York Hall of Fame inductees to be honored Friday

genegraham@comporium.netOctober 15, 2013 

— Six former high school athletes will be inducted into the York school district Athletic Hall of Fame during halftime ceremonies at Friday’s football game.

“We look forward to honoring our former athletes every two years,” said athletic director Steve Boyd. “We have another outstanding group of athletes to be inducted Friday night at the YCHS stadium.”

Friday’s induction into the hall of fame will include former York Comprehensive High School basketball player Ivory Latta and football and track athlete Josh Davis, each of whom had their jerseys retired; Steve Bolin and David Branch, who had record-setting performances in track and cross country; Grady Lowry, a former athlete at Jefferson High School; and Danny Turner, a former athlete at Hickory Grove High School.

Latta, who played for the Lady Cougar basketball team from seventh grade through her senior year, became the career-scoring leader for girls and boys in high school basketball in South Carolina.

Latta admits that her most memorable basketball game for the Lady Cougars was when she scored 70 points in a playoff game in the “dome” her senior year. The 5-foot, 6-iinch bundle of energy converted 14 three-pointers, dished out 12 assists and hauled in 14 rebounds. She made 15 of 15 free throws.

A McDonald’s All-American in high school, Latta earned All-America status at UNC-Chapel Hill, where she became a national icon and has been hired as assistant coach with the Lady Tar Heels. She completed her first season with the Washington Mystics of the WNBA and was selected to the WNBA All-Star game.

Davis had a celebrated Cougar football career, earning player of the year and all-region three years. He was a top pass receivers in the Palmetto State and played in the North Carolina-South Carolina Shrine Bowl Classic,

In addition, Davis was the state 100-meter champion as a member of the YCHS track team and was second placed in the 200 meter in upper state champion competition.

He gained national attention while playing wide receiver for Marshall University, breaking the NCAA record for pass receptions by a freshman. His name is in the record books as finishing second in NCAA career receptions.

Davis played wide receiver and returned punts for the NFL Miami Dolphins, New Orleans Saints, Minnesota Vikings and Carolina Panthers.

Bolin was state champion in the mile run and Peach Blossom Conference champ in the mile and half-mile in 1970. He was the first cross country state champion in all classifications in 1970.

Bolin repeated as state champ in cross country and Peach Blossom champ in the mile run in 1971. He was unbeaten in cross country in 1970 and 1971. He won the Furman Invitational Cross Country Meet in 1971, placed fourth in the State Amateur Athletic Union and competed in the Junior Olympics.

Branch, a four-time all-state cross country runner, succeeded Bolin with a record-breaking career that included state champion in the mile run in 1973-74 and state champ in the 880-yard run in ’74.

His best high school times included 4:18.1 in the Volunteer Relays in Knoxville, Tenn., and 1:59.6 in the 880 in the 1974 state meet.

Branch made his presence felt in a huge way at Furman University, where he was All-Southern Conference in cross country in 1976 and Southern Conference champion in the 10,000 meter run at 29:54.4, a Furman record.

His success continued after college, earning road racing accolades throughout the U. S. He is a member of the York County Sports Hall of Fame.

Lowry left his impression on the athletic program at Jefferson High School. He was captain of the Blue Devils’ boys’ basketball team from 1958 to 1960, scoring more than 1,000 points during that span. Lowry was instrumental in the Blue Devils, winning three district championships.

He was captain of the Jefferson High football team in 1960, scoring 14 touchdowns. Lowry attended Claflin College on a football scholarship and was director of a middle school recreation program in Michigan.

Turner, a former athlete at Hickory Grove High School, still lives in Hickory Grove. His determination to raise his skill level on the basketball court earned the Cardinal standout a most improved award in the 1964 season.

With Turner contributing to the team’s success, the Cardinals were state runner-up in 1964 with a sparkling 19-4 record.

Turner made his presence felt his senior year at the Hickory Grove school, averaging 13 points and 13 rebounds for a state title-contending team. He is an active member of Mount Vernon United Methodist Church.

A drop-in reception will be held for the hall of fame inductees in the YCHS cafeteria from 6 to 7 p.m. Friday. “We encourage the community to go to the cafeteria and welcome the inductees,” Boyd said.

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