George Whitfield, who won five state titles, recently hosted his 50th annual baseball clinic and his 37th annual Hall of Fame induction ceremony.
The one-day clinic took place on Saturday from 9:30 a.m. to 5:25 p.m. at Wayne Community College and it was open to all Wayne County high school baseball players.
During the clinic, the high school baseball players received instruction on how to field, catch, pitch, bat and run the bases from the baseball coaches from and around Wayne County.
The baseball coaches at this year’s clinic included Wayne Country Day High School head coach Adam Pate, University of Mount Olive head coach Rob Watt, Barton College head coach Keith Gorman, North Carolina Wesleyan College head coach Greg Clifton and Lenoir Community College head coach Gary Smith.
Also at the clinic was Paul Faulk, a major league scout for the San Francisco Giants, and Johnny Narron, the Milwaukee Brewers hitting coach from 2012-2014.
The night before the clinic, Whitfield held his 37th annual Hall of Fame induction ceremony dinner, which took place at 6 p.m., Jan. 13, at First Pentecostal Holiness Church.
Whitfield said he started his hall of fame 13 years after the start of his baseball clinic as a way to bring together and honor some of the best athletes he met throughout his career.
“We started off (the clinic) in 1972, and then 1985 was our first hall of fame class,” Whitfield said. “I just had a brainstorm in the shower one morning, and I thought I’ve met a lot of great people in the sports world, and I like to bring them down to Richmond county and then later to Goldsboro, and so I did.”
Since the start of his hall of fame in 1985, Whitfield held the ceremony and clinic every year except for 2021, when it was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
However, he still selected a hall-of-fame class that year, and they were honored at the 2022 hall-of-fame ceremony.
At this year’s ceremony, Whitfield announced 30 new members who joined the other 582 members in the George Whitfield Hall of Fame, bringing the membership total up to 612 members.
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This year’s class includes.
• Snow Brenner Davis — A five-sport athlete at High Point Central who was the first female to play in a North Carolina High School Football game and the kicker of the game-winning field goal in the regional championship game for High Point Central in 1996.
• Francis Combs — A four-sport athlete at Perquimans High School who played on the third place N.C. State College World Series team in 1968, and played for the New York Yankees minor league teams for three years.
• Pat Watkins — An all-conference football and baseball player at Garner High School who was a first-Team All-Conference player in 1993 for East Carolina University, a first-round draft pick by the Cincinnati Reds in 1993, and a professional baseball player for 10 years. His time in professional baseball included a stint with the Chicago Cubs.
• Clay Jordan — A four-year starting quarterback for West Craven High School, and later the head coach of West Craven High School for 41 years, where he won a state championship, 14 conference titles, and made 20 playoff appearances. The West Craven High School football stadium was named after him in 2008.
• Tom Marsh — A New Bern high school football player and two-time conference wrestling champion. Marsh wrestled for East Carolina University and was a head wrestling coach at New Bern High from 1986-2005, where he held a 324-72-1 record, won 15 regular-season conference championships and 14 conference tournament championships.
• Danny Anderson — A Hunter Huss High School basketball four-year starter who earned conference player of the year, scored over 1,000 career points, and earned all-district honors twice. He was also a head basketball coach for 40 years and became the winningest high school coach in N.C. History with 708 wins. As a head coach, he also won three regional championships, 16 regular season conference championships, and 12 conference tournament championships.
• Anthony Barbour — A track and football athlete at Garner High School, Barbour was a part of the 4A state championship-winning football team in 1987, and he set the national single-season high school football rushing yards record with 5,806 yards. In college, Barbour played for N.C. State, where he earned all-ACC honors and rushed for 2,575 yards (sixth most in school history).
• Ronnie Shavlik — An N.C. State basketball player who led the Wolfpack to two NCAA tournament appearances, earned all-American honors twice and all-ACC honors three times. He was also named ACC player of the Year in 1956 and is the second-highest scorer in N.C. State history with 1,761 points. Shavlik also played in the NBA for three seasons with the New York Knicks.
• Shavlik Randolph — The grandson of Ronnie Shavlik, and a former college basketball player for Duke University, where he won three regular-season ACC titles, three ACC tournaments, an NCAA Regional Championship and averaged more than 18 points per game during his final two seasons. He played professional basketball for 17 years, including nine years in the NBA.
• Beth Miller — A tennis and basketball player for South Rowan High School, Miller was the head volleyball coach at the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill from 1975-1983, where she won four ACC Tournament championships and made five NCAA tournament appearances. Miller later was the head softball coach at UNC-Chapel Hill from 1978-1979 and a senior athletic administrator at UNC-Chapel Hill from 1985-2015.