There is no sports history class at Churchill County High School.
But there should be.
More specifically, the past of Greenwave athletics needs to be brought back to its current study body, either through textbooks or lectures. However, for one weekend, this year’s student population will get a glimpse of Fallon history that spans nearly a decade.
The Greenwave Hall of Fame, believe it or not, is real. The Class of 2017, also known as the First Wave, will be inducted Saturday night at the Elmo Dericco Gymnasium in front of 400 family, friends and other members of the community. Tonight, the inductees will be introduced before the homecoming game against Elko.
“I always thought without a Hall of Fame or recognition to the past, the kids didn’t understand the past and who laid the foundation,” Greenwave Hall of Fame President Paul Orong said.
This year’s class is big. The ceremony will be epic and surreal. And it’s been long overdue to honor this class of 35 outstanding inductees, which includes an All-American, Olympian and many state champions.
It’s also been a history lesson in the making for this generation of Greenwave student-athletes and coaches.
“They are going to learn there were many before them who put in the effort to excel in the classroom and the sports venues, carrying many of them to the college ranks and pros,” Greenwave Hall of Fame Treasurer John Dirickson said. “For the majority, high school sports is the peak of their athletic careers. The opportunity to be a teammate, learn the advanced concepts of a sport, practice and pull together to win is a great lesson.”
Until the Hall of Fame officially inducts its class this weekend, high school athletes and coaches haven’t been recognized except for two football jerseys being retired and track school records put on display inside the gymnasium. The Hall of Fame was created and has pushed past the milestones that other attempts failed to reach.
For football coach Brooke Hill, who played in the 1980s, this weekend is the opportune time to inform the community, especially the students.
“There’s no really way to recognize it,” Hill said about the accomplishments. “This would be good for them to know the history of their school athletically.”
Since Orong assembled his dream team of volunteers last spring, the committee has met monthly, created bylaws, nomination criteria and awareness about honoring those who turned Fallon athletics into the successful program it is today. The Hall of Fame is the bridge between the past and present.
“That’s why it’s so important to me to have this in Fallon,” said Orong, who was born and raised in California before moving to Fallon 20 years ago. “That’s been one of my biggest things: bringing tradition to Fallon and letting these kids know. Let the community remember.”
And this weekend will be one to never forget.
Congrats to this year’s induction class on becoming the First Wave.
Thomas Ranson can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.