Remember When? —Ex-Devilette Tai Cawthon earns NAIA All-America honors

Remember When? —Ex-Devilette Tai Cawthon earns NAIA All-America honors
Remember when takes a look back at the local stories from the files of The Messenger that took place 1, 5, 10, 20 and 30 years ago.
30 Years Ago
Apr. 26 — Tom Hancock was elevated to the position of head men’s basketball coach at UT Martin by athletics director Ray Mears. The 38-year-old Hancock replaced Art Tolis, who resigned almost immediately after being acquitted of shoplifting at a Fulton convenience store. Tolis said he “did not get the university support” he thought he should’ve and gave up his job after the seven-month ordeal. Hancock had been an assistant coach under Tolis.
May 1 — The Union City girls placed fourth and the Tornado boys fifth in the fifth annual Rotary Relays at War Memorial Stadium’s Dave Shatz Track. Tammy Critchfield led the Lady Twister effort by winning the 110 low hurdles. Amy Jackson was second in the discus, Kathy Barbee runnerup in the shot pot, Gigi Grasfeder fourth and Cathy James fifth in the mile run for the locals. On the boys’ side, Larry Hedrick placed No. 2 in the discus, while Andy Edgin was third and Skipper White fifth in the pole vault. Odie Bass came in fourth in the 440 dash. Obion Central’s Stephanie Isbell carried the banner for her school with a second-place showing in the 110 low hurdles and a third-place finish in the high jump.
20 Years Ago
Apr. 29 — Both Union City tennis teams claimed their sixth consecutive District 26 championships under the direction of Phil Wesner. Melanie Kemp won the singles title, and Jeanna Reeder and Kim Gray teamed for the doubles crown for the Lady Tornadoes. Melinda Brown, Angie Fox and Jennifer Gillett were also solid contributors to the championship squad. Ben Escarcega claimed the singles title for the UC boys, with teammates Cesar Faranelli and Brad Thompson combining for the doubles championship. Todd McMinn, Kevin Little and Chad Hailey completed a strong Twister roster.
May 1 — South Fulton stole an incredible 37 bases in whipping Big Sandy 16-1 and 18-5 in prep softball. Kenya Wiley swiped five bags in the opener for David Brewer’s Red Devilettes, who got three hits apiece from Jill Hazlewood, Stacy Wright and Jennifer Bunton in Game 1. Hazlewood popped an inside-the-park home run and a triple in the nightcap.
10 Years Ago
Apr. 26 — Former South Fulton High School standout Tai Cawthon was named a third-team NAIA All-American after her sophomore season at Lambuth University. The six-footer averaged 14 points in a reserve role for the Lady Eagles and was part of a team that made the program’s second straight appearance in the national tournament. Cawthon scored more than 1,400 points during her Devilette prep career, helping SF to an 82-30 record during that time.
Apr. 29 — Union City’s Jeremy McCadney was named the Most Valuable Field Event Athlete in the 25th annual Rotary Relays. McCadney won the long jump, was second in the triple jump and part of two relay teams that placed in the Top 5 in respective events. He helped the Tornado boys place fourth in the meet. UC also got a second-place showing in the shot put from Derek Belew and a third-place finish in the high jump by Seth Ursery.
5 Years Ago
Apr. 27 — New Obion County Central head football coach Jason Driggers announced the hiring of three assistants to complete his first Rebel staff. Eric Knott, John Gurschick and Mark Rich were all brought aboard to aid Driggers, who was hired at OCCHS after a successful tenure as an assistant at Jackson South Side. Knott had spent the previous three years with Kevin Ward at Camden and also had experience under Don Coady at Westview. Gurschick and Rich joined the Rebel ranks after time at West Carroll.
May 1 — Union City’s DeBrisha Robinson and Jeremy Simpson were named winners of The Messenger-Obion County Prep Player of the Year award for basketball. Robinson finished her Lady Tornado career as the No. 2 scorer all-time in the five-on-five era and was headed to Columbia State Community College after signing a scholarship. Simpson averaged in double figures and was UC’s top defender while helping the Twisters to their third straight 30-win season.
1 Year Ago
Apr. 29 — Four Obion County Central seniors were honored in ceremonies prior to the Lady Rebels’ 12-2 softball victory over Gibson County. Leann Staser, Meaghen Strayhorn, Maddi Bell and Mandi McDaniel were all recognized, then helped Central pound GC for its 21st victory. Staser went 3-for-4 in the rout, while Strayhorn was the winning pitcher and knocked in two runs.
May 2 — Matthew Keathley’s two-out, two-run double in the bottom of the seventh gave Union City a thrilling 6-5 victory over Dyersburg. Keathley’s poke capped a four-run UC rally that also included a two-run single by Branson Sherwood. The Tornadoes then beat a second District 13AA team in a 9-7 triumph over Westview. Cameron Powers had three hits in four trips, as did Caleb Long. Brandon Griffin contributed two hits and a pair of RBIs. Published in The Messenger 4.26.12

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