October 13, 2015
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|Lawrenceville High School Sports Hall of Fame|
Five individuals, three teams to be inducted
LAWRENCEVILLE - Five individuals and three teams will be inducted into the Lawrenceville High School Sports Hall of Fame, when the organization holds its 10th annual ceremony.
Two of the five new inductees - Lynn Gray and Larry Lockhart - both played and coached for the Indians. Former players Larry Johnson and Ryan Kull will also be inducted as will Paul Restivo, who had a highly successful stint as the Indians' football coach in the mid-1960s.
Lawrenceville wrestling teams that registered back-to-back runnerup finishes in the state tournament in 1939 and 1940 will be honored. So will the 1969 baseball team that, according to the Illinois High School Association, recorded the school's first regional title.
The ceremony is scheduled for Sept. 21 at Lawrenceville High School. The evening will kick off with a social hour at 6 p.m., followed by the program at 7 p.m. A golf outing to raise funds for the hall of fame will take place at Lawrence County Country Club earlier in the day.
Gray, who graduated in 1966, was a standout football and baseball player for the Indians before playing baseball at Indiana State University.
After playing in the minor leagues, Gray served as an instructor at the Kansas City Royals Baseball Academy in Florida. Later he was the head golf and baseball coach at Lawrenceville High School, and was an assistant in the basketball program.
Johnson, a 1967 graduate, was a four-time wrestling letterman for the Indians, while winning three letters each in football and baseball.
Johnson was the honorary captain of the All-North Egypt Conference defensive football team as a senior, when he averaged 10 tackles a game and intercepted five passes.
Kull set a number of school records while earning 16 varsity letters at LHS - four each in football, basketball, baseball and track.
A 2004 LHS graduate, Kull is the school's single-game passing leader in football, having piled up 343 yards in a game, including a school-record 97-yard touchdown pass. He holds the LHS record in the 200-meter dash (22.8 seconds) and had a career batting average of .514 in baseball while stealing 85 of 86 bases in his career. He was a three-year starter for LHS basketball teams, and was a multiple-time all-conference selection in football, basketball and baseball.
Lockhart, a 1966 graduate won three letters each in football, baseball and track.
After earning All-NEC honors in football, he continued his career at the University of Evansville, where he was a three-year starter.
He later joined the coaching ranks, first at Mount Carmel and later at LHS. He guided the Golden Aces baseball teams to two state runnerup finishes and took the football team to seven North Egypt Conference titles and an appearance in the state semifinals.
Restivo compiled a 33-12 record as the Indians' football coach starting in 1963.
Lawrenceville gradually improved during Restivo's tenure and finished 7-1 in both 1967 and 1968, his final two seasons.
Prior to coming to Lawrenceville, Restivo spent six seasons coaching in Du Quoin. After coaching the Indians, Restivo took over the coaching reins at Herrin, and guided the Tigers to an undefeated record in 1972.
Lawrenceville had one of the premier wrestling programs in Illinois in the sports infancy, under legendary coach Robert Emmons.
Maywood Proviso nipped the Indians for the state championship in both 1939 (15-14) and 1940 (22-20).
The Indians fielded a pair of state champions in 1939, as Jack Cooper won at 105 pounds while Robert Strange was the best at 115. Also, Bill Hinton was second at 135 pounds.
Cooper won again in 1940 at 95 pounds, while Strange repeated at 115. Additionally Jack Snyder was the 145-pound state champion while Richard Kelly placed third at 105.
The Indians' 1969 baseball team may be the best in school history.
Coached by Ron Felling, the team compiled a 12-1 record, with the only loss coming to Du Quoin, 6-3, in the sectional.
Lawrenceville was undefeated on the way to winning district and regional championships.
Team members included Doug Dennis, Roger Kirkwood, Dave Summers, Butch Wolfe, Mike Burson, Dennis Shidler, Bob Gher, Frank Johnson, Truman Keyes, Jeff Knoerr, Chester Lewis, Larry Whitmer, Marty Bootman and Andy Warner. Ed Fitch was the assistant coach and the manager was Frank Kitchell.
LHS Sports Hall of Fame Inductees
Marion "Champ" Cole
Paul 'Tut' Jones
1955 football team
1982 basketball team
Dr. Bob Kirkwood
1983 basketball team
John "Jack" Snyder
George "Red" Stevenson
Paul "Lefty" Weger
1972 basketball team
1974 basketball team
1929 football team
Don "Bud" Heath
1965-66 basketball team
1966-67 basketball team
Robert K. Gosnell
1947-48 basketball team
1967 football team
1968 football team
1969 football team
Eulice V. "Curly Halt"
1939 wrestling team
1940 wrestling team
1969 baseball team