One could be forgiven for mistaking Friday’s reception at Smith-Cotton High School for a family reunion.
The induction of Ross Dey and the 1990-91 Lady Tigers Golf Team into the Smith-Cotton Athletic Hall of Fame attracted friends, alum and family to Sedalia in celebration of their achievements.
Friday’s was an impromptu family reunion for the Dey family, who represented the late Ross during the induction ceremony between Smith-Cotton girls and boys basketball games.
Ross’ father, Bill Dey, said he enjoyed seeing familiar faces at Smith-Cotton on Friday.
“It was good to see some people I hadn’t seen in a while,” Bill said. “They journeyed here to see Ross’ induction.”
Ross Dey died in 2009 of melanoma cancer. He graduated from Smith-Cotton in 1982 and has been inducted into the Missouri High School Baseball Coaches Association Hall of Fame, the Missouri Fast Pitch Hall of Fame and the Missouri Sports Hall of Fame.
Dey earned a bronze medal in 1993 at the U.S. Olympic Festival in St. Louis and a gold medal in 2002 at the Pan Am Qualifier in fast-pitch softball. He returned to Sedalia and taught social studies at Smith-Cotton and coached baseball. The Tigers won five conference championships and district titles in 1999 and 2004 with Dey at head coach.
Members of the 1990-91 Lady Tigers Golf team, Shannon Davis, Mendy Rinehart, Richelle Bond, Libby Howard and coach B.J. Curry were also inducted on Friday. Curry delivered a speech of Academy Award-like duration to illustrate the team’s accomplishments.
Curry said Friday’s reception was like another reason to assemble – homecoming.
“It’s been 25 years since these girls won,” Curry said. “A couple of them I haven’t seen for over 20 years. It’s like a homecoming. It’s pretty special.”
The Lady Tigers win the Missouri State Golf Tournament in 1991 with a record score of 697 and were the first team in state history to finish under 700. All five members of the team placed in the top 15 and earned All-State recognition.
Shannon Davis said Friday’s event gave her a chance to recollect some high school memories.
“There’s so much I remember, and then, reading through our books, there’s so much I don’t remember,” Davis said. “It’s been fun to connect with old friends we haven’t seen in a long time.”
Alex Agueros can be reached at 660-826-1000, ext. 1483 or on Twitter @abagueros2