PRC induct Lumpkin, Hayden, Coach Lee, 61-62 basketball team into HOF

Published 7:00 am Friday, October 7, 2016

Seth Hayden

Seth Hayden celebrates being inducted into the PRC Hall of Fame with one of his daughters.

Before Pearl River Central High School’s football game last week, the school inducted former Blue Devil athletes Richelle Lumpkin and Seth Hayden, a coach, Marty Lee and the 1961-62 Lady Devil Basketball team into the Blue Devils Athletic Hall of Fame.

Lumpkin, County Court Judge of Pearl River County and lifelong resident of the county, was inducted into the Blue Devil Hall of Fame for achievements throughout her basketball career at PRC, which started when she entered the 7th grade. It took Lumpkin little time to fall in love with the sport, and early in her career, she was selected as the Most Outstanding Player on the freshmen team. Toward the end of that season, Lumpkin moved up to the varsity team because of her high-caliber talent on the court.

“I have always had a passion for basketball and I don’t think that will ever change,” Lumpkin said. “When I heard the news that I was going to be inducted into PRC’s Hall of Fame, it caught me by surprise. There are a lot of great athletes that came before and after me, so for them to think of me is a great honor.”

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In her sophomore, junior and senior seasons, Lumpkin was selected as the team’s Most Valuable Player along with other recognitions such as the Best Offensive Player and Best Rebounder. In each of those three years, Lumpkin also was selected to the All-District and All Deep South Conference teams.

In her senior season, Lumpkin averaged a double-double with 19 points and 10 rebounds per game as well as eclipsing the 1,000-point scoring mark.

Lumpkin not only played basketball at PRC, she also lettered in softball and track.

“Just being a Blue Devil in itself is something I truly value, and I’m very humbled to receive this honor,” Lumpkin said. “The purpose in all of our lives is to make a difference in the world we live in. There is so much bad in this world, so everyone should strive to leave a positive legacy to help future generations.”

Seth Hayden, currently a PRC football coach, was also inducted into the Blue Devil Athletic Hall of Fame for his vast achievements as a Blue Devil athlete in multiple sports, including football, baseball, track and power lifting.

During his time playing football for PRC, Hayden received a varsity letter all four years, rushed for over 4,500 yards and scored 63 touchdowns. He was selected as the Division 7-4A Most Valuable Offensive Back his junior year and after that, received the Overall Most Valuable Player Award for Division 7-4A during his senior season. To go along with his last season at PRC, he was also selected to play in the Bernard Blackwell All-Star Game and was selected to the Mississippi All-State First Team.

“Seth is a great guy,” PRC Head Football Coach Larry Dolan said. “I used to coach against him when he was playing for PRC and he was one of the best running backs in Mississippi and deserves this honor. He coaches the same way he plays and is a great asset to the team.”

Outside of football, Hayden won the Division 7-4A weightlifting championship for the 181-pound weight class and was a state finalist in the 200-meter sprint for track.

After graduating from PRC in 2005, Hayden took his football talents to Pearl River Community College, where he received the Dobie Holden Scholarship. Also, in his two-year career at PRCC, he was voted a preseason All-American, won a Junior College State Championship each year and is currently ranked ninth on the college’s all-time rushing list.

The third inductee into the Blue Devil Athletic Hall of Fame is Marty Lee, current PRC track coach, for his successful coaching career that continues to this day.

Lee graduated from PRC in 1977 and during his time at the school, he participated in football, basketball, baseball and track. However, for Lee, he knew that life would take him back to the school he loved when he returned to begin his coaching career at PRC in 1982.

“I have always seen this place as my home. Everybody seems like family here and it’s a great place to be a part of,” Lee said.

Throughout Lee’s coaching career at PRC, he has been the head coach of every sport he played when he attended the school and is proud of one rare statistic he holds.

“Out of my 34 years of coaching, I never missed a single game. The Lord has blessed me with an amazing job of coaching at a place I love, and I cannot thank Him and my family for sticking with me throughout all these years,” Lee said.

Lee’s family was in attendance during his induction into the Hall of Fame at Kenneth L. Hendrix Memorial Stadium, which is something he said, “was real special to me. To have all of my family there to see me get inducted meant the world to me.”

During the event on Friday, the 1961-62 Lady Devil Basketball team was also inducted into the Blue Devil Athletic Hall of Fame. It finished its season with an astounding record of 32-2. Coached by Adrain Pate Lumpkin, its final loss occurred in the State Championship game in which it finished its season as State Runner-Ups.

The players present at the event were Betty Hill Sones, Margaret Bounds Stewart, Melba Jane Elkins, Lora Fleming, Katie Cooper Farmer, Lana Monroe Palmer, Bety Ruth Penton Farmer and Evelyn Lee.

The Hall of Fame Class of 2016 will forever be remembered and represent the school’s slogan, “Once a Blue Devil, Always A Blue Devil.”

Richelle Lumpkin shares this memorable moment with friends and family that are spectating the event.

Richelle Lumpkin shares this memorable moment with friends and family that are spectating the event.

Marty Lee glances at the Blue Devil crowd filled with family and friends who came to congratulate him and his induction into the Hall of Fame.

Marty Lee glances at the Blue Devil crowd filled with family and friends who came to congratulate him and his induction into the Hall of Fame.