Ellison was one of the country’s top dual-threat quarterbacks during his senior year at Habersham Central. The option QB put up school records for rushing yards (4,372) and rushing touchdowns (63) in his illustrious career. He also passed for 1,412 yards and 15 TD. His 80 career all-purpose TDs (1 receiving and returning as well) put him 5th on the all-time state list for all-purpose TDs. His senior year of 2011 consisted of a mind-blowing 2,183 rushing yards and 32 touchdowns, adding 1,025 passing yards and 12 scores. He led the Raiders to a state playoff appearance. Ellison was a three-time BLITZ Player of the Week and the BLITZ 2011 Football Player of the Year. He was highly recruited, and went to Georgia Southern as a two-star recruit. He holds school records in many categories: longest touchdown run (94 yds), most rushing TDs in a game (5), season (32) and career (63), points scored in a season (200) and career (394), rushing yards in a season (2,183) and career (4,372) and career rushes (625). Five times he recorded more than 220 rushing yards in a game, and is one of only 13 Raiders ever to be a four-year letterman.
Ellison, named the AJC Class 4A Player of the Year in 2011, garnered 130 votes in his first year on the BLITZ Hall of Fame ballot (43.8% of the football votes). He had an outstanding career at GSU, rushing for 3,368 yards and 35 TD, while passing for 3,225 yards and 19 TD. His sophomore season (2014) featured 1,096 rushing yards and 12 TD while passing for 1,001 yards and 5 TD; his top season for the Eagles. Ellison plays professionally for the Milano Rhinos of the Italian Football League.
KEVIN ELLISON HIGHLIGHTS
Gowder was a three-star recruit out of Union County, leading the Panthers as a big-time playmaker. He was ranked the #110 athlete in the country, spending much of his time as a dominating force at tight end while playing at Union County, where he led them to a 6-4 record his senior year in 2009. With 72 receptions for 1,237 yards and 14 TD, he was named All-State by the Georgia Sports Writers Association and Atlanta Journal-Constitution, as well as being named an All-Region selection as TE.
He also spent time in the backfield, eclipsing 1,200 yards while scoring 21 touchdowns. His junior year at TE was even better (77 rec, 1,423 yds). On defense (LB) as a senior, he added 76 tackles and an interception. He finished his prep career with 225 receptions, and was a standout in basketball as well as baseball, where he was one of the region’s top pitchers, throwing a no-hitter as a junior.
Gowder (54 votes, 18.2% of votes) was given the Producer’s Pass into the BLITZ Hall of Fame, where as time rolls on it’s hard for people to remember his greatness. Gowder signed with Vanderbilt, playing three years for the Commodores despite dealing with injuries. He never recorded a stat (tackle, rush attempt or reception) while at Vandy.
Thornton was an electric running back for Stephens County, rushing for 6,309 career yards, surpassing Heisman Trophy Winner Herschel Walker’s career high school rushing totals to finish sixth all-time in the state standings. Thornton was the Region 8-AAAA Offensive Player of the Year, and named second team all-state after a solid senior season (1,756 yds, 24 TD). Three times he was an all-region, first-team pick. In his 2012 senior campaign at Stephens, Thornton averaged more than six yards per carry and nearly 160 rushing yards per game, adding two receiving scores. Thornton’s accolades includes an all-state selection by the Associated Press, Atlanta Journal-Constitution and Georgia Athletic Coaches Association (GACA) following his 2011 junior season in which he was also named 8-AAA Player of the Year. Thornton led the Indians to 30 wins in his four years, including four state playoff trips (one second round appearance).
Thornton received 59 votes (19.9%) to get in on his first year on the Hall of Fame ballot. He went on to Georgia Southern as a two-star recruit, putting up 137 rushing yards with a TD in two partial seasons. CHAZ THORNTON HIGHLIGHTS
Chambers left Union County as one of the top two-way players in school history. She was a dominating presence both in the circle and at the plate since day one, becoming a rare four-year impact player. Her career batting average of .360 consists of 14 homeruns and 117 RBI. In the circle, she went 69-31 with a 1.50 ERA and 515 strikeouts and four saves. She owns the single-season and career RBI mark at Union County.
She hit .362 with 2 homers and 19 RBI as a senior, going 15-7 with a 1.45 ERA and 130 strikeouts. Her junior year (2015) was better, as she hit .444 with 5 homeruns and 38 RBI, going 18-8 with 3 saves and a 1.33 ERA to go with 145 strikeouts. As a sophomore in 2014 she also hit .330 with 4 homers and 36 RBI while going 23-8 with a 1.54 ERA and 141 strikeouts. This came after her freshman year that saw her hit .343 with 3 homeruns and 24 RBI, going 13-8 with a save and a 1.97 ERA with 99 strikeouts.
Chambers, winner of three BLITZ POW awards, was also back-to-back winner of the BLITZ Softball Player of the Year award for her sophomore and junior seasons and led the Lady Panthers to state all four years, including an Elite 8 run and a pair of Sweet 16 appearances. Chambers (66 votes, 30.1%) got in the BLITZ Hall of Fame in her first try. She signed to play softball for the University of North Georgia.
Fleming was a star softball player for the Lady Raiders. The power-hitting catcher set the school record for homeruns, and was a four-year mainstay in the lineup, as well as a three-year basketball player. She was named first-team all-region in her 2011 junior season and all-area second team. She followed that up with an all-area honorable mention in 2012 and named to the all-region team. Fleming was an integral part of the Lady Raiders’ region championship in 2011, helping the girls to a state tournament appearance. Her sophomore year saw Habersham advance to the Sweet 16.
Fleming (64 votes, 29.9%) won a BLITZ Player of the Week award and was also a member of National Society of High School Scholars and a UGA Merit Award winner, graduating with honors and volunteering with Sources of Strength and mentoring program. Fleming went on to a successful collegiate career at Berry College, where she hit .332 for her career with 10 homers and 86 RBI, tallying 121 hits, 34 of which were doubles (47 XBH).
Hughes goes down as one of the most dominant pitchers in state history, striking out more than 1,000 batters while at Union County. She led the Lady Panthers to their sole State Championship game in 2010. Hughes was named BLITZ Player of the Year after her stellar senior season in which she went 26-6 in the circle with a 0.76 ERA and 432 strikeouts – that’s not a typo! She finished her career in the top-three in state history in strikeouts. So it’s no wonder that although tallying just 37 votes her first year on the HOF ballot and 38 the second year (15.4% of softball votes), it’s time we give her the Producer’s Pass to put her in her rightful place (689 innings pitched, 1,082 strikeouts, 79 wins).
Hughes went on to grab two Player of the Week awards in her career and leading the Lady Panthers to 101 team wins over four seasons (three state playoff runs) before heading to Lee University. She earned a 61-36 record for the Flames, to the tune of a 3.69 ERA and 658 strikeouts. She added four saves, 41 complete games (10 shutouts) and pitched 595 innings.
Webb (51 votes; 22.8%) got in on her second try on the ballot after 61 votes in her first year. The former Lady Raider standout softballer was the 2013 BLITZ Player of the Year after a great senior season in which Habersham won 15 games and made the state playoffs. That season, Webb hit .489 with 2 homeruns and 15 RBI with 10 doubles and 2 triples. She was equally impressive in the field, sporting a .961 fielding percentage.
Webb, also a Player of the Week winner, currently plays at Young Harris, and has been successful (.294 avg, 4 HR, 63 RBI). She hit .342 as a freshman at YH, adding 2 homers and 29 RBI and 11 doubles among her 51 hits while sporting a 1.000 perfect fielding percentage that year.
Gosnell was a two-sport star, making the BLITZ Hall of Fame in both volleyball and basketball in her first year, signing to play collegiately at Appalachian State in the latter. Gosnell (37 votes) was a back-to-back BLITZ Volleyball Player of the Year and Basketball Player of the Year as a junior and senior, adding a pair of Player of the Week awards. As an OH, Gosnell averaged 6.69 kills and 3.13 blocks, 2 digs and 1.7 assists per game as a junior in 2015. In 2016, she had 342 total kills, 244 digs, 112 solo blocks and 31 aces (89% serve receive) and led the Lady Raiders to a state playoff appearance, advancing to the Sweet 16.
Garrison was an often-overlooked talent in long distance running, as her career coincided with White County legend Jenna Gearing and other great runners in the North Georgia area (Towns Co Ansley Vardeman). However, Garrison had a stellar career for the Lady Panthers. She won a pair of 2A state cross country titles (Freshman 2012 & Sophomore 2013). Garrison (63 votes, 29.7%) was a first ballot BLITZ Hall of Famer. She was state runner-up in the 800 meters as a senior and fourth in the 1600. Her PRs include times of 18:35 (5000 M), 5:17 (1600 M) and 2:21 (800 M). Garrison finished in the top seven a combined four times at the state meet in the 800 and 1600 during her sophomore and junior years, earning the Fleetest of Foot Award for all four years on the Union cross country team. She also won Region 8-AA cross titles as a freshman, sophomore and senior (second as a junior), finishing first in the region meet in the 1600 from her sophomore to her senior year, and won the 800 as a junior and senior (runner-up as a sophomore).
Garrison, a two-time Player of the Week winner, was a state finalist for the Wendy’s High School Heisman Award and was a member of 4-H, Beta, Key and Interact clubs, as well as part of the United Community Bank Junior Board. Garrison now runs at UGA for the Lady Bulldogs cross country and track & field team.
Poston (62 votes, 29.2%) got in on his first year on the ballot. The Tigers’ standout long distance runner was back-to-back BLITZ Boys Cross Country Runner of the Year as a junior and senior, also taking a Player of the Week award. Poston won a region title as a junior before finishing 40th in the state meet with a PR of 16:36. As a senior, he again won the 7-AAA title, but this time finished as the state runner-up and bested his PR by over a minute (15:32). In track & field, Poston also nabbed multiple region titles and state top-five and top-10 finishes in the 800 and 1600.
Adams is a professional baseball player in the White Sox organization (BLITZ HOF Class of 2016), but he had equal chances to pursue basketball at the next level. Adams (107 votes, 17.4%) was the Player of the Year in both basketball and baseball his senior year, and grabbed a Player of the Week award as well. He averaged 18.7 pts, 8.2 reb, 4.1 ast and 3.2 stl per game his senior season, leading the Warriors to 17 wins and state tournament appearance. SPENCER ADAMS HIGHLIGHTS
Wiley garnered an all-time high 409 votes (66.4%) to get into the HOF on his first try. The 1,000 point scorer was an electric player for Banks County, eclipsing the milestone in just three seasons after transferring in. He led the Leopards to three straight Sweet 16 runs and 71 wins. Wiley was often the best athlete on the floor, and won the BLITZ Player of the Year award after his fantastic senior year (17.1 pts, 12 reb, 2.4 blk, 2 ast, 2.2 stl per game). He notched 23 double-doubles on the season.
A mere month after the season ended, Wiley nearly lost his life in a car accident that cost him both of his legs, but God spared his life. Wiley is a humble young man with a fierce spirit, and continues to regain his strength and health. The possibilities are endless for Wiley in whatever he chooses to do. KAHMAL WILEY HIGHLIGHTS
Gosnell was a sure first-ballot BLITZ HOFer (162 votes, 49.1%) in both basketball and volleyball. The back-to-back Player of the Year in both sports, Gosnell was a rare 2,000 point scorer in basketball (2,008 career points). She was virtually a guaranteed double-double every time she stepped on the floor. She was a four-year starter for the Lady Raiders, leading them to a state tournament appearance as a senior, as well as a state ranking during the regular season. Her junior stat line included 19 pts, 10 reb, 2.6 stl, 1.6 ast and 1.2 blk per game. Her senior season was even better: 20.3 pts, 11 reb, 3.2 stl, 1.5 ast, 1.6 blk per game.
Gosnell, a two-time Player of the Week award winner also, continues her basketball career at Appalachian State University where she’s sure to make a big impact on the program. LAINEY GOSNELL HIGHLIGHTS
Scott had a fantastic career at Rabun County as a four-year starter. A pure shooter who could score from anywhere on the floor, Scott capped off her career with a State Championship game appearance for the Lady Cats. She tallied 90 votes (27.3%) to get into the HOF on the first attempt. Scott, a three-time Player of the Week award winner and two-time Tennis Player of the Year (and HOF member), had a senior year that consisted of 13.1 PPG, 4.7 RPG, 3.1 SPG, 2.4 APG, and an 8-AA 1st Team All-Region and AJC First Team All-State honor.
Scott continues her basketball career at the University of North Georgia after closing her prep career with over 1,000 points. SAVANNA SCOTT HIGHLIGHTS
Flint is only the 32nd wrestler in state history to win an individual state title four times. Former Commerce wrestler Chance McClure was another. Flint (48 votes, 23.8%) put together a 126-11 career record! He was a BLITZ Wrestler of the Year finalist twice. Flint was a four-year area and sectionals champ as well, helping Commerce to duals and traditional team state titles in all four years. Flint also starred on the football field and played tennis as well. Flint continues his wrestling career at Emmanuel College.
McCrackin was one of the top wrestlers to compete at Banks County. He tallied 67 votes (23.2%) in his second year on the ballot. He was the BLITZ Wrestler of the Year in his junior season in 2014-15 after winning a state tile in the 126-lb weight class and going 62-1 that year. He was a three-time state champion and four-time region champion, helping Banks County to a state championship in 2013-14. McCrackin now wrestles as Washington & Lee University.
Crumley was a former Basketball Player of the Year before dropping the sport to focus on just baseball his senior year at White County. He had a pair of Player of the Week awards during his career for the Warriors, and received 47 votes (19%) to earn a Producer’s Pass into the BLITZ HOF. The two-way talent enjoyed a big senior year, hitting .376 with 15 HR and 33 RBI, while going 5-1 with a 2.68 ERA and 107 strikeouts in 62.2 innings pitched. He helped lead the Warriors to 20 wins that season with a region title (first in school history).
Crumley was named to the 2011 Coaches 8-AAA All-Region team as a P/OF, and also helped White Co to 19 wins and a state playoff berth as a junior. He was rated the number eight prep player in Georgia by Perfect Game. In his junior season, he went 5-3 with a 2.98 ERA and 94 strikeouts in 47 innings pitched, and hit .416 with 10 homeruns and 31 RBI. He led the Warriors with 48 strikeouts in 34.2 innings pitched and had a 3.63 ERA as a sophomore as well. He joined fellow classmate David Sosebee (also a BLITZ HOFer) in going to UGA. Crumley posted a 5-6 record and 6.41 ERA in 41 appearances, including 14 starts, striking out 42 hitters in 78.2 innings.
Maxwell only spent one season at Dawson County (2016), but it was incredible. He took home BLITZ Player of the Year honors, as well as two football Player of the Week awards. He took 82 votes (33.1%) to get in the BLITZ HOF in his first year on the ballot, and it was well-deserved. After winning a state title for Lanier, he went to Dawson and led the Tigers to 22 wins and a Sweet 16 run. Maxwell hit .518 with 5 homers and 37 RBI, scoring 51 runs and stealing 38 stolen bases, all while showing plenty of patience with 37 walks. He added 14 doubles and 3 triples.
Maxwell was a 2016 Rawlings/Perfect Game Honorable Mention All-American, earned 1st Team All-Region and was a Georgia Dugout Club All-Star as well. He had missed his entire junior year at Lanier due to injury, but as a sophomore, batted .404 with 6 HR and earned Best Defensive Player award in helping team to top national ranking and 6A state title after going 36-2. Maxwell already is a starter for the University of Georgia Bulldogs baseball team.
Westmoreland was one of the top power hitters in the state of Georgia during his senior year at White County. The former Warrior received 81 votes (32.7%) to get in on his first year on the ballot. Westmoreland was the BLITZ Baseball Player of the Year in 2013 after hitting .536 with 13 HR and 31 RBI. His OBP was .673 and he scored 31 runs and notched 24 walks.
A mainstay at Young Harris, Westmoreland finished his career with a .288 average with 19 homers and 94 RBI, adding 79 runs scored and 22 doubles while playing in roughly 150 games.
NOLAN & SAWYER HEMMER
Nolan and Sawyer are two individuals, but the twins’ careers have gone hand-in-hand. For that reason, both were inducted with 105 votes (32.5%) in their second year on the ballot. The pair were Co-Players of the Year for BLITZ after a sensational senior season in 2010. They led the Raiders to 15 wins, a region title and Sweet 16 appearance, and a #3-ranking. Nolan had 27 goals and 18 assists, while Sawyer scored 4 goals with 5 assists as a defender who helped hold opponents to just 15 goals all season. Nolan was named Region 8-AAAA Most Outstanding Player as a first team All-Region honoree in 2010, and had 72 goals and 40 assists in his 80 career starts at Habersham. Sawyer also earned Region 8-AAAA All-Region first team honors and garnered team Most Valuable Defenseman honors.
The brothers went on to play D-I soccer at Temple, where Sawyer played in 68 games (56 starts), scoring a goal with two assists, while Nolan started all 73 games in which he played, scoring 7 goals while adding 3 assists. He tallied 3 game-winners.
Loudermilk left White County as one of the top players to suit up for the Warriors. He led the boys to 10 wins and a Sweet 16 berth his senior season of 2016, recording 20 goals and 9 assists with 2 Hat Tricks. Loudermilk (72 votes, 22.2%) earned a Producer’s Pass in his first year on the ballot as he is truly deserving of this honor, as he was also named 1st Team All-Region as a senior and a Player of the Week. He continues his soccer career at Truett McConnell University.
Sanchez (99 votes, 30.6%) earned a first-ballot HOF induction after his stellar career at Dawson County, where he led the Tigers to 54 wins over four seasons, including two quarterfinal runs, a Sweet 16 berth and another state playoff appearance as well as a region title. Sanchez, a former Player of the Week, recorded 18 goals and 16 assists (School Record ) during his senior year and was named 1st Team All-Region. Sanchez is playing collegiately for Tennessee Wesleyan.
Bennett (53 votes, 26%) made the HOF in her first year on the ballot. The striker, a former Player of the Week, was always a threat to score when she had the ball for the Lady Tigers. Bennett helped the girls to 57 wins over her four years, including two quarterfinal runs, a Sweet 16 and another first-round appearance, as well as a region title. As a junior, she notched 10 goals and 18 assists (then-School Record) and was named 1st Team All-Region. As a senior (again 1st Team All-Region), she tallied 19 goals and 13 assists, while missing the final handful of games (including playoffs) with a torn ACL.
Magill was a one-time Player of the Week and multiple Player of the Year finalist. She led the Lady Warriors soccer team to state all four years (39 wins), including a Sweet 16 run. She was a 1st Team All-Region honoree in all four years — a feat in itself. Magill had 21 goals and 5 assists as a senior. She set the White County freshman record for goals (17) and the single-season mark (23 goals), as well as career goals (80), surpassing former Lady Warrior and BLITZ HOFer Kaitlyn Hooper. Magill also finished with 26 career assists. Magill (73 votes, 35.8%) signed to play at Valdosta State University, but took a year off after graduation to focus on club soccer. She had missed most of her club seasons as a junior and senior due to surgery and injuries. It has paid off — she finished the 2016 U-19 Athena A season as the third top scorer in the state. She has committed to play at Valdosta State beginning Fall 2017.
George earned the Producer’s Pass to the BLITZ HOF after only gathering 47 votes in year one on the ballot and 30 votes in year two (26.7%). George has been forgotten by some as a state champion contender during his time at Lumpkin County. He was a three-time All-Region and All-State selection (2009-11) and claimed individual Region Championships in both 2010 and 2011 as a junior and senior, and was the State Runner-Up in 2010. As a junior in 2010, he averaged a 71.4, while dropping that to a 71.1 in his senior season and finishing third at state. George was the BLITZ Golfer of the Year in both of those seasons. He went on to a solid career at the University of North Georgia.
Rowland (83 votes, 48.6%) was a fantastic high school golfer, and was named BLITZ Golfer of the Year back-to-back in 2014 and 2015. As a junior, he placed 3rd at region with a 79, and placed 7th among 3A golfers at state with a 75. He reached new heights as a senior, averaging under 74 and became the 4A state runner-up while carding an unbelievable 71. This led to Rowland being named 1st Team All-State. He had finished fourth in region, but rebounded and polished off his career in incredible fashion.
He had six tournament victories and was a part of the winningest senior class in White County history, as the Warriors made state three straight years with Ben Turner and Duncan Moody. This included a 2013 region championship. Rowland was selected to the GHSGCA (Georgia High School Golf Coaches Association) Ryder cup team, Team North, which won. He also holds the distinction of completing 11 straight tournament rounds during his senior year without a 3-putt. Rowland initially played college golf at Piedmont College before leaving.
Gowder was a standout golfer at Banks County, and was named 2012 BLITZ Golfer of the Year as a junior. She averaged a 79 that season, and finished 7th at state with an 82. That came on the heels of a region runner-up finish (80). Gowder notched 58 votes (25.1%) to get in the HOF after two years on the ballot. Gowder went on to play golf at Young Harris for three seasons.
Flowers led the Warriors to an 8-8 season his senior year (2010), and was named BLITZ Player of the Year while putting together a solid 15-1 record at #1 singles. Flowers (64 votes, 39%) lost only once at #1 singles in his high school career, going 70-4 overall. Flowers went on to ABAC on a tennis scholarship.
Scott (57 votes, 34.8%) made the BLITZ HOF in her first year in both tennis and basketball. While basketball is what she ended up having the most success, she also had a stellar tennis career at Rabun. As both a sophomore and junior, she was named BLITZ Tennis Player of the Year. In 2015, she went 12-0 at #3 singles while helping the Lady Cats to their first region title in 20 years. She was named 2nd Team All-Region, and won 77% of her sets and 78% of her games. As a junior in 2016, she again was undefeated at #3 singles, going 13-0, winning over 95% of her sets and 84% of her games. As a senior, she went 9-1 overall at #2 singles, finishing with a career record of 34-1. Scott signed a basketball scholarship with University of North Georgia.
Boys Track & Field
Seay (65 votes, 19.9%) got in on his second try on the ballot after just 23 votes the year prior. He was an incredibly gifted athlete at Hab Central, nearly winning a state title in shot put. That 2010 season earned him BLITZ Track & Field Athlete of the Year honors. He placed third at the USATF Region III Junior Olympics with a PR of 156-4 ½ in the discus. At the Region 8-AAAA meet, Seay won the shot put at a PR of 47’11 and took third in the discus. He took second in both events at the USATF Georgia Championships. Seay went on to compete at the University of South Carolina.
Woerner (78 votes, 23.6%) finally got in after two years on the ballot for Track & Field, although he was a first ballot BLITZ HOFer in football. He had only 38 votes in the first year. Woerner was the 2014 BLITZ Track & Field Athlete of the Year as just a sophomore. He was exceptional in shot put, discus and 110 meter hurdles. That sophomore year he placed 3rd in the state in 110 meter hurdles and shot put, and 4th in discus. He won the region title in shot put and 110 meter hurdles. In his senior year, Woerner was region champ in shot put and discus, finishing 6th in shot put at state while winning a state title in discus. Woerner’s football career was more prestigious, where he now plays at UGA.