in 2015.
To cover high school playoffs involving Johnston teams, Best traveled from Cherokee (1A football playoffs) to Cape Hatteras (2A basketball and soccer playoffs) and all points in between.
Born Sept. 28, 1916, in Kenly, Evans went to school in his hometown, graduating from high school there and then attending Oak Ridge Military Academy. After leaving there, he began his baseball career in the semiprofessional Carolina Textile League in 1936 and 1937,
Evans went on to play for Major League Baseball’s Washington Senators and Boston Red Sox. He was a career .250 hitter through more than 700 games in the major leagues.
Henry is a 2010 graduate of West Johnston High. As a high school freshman swimmer in 2007, she was the 4A state champion in the 100-meter butterfly. As a junior, she was the state champion in the 500-meter freestyle, and as a senior in 2010, the Wildcats were conference champions, and she was the state champion in the 200 and 500 freestyle events.
Hinnant graduated Corinth-Holders High School in 1969 after a decorated athletic career. He played basketball for three years, leading the team in rebounding and scoring as it won a conference championship his senior year. He was even more special as a baseball player, playing varsity for four years and leading the team to three straight conference championships and three straight berths in the 1A state playoffs.
Medlin was born in Smithfield. Her high school basketball career began as a freshman in 1947. The coach, Luby Royal, decided to start her in the team’s game that season, and over the next four years, Medlin became a standout. That year she scored 250 points.
As a sophomore, Medlin scored 400 hundred points. In her junior year, she bagged 486 points, and she ended her high school career by scoring 718 points in her senior season.
LuLong became the all-time scoring leader in Johnston County with nearly 2,000 points. She went on to become Miss North Carolina in 1951 and was runner-up in the Miss America Pageant.
Born and raised in Princeton, Ormond attended Princeton when it was a K-12 school. In high school, he was a three-sport standout, with college recruitments in football, basketball and baseball. He was all-conference in baseball, football and basketball and was on the all-state baseball team his junior and senior years.
Ormond helped lead the Bulldogs to two state baseball championships, winning the Most Valuable Player Award. He earned the Bulldog Award his senior year, along with MVP awards in baseball and football. In 2009, Ormond was inducted into the Princeton High School Athletic Hall of Fame.
The Johnston County Athletic Hall of Fame display is located in the school system’s West Campus administration building at 211 Rose St. in Smithfield.
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