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WINSTON-SALEM, NORTH CAROLINA – The fifth class of the North Carolina High School

Track & Field and Cross Country Hall of Fame will honor athletes, coaches and officials who have

significantly impacted the sports on the high school level and beyond.

Elected to the fifth class: Two-time Olympic bronze medalist, World Indoor Championship bronze

medalist and 4-time U.S. champion, Melissa Morrison Howard (A.L. Brown High, Kannapolis);

Two-time Olympian, World Outdoor Champion, World Indoor bronze medalist and 3-time U.S.

champion, Jesse Williams (Broughton High, Raleigh); 4-time All-American and 8-time national

champion, Wesley Frazier (Ravenscroft School, Raleigh); 2-time All-American and 5-time national

champion, Ryen Frazier (Ravenscroft School, Raleigh); 3-time national champion, 4-time All-

American and 2-time 4A state meet MVP, Kim Jones (Grimsley, Greensboro); 7-time state champion

and three-sport star, Bob Gantt (Durham High), the only person to sweep the shot put and discus

three straight years (1938-1940) and who also starred in three sports at Duke; and 9-time state

champion, Steve Clay (Jordan-Sellars, Burlington), the most decorated athlete in the NCHSAC, the

association for African American schools before integration.

Also inducted were coaches, Mike Esposito (Mount Tabor High, Winston-Salem), who coached 11

state championship teams, 4 individual national champions and was an 8-time North Carolina Coach

of the Year; Ben Hovis (Providence Day, Charlotte), who founded and has led

Providence Day to 34 state titles (17 in cross country and 17 in track), while also coaching 8

individual cross country state champions and numerous individual state track champions; Jeff George

(, media personality, announcer, coach, meet director, who promoted

the sport in North Carolina through ncrunners, created meets for statewide exposure, and has helped

take cross country and track in North Carolina to another level because of his passion for the sport.

A statewide committee of 22 track and field and cross country coaches, officials and media

representatives who cover the sport extensively nominated and elected the class.

The induction ceremony will be Feb. 3, 2024, in Winston-Salem during the Mondo Elite High School

Invitational at the JDL Fast Track, which will house the Hall of Fame. Each elected class has been

honored at the meet, which is the premier indoor meet in North Carolina each season.

“High school track and field has existed in North Carolina for more than 100 years, with the first

outdoor state championship held in 1913, the first indoor track meet held in 1922, and the first high

school cross country meet held in 1929, and North Carolinas has a strong history of national success,

dating to the 1930s when High Point High competed at cross country nationals in New Jersey. It is our

goal to honor those who have helped make this sport so great in our state, and these first five classes

are a great start at letting people know how much talent has come through North Carolina.” Brett

Honeycutt, N.C. High School Track & Field and Cross Country Hall of Fame Founder.


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