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Fayetteville Sports Club announces class of 2022

Dwayne Allen, Francie Barragon, Leonard Sanders, Earl ‘Air’ Harvey, Horace Whitaker and Mabon Leslie ‘Beau’ Williford to be honored in March ceremony.


The Fayetteville Sports Club will hold a dual Hall of Fame ceremony this year for its classes of 2021 and 2022.

No ceremony was held in 2021 because of the COVID-19 pandemic although a class of honorees was selected and previously announced.

The club on Wednesday announced the class of 2022 and plans to honor all 11 inductees at this year’s banquet on March 30 at Highland Country Club.

The banquet is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. Tickets are $60 per person and can be purchased by emailing ashley@npfp.com or calling 910-323-9195.

Here’s a look at the newly-named class of 2022 and the previously announced class of 2021.

Class of 2022

Dwayne Allen

Allen played football and basketball for Terry Sanford High School and was a highly sought football recruit before choosing Clemson.

He earned the John Mackey Award while attending Clemson as the best tight end in the nation and was named a consensus All-American.

He skipped his senior year of eligibility and was drafted by the Indianapolis Colts in the third round of the 2012 draft. He played with the Colts, New England Patriots and Miami Dolphins, winning Super Bowl LIII with New England.

Francie Barragan

Barragan played on three state championship tennis teams at Terry Sanford High School and was ranked as high as No. 6 in the Southern Section and No. 90 nationally in USTA competition as a junior.

She played college tennis at North Carolina State and reached No. 1 in singles and doubles, helping the Wolfpack earn a berth in the NCAA tournament.

She returned to Fayetteville to coach at Methodist University, earning multiple regular season and conference tournament tennis titles. She is a member of the school’s athletic hall of fame. 

She served as director of tennis at MacGregor Downs Country Club in Cary, and last April was hired as USTA Southern Sectional tennis service representative for North Carolina. 

Leonard Sanders

Sanders, who attended St. Augustine and Fayetteville State University, was a trailblazer in the local African-American sports community. He was the first African-American program director hired by the Fayetteville Parks and Recreation Department. He spent 34 years with the department in various leadership roles before retiring in 1974. 

Among the youth programs he helped organize were multiple teams in baseball, football and softball.

He had close associations with a number of previous Hall of Fame inductees, including Doug Wilkerson, Arthur “Monk” Smith and Ike Walker.

Earl “Air” Harvey

Primarily a basketball player at Douglas Byrd High School, Harvey played just one season of varsity football for Hall of Fame head coach Bob Paroli. He would go on to play football at North Carolina Central, where he rewrote the school’s passing record book and earned the nickname “Air.”

From 1985-88 he was All-CIAA four times, and the first freshman to pass for over 3,000 yards in a season.

He set school, conference and NCAA Division II records for career passing completions, career passing yards, career total offense, consecutive games throwing a touchdown pass, most touchdowns responsible for and career touchdown passes.

He broke 15 Division II career records and held eight Division II single-season records.

Horace Whitaker 

Whitaker was a football standout, first at Seventy-First High School, and then one of the first players for the newly-created Douglas Byrd High School in the mid-1970s.

He led that first Byrd team to an 8-2 record and the school’s first conference football title.

As a senior, Whitaker rushed for 1,400 yards and made the East-West All-Star game. He was named the top player in the county as well as All-East. 

He was also a standout in basketball and baseball and was recruited to play football at N.C. State by Lou Holtz. 

After finishing college he entered the insurance business and became an accomplished pickleball player until his death in 2021.

Mabon Leslie “Beau” Williford

Williford became a boxer growing up in Fayetteville, earning a North Carolina Golden Gloves title and becoming National Amateur Champion in 1967.

He later sparred with Muhammad Ali and founded the Ragin’ Cajun Boxing Club in Lafayette, Louisiana, where he trained numerous state and regional Golden Gloves winners.

He also trained some top-rated pros, including women’s world featherweight champion Deidra Gogarty. Gogarty was the first woman appointed to the Louisiana Boxing Commission.

Class of 2021

Sheila Boles

Boles was a star athlete at Seventy-First High School who attended college at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington.

As a Seahawk, Boles was on the school’s first women’s basketball team, became the school’s first female scholarship athlete and was the team’s first most valuable player.

In 1989 she became the head coach of the varsity boys basketball team at Wilmington’s Hoggard High School, where she won multiple conference titles and had the school’s gym named in her honor.

Last year she received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the YWCA of the Lower Cape Fear.

Alex Gaines 

Gaines was a soccer star at Seventy-First High School. He’s best remembered for kicking the only field goal in the 1986 state 4-A championship game with West Charlotte, lifting Seventy-First to a 3-0 win at Loyd E. Auman Athletic Field. In soccer, he led the conference in scoring in 1986 with 55 goals.

Gaines went on to play soccer and track at UNC-Pembroke. He was all-conference four times and all-district three times in soccer. He set school records for most goals and points in a career. He was team Most Valuable Player in 1989 and 1990.

In track, he was all-conference and all-district twice in the javelin and helped the Braves to two conference and district titles.

He spent 20 years in the Air Force and earned a Bronze Star for actions in Operation Enduring Freedom in 2003. He was inducted into the UNC-Pembroke Athletic Hall of Fame in 2004. 

Ray McDougal

McDougal was a successful football and golf coach for the Broncos, working in a variety of roles for the school for 44 years.

He only had losing records in three of his first 10 seasons as football coach. He had back-to-back 7-3 records in 1975 and 1976. Three times he was named NAIA District 26 Coach of the Year and was the CIAA Coach of the Year in 1975. He had 17 all-conference players and nine NAIA District 26 All-Americans. 

It was in golf where McDougal made his greatest mark. His teams won 15 CIAA titles and six PGA National Minority/Division II championships.

His team’s second-place finish in the 2009 NCAA regional earned the Broncos a berth in the NCAA tournament, making it the first historically black college or university to compete in the NCAA finals in 35 years. 

In 2018, McDougal was inducted into the CIAA Hall of Fame. 

Jack McGinley 

McGinley was a standout high school athlete in Haddonfield, New Jersey, who went on to Wake Forest University to play baseball.

As a member of the Deacon team, he played an integral role in leading Wake Forest to the 1955 NCAA baseball championship. 

McGinley was only 3-2 during the regular season, but everything came together for him in the postseason.

He won two games in the regional playoffs and another three games in the College World Series for a 5-0 record. 

His final earned run average was 2.52 in 90.3 innings pitched.

McGinley eventually moved to Fayetteville where he was involved in high school coaching and later got into school administration.

For many years, he served as principal of Reid Ross High School.

Blair Sutton Craig 

Craig was a tennis standout at Terry Sanford High School. She dominated the sport in the early 1990s, winning N.C. High School Athletic Association singles championships in 1990, 1991 and 1993.

She went on to play at the collegiate level for North Carolina State, where she became only the fourth player in Wolfpack history to be selected to the All-ACC team.

Her senior year, 1997-98, the Wolfpack had its most successful tennis season ever with a 16-8 record that included a trip to its first-ever NCAA regional where they lost to South Carolina 5-2. 

 Sutton’s record at No. 1 singles for the year was 6-4.

Fayetteville Sports Club, Hall of Fame, Dwayne Allen, Francie Barragan, Leonard Sanders, Earl 'Air' Harvey, Horace Whitaker, Mabon Leslie 'Beau' Williford, Shelia Boles, Alex Gaines, Ray McDougal, Jack McGinley, Blair Sutton Craig