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Dacula Athletics Hall of Fame kickoff a success

The inaugural inductees into the Dacula Athletics Hall of Fame are shown at Sunday's induction ceremony.

The inaugural inductees into the Dacula Athletics Hall of Fame are shown at Sunday's induction ceremony.

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Dacula Athletics Hall of Fame inductees and siblings Eve (left) and Israel Machovec pose with Dacula principal Bryan Long (middle) at Sunday's induction ceremony. The Machovecs, honored for track and field, are part of the first 50 members of the high school's hall of fame.

A vision became reality Sunday afternoon for Dacula High School athletic supporters.

The Falcons officially launched the Dacula Athletics Hall of Fame in front of more than 400 former students, boosters and others in the community. The initial group of inductees featured 50 individuals and five teams — 1938, 1945 and 1979 boys basketball, 1954 girls basketball and 1993 wrestling. All of those teams won state championships.

The new hall of fame display is in the Falcons’ gym lobby. It features a large wood wall that showcases the plaques for each hall of famer. The display was open to the public and the inductees for the first time on Sunday.

Football players make up a large chunk of this year’s class, including multi-sport star Terry Harvey, a 1991 graduate who is already a member of the Gwinnett County Sports Hall of Fame. Allen “Buck” Abbott (Class of 1994), Cole Brodie (2006), Joe Ford (1967), David Irons (2000), Kenny Irons (2001), Jim Peevy (1991), Mark Peevy (1988), Des Williams (2003) and Jamey Wright (1988) also are inductees for their contributions in football.

The hall of famers being honored for basketball include Julian Archer (1945), Claude Bradberry (1948), Ernest Cain (1942), Ray Clark (1966), Roy Etheridge (1945), Andrew Franklin (1945), Johnny Hudlow (1966), Doug Mahaffey (1979, also a track and field nominee) and Marlin Wages (1945).

In addition to Mahaffey, the track and field selections were Owen Brooks (1937), Aimee Forbing (2000), Heidi Gholston (1999), Ashley Golden (1997), Emily King (2003), Amy Ledford (2001), Eve Machovec (2008), Israel Machovec (2006), Jennifer McCalla (1999), Whitney Nelson (1996), Christina Pelham (1993), Erica Penk (2007), Summer Puckett (2003), Michelle Rogers (2003), Danielle Seckinger (2002) and Marlo Tanner (1994).

The other selections for the 50 hall of famers include Abigail Alton (swimming, 2008), Travis Blackburn (baseball, 2007), Matt Carter (wrestling, 1997), Elizabeth Zientak Clarkson (golf/tennis, 2002), Kristin Hughes Croteau (softball, 1999), David Hudlow (wrestling, 1985), Frankie Miller (wrestling, 2008), Brittany Rogers (softball, 2004), Paul Stansbury (wrestling, 2002), Elizabeth Stowe (swimming, 2004), Jeremie Tice (baseball, 2005), Gaines Westmoreland (wrestling, 1996) and Shannon Wilkerson (baseball, 2006).

Longtime booster Dan Buchanan also is an all-sports inductee, while football/baseball coach D.I. “Red” Barron, the stadium’s namesake, also is a first-year selection.

While the first group voted in is large, the future inductions will be smaller groups. There is still a strong list of candidates.

“There are plenty of others on the (nominee) list,” said Karen, whose voting committee consisted of longtime Dacula supporters and residents.