Athletic Hall Of Fame class is a nod to history

 

Randy Summers, Albert Jeffcoat and Brett Price were inducted into the Batesburg-Leesville Athletic Hall of Fame during a halftime ceremony Friday night, Oct. 4 during the game with Abbeville. (Photo courtesy of Lexington Three Schools)

 

The Batesburg-Leesville Athletic Hall of Fame grew by three new members Friday night, Oct. 4, as Albert Jeffcoat, Brett Price and Randy Summers were inducted during halftime of the home game against Abbeville.  These inductions will raise the total of Hall of Famers to 48.

ALBERT JEFFCOAT

Albert Jeffcoat is the first inductee to attend Hampton High School in Leesville. He is a 1950 graduate of Twin-City High School, where he was a star on the diamond.

He attended South Carolina State College to play baseball, but the program was disbanded prior to the 1951 season due to financial issues. He then would go on to the Negro Leagues.

From 1952-56, Jeffcoat would play for the Indianapolis Clowns during the season and would barnstorm with the New York Black Yankees. He was a part of two Negro American League Championships with the Clowns in 1952 and 1954 as a pitcher.

Jeffcoat’s only professional home run was an inside-the-park home run at Wrigley Field against the Chicago American Giants.  Jeffcoat was briefly a teammate of baseball great Henry “Hank” Aaron in 1952 with Indianapolis and also was a teammate with the first female professional baseball player, Toni Stone in 1953 with the Clowns.  Jeffcoat is retired and lives in Batesburg-Leesville.

BRETT PRICE

Brett Price is a 1998 graduate of Batesburg-Leesville, where he starred in baseball and football.  He played two years of varsity football for B-L with the Panthers going 19-6 overall.  He served as the starting quarterback in 1997 and set a school record with 360 yards passing in a game.

However, he would star on the baseball diamond, where he was a three-year starter for head coach Phil Strickland. He would be a three time all-state and all-region selection in the outfield and pitcher from 1996-98 as he helped B-L to advance to the Class AA Upper State Championship game in 1996 and the Lower State Championship game in 1998.  Both seasons B-L was the region champion.

During his career, Price recorded four no-hitters while striking out 426 batters in his career. Following high school, he attended the University of South Carolina, where he played three seasons for coach Ray Tanner. From 1999-2001 he compiled a record of 10-3 and was selected in the 14th round of the 2001 Major League Baseball draft by the Oakland A’s.

Price would go on to play five seasons of minor league baseball for the A’s and the Washington Nationals organizations, compiling a record of 27-25 with an ERA of 3.58 during his career. During those four seasons he struck out 424 batters in 393 innings of work.

Price returned home to Batesburg-Leesville and has served as an assistant coach for the B-L varsity baseball team as well as coaching youth baseball for his sons Cole and Nate.

RANDY SUMMERS

Randy Summers is a 1971 graduate of Batesburg-Leesville, where he starred in football and track and field. Summers began his high school career at Twin-City High School before coming over to B-L during integration.

He was the first African-American letterman in B-L history. In football, Summers played one season at Twin-City for head coach Leon Bennett before starring for B-L during his junior and senior seasons. In two years as a starter, Summers was chosen all-conference both seasons for running back and defensive back and led the team in touchdowns both seasons with 14 and 17 respectively.

During 1969-70, B-L High compiled a record of 17-4.  On three occasions in his career, Summers scored four touchdowns in a game, including his final game at Pageland in 1970.  In that game, Summers scored four times in four different ways: on a run, a reception, a punt return and an interception return.  The interception return covered 102 yards and remains the longest play in school history.

In track, Summers competed in the 100-yard and 220-yard dashes as well as the 4×100 relay.

Following high school Summers would attend Wake Forest University, where he played freshman football before having to give up the game due to medical reasons. Summers later served nine years in the United States Marine Corps and is now retired and lives just outside of Washington, D.C. in Clinton, Md.

Story by Jay Hendrix / Posted October 5, 2019