2017 – 2018 marks the 50th year of athletic competition at Western Guilford High School. To celebrate this milestone in school history, Western Guilford has started the WGHS Athletics Hall of Fame. The inaugural class of inductees has been announced and includes the following:
Patron of Athletics: Henry Walters
Team: The 1977 Women’s Track Team;
Coach: Doug Henderson
Athletes: Mark Guenther, Lisa Stockton, Jerry Russell, Anthony Saunders and Tatyana Kirichenko
(See detailed Inductee Biographies below)
This first class of Western Guilford Athletics Hall of Fame inductees will be honored at a banquet on September 14, 2017, at 7:00 PM, at the beautiful Kress Terrace in downtown Greensboro. If you would like to attend this inaugural event to support and celebrate this amazing group, please contact Brett Stell at firstname.lastname@example.org. You will be sent instructions on how to purchase tickets and other details of the event. Tickets are $25.00 per person.
If you are interested in making a tax-deductible donation to the Western Guilford Athletics Hall of Fame, please send an email to the same address, email@example.com and you will be contacted on how to do that. Thank you in advance for your support for this amazing group of Fighting Hornets!
Henry Walters was Western Guilford’s first principal; serving from 1968 through 1982. He established himself as a strong proponent of athletics as well as academics and saw the success of both as necessary components for a well-rounded school that met the needs of its students in the classroom as well as on the playing fields. Mr. Walter’s vision was for Western Guilford to be a leader in academics and athletic competition, thereby bringing pride to Western Guilford’s students and community.
The 1977 Women’s Track Team
Coached by Mickie Tuttle, Western Guilford captured the 1977 NCHSAA State Track Championship, Western Guilford’s first ever State Championship. This accomplishment was all the more meaningful for Coach Tuttle and her team as this was a unified State Championship with all Divisions: 1A, 2A, 3A, and 4A competing together to crown a single State Champion.
Coach Henderson coached for 17 years at WGHS in a variety of coaching assignments. He coached men’s golf 1 year, men’s tennis 1 year, men’s track from 1973-1984, head football coach from 1972-1989, and was the school’s Athletics Director from 1973-1989. He compiled a 215 – 102 – 5 record in football that was highlighted by winning the 3-A State Championship in 1977. His record in dual and triangular track meets was a stellar 188 wins against only 5 losses and included stretches of 48 and 46 meets won in a row. Coach Henderson coached in the North-South Bowl game in 1977, the East-West All-Star Game in 1980, and coached in the Shrine Bowl Game 1988. He was one of the founders of the North Carolina Football Coaches Association and was elected President of the Association in 1986. He also served as the Football Association’s Executive Secretary from 1988 through 2003. Coach Henderson has been inducted into the Guilford County Hall of Fame, the North Carolina High School Hall of Fame, and the Stadium at WGHS bears his name.
Mark Guenther – Class of 1975
During Mark’s years at Western, he lettered 13 times in 4 different sports; 3 letters in Football, 3 letters in Basketball, 3 letters in Track, and 4 letters in baseball. During his time at Western, Mark participated in over 200 Varsity events. He was the Golden Helmet Award winner (MVP) in football in 1974 and made All-Conference in football (1973, 1974), Basketball, (1974, 1975), and Baseball (1974, 1975). He was a member of the Greensboro News and Record All-State Baseball Team in 1975. Mark was also a member of the Winning NC Shrine Bowl football team in 1974 and was selected to play in the NC East /West All-Star Football game in 1975. He went on to attend Guilford College to play baseball where he posted a career batting average of .387 and in 1978 led the nation in hitting with a .454 average. Mark received Guilford College’s Nereus English Leadership Award in 1978, and was voted by all Guilford College Athletes as the Senior Male Athlete of the Year in 1979. In 1999, Mark was honored by being inducted into the Guilford College Hall of Fame.
Lisa Stockton – Class of 1982
Lisa lettered 12 times in four different sports while at Western; 4 letters in Volleyball, 4 letters in Basketball, 3 letters in Softball, and 1 letter in Track, and was a six time team captain. She was a 4 time All Conference performer in Basketball and was the 1982 Conference Basketball Player of the Year. Her performance in volleyball netted her 2 All Conference selections and was the Most Outstanding Performer in the conference track meet in 1982; her only year participating in the sport. She earned that recognition by being Conference Champion in four different events. Lisa played basketball at Wake Forest University and still ranks in the top 10 in points scored, made field goals, assists, and steals. She was honored by the NCHSAA on the list of “100 to Remember” Female Athletes for the 100 year anniversary of NC High School Sports. She was drafted by the WNBA, but chose instead to begin her coaching career as a volunteer assistant at the University of North Carolina. After a short stay as the head coach at Greensboro College, she returned to Division I as an assistant at Georgia Tech. Lisa has been the Head Women’s Basketball Coach at Tulane University since 1994 where she has compiled an outstanding record of 479 wins and 242 losses.
Jerry Russell – Class of 1984
Jerry was a three sport star who lettered 10 times during his career at Western; 4 letters in Basketball, 4 letters in Baseball, and 2 letters in Football. In Basketball, Jerry was team MVP in 1982, 1983, and 1984; All-Conference in 1983 and 1984, and Conference Tournament MVP and Conference Player of the Year in 1984. In Baseball, he earned All-Conference honors in 1982 and 1984 and was the starting catcher and team MVP on the 1984 State Championship team. Jerry was an All-Conference performer in Football in 1983. During Jerry’s senior year, he accomplished a feat that has not been duplicated in WGHS athletics. He was All-State in three sports: Football, Basketball, and Baseball. Jerry went on to star at Elon where he lettered 4 years in Basketball and Baseball. He played in the NAIA Baseball World Series in 1985 and 1987 and was All-Conference, All-Area, All-District and Honorable Mention All-American in 1986.
Anthony Saunders – Class of 1997
Anthony was a three sport star with multiple letters in Football, Basketball, and Track during his time at WGHS. Anthony was a member of the 4 x 100 relay team that won the State Championship in 1997. His amazing achievements in football will be tough to match. He was the Conference Player of the Year in 1994, 1995, and 1996 and was the Guilford County Player of the Year in 1995 and 1996. Anthony was named All-Northwest and All-State in 1995 and 1996. Upon graduation, Anthony held North Carolina high school records for career rushing yards (7,782), carries in a season (371), career touchdowns (103), rushing touchdowns (100), and 100-yard games by rushing for over 100 yards in 40 consecutive games. His 7,782 rushing yards landed him in the top 20 in the nation in the history of high school football. In 1996 he was the Most Valuable Player of the Shrine Bowl as he led the North Carolina prep stars to victory with 102 yards on 18 carries. Anthony went on to play college football at the University of North Carolina.
Tatyana Kirichenko – Class of 2001
Tatyana was a three-sport star at WGHS excelling in Volleyball, Indoor and Outdoor Track. Tatyana was All Conference in Volleyball in 1999 and 2000 and the Conference Volleyball Player of the Year in 2000. Her records and performance in Track and Field are unmatched by any athlete in the history of WGHS, Guilford County, and the state of North Carolina. She was All Conference and All Region in the High Jump, Triple Jump and 100 meter High Hurdles in 1999, 2000, and 2001. Her talents earned her the Conference and Regional Championships in the High Jump, the Triple Jump, 100 meter High Hurdles, and Pole Vault in 2000, and 2001. In her 8 State Championship appearances in Track and Field, Tatyana had 8 Podium Finishes (either first, second, or third) in the High Jump, Triple Jump, Pole Vault, and the 100 meter High Hurdles. She was the State Champion in the Triple Jump and the Pole Vault in 2001 on her way to being named the NC Female Athlete of the Year. She went on to UNC Chapel Hill where she made All-ACC 13 times from 2001 to 2005 in Indoor and Outdoor Track and Field, and was a two-time ACC Champion in the Heptathlon in 2003 and the Pole Vault in 2004.