In the decade of the sixties the game of softball was gaining some prominence in Corbin. The fast pitch games was dominated by pitchers, and the slow pitch game was viewed as a game for pantywaists.
In Corbin, a fellow named Gene Leigh decided to put together a modified pitch league, and it caught on quick. Young men all over town started forming teams and acquiring sponsorship from local merchants and soon Corbin had become a hot bed for softball in the state of Kentucky.
Players came from neighboring towns to join these local teams initially and soon after began forming their own teams to compete in the Corbin league.
It was about that time that a husky young guy from Cincinnati moved to Williamsburg. Gene Mosley was that young guy that married his sweetheart “Pete” and they raised two fine boys, Rick and Steve.
Gene was a very good softball player and knew the game very well. He put together the Davis Motor softball team and finally the Bank of Williamsburg team. Mosley really knew what he was doing as he put together an excellent team made up of good players such as Brance Steeley, Troy Lovitt, Johnny Hash, Robert “Puddin” Ballow, Eddie Manning, The Stanfill brothers, Terry Stigall and many others that will come to mind later I am sure.
After a couple of years of battling with the local teams, Bill Hoover convinced Mosley and Eddie Manning to join the Pepsi Cola representative in the local league and thus a family tree was planted.
There were many leaves on this three that blossomed in the 60’s. Bill Hoover and his brother, Vin, Myrv Grigsby, Paul Pietrowski, Phil Henderlight, Phil Storms, Robert Igo, Bobby Westerfield, Ed “Bubby” Hollingsworth, Tommy Lundy, Jerry Cassidy and Jerry Hodges were some of the Corbin boys that helped fill out the tree, and other towns pitches in to help as the tree began to grow.
Help came from Barbourville with Jack Ketchum, Owen Mills, the Phipps brothers, the Rowe brothers and Doug Logan. Out of Tennessee came Phil Hatcher and Alvin Evans.
From Louisville came the Bass brothers, Billy and Dave, Mike Robey and Mike Devine.
By the eighties Terry Martin had taken over managerial duties and the tree had nearly filled out. It was the autumn of our lives and our leaves were beginning to change and a few dropped from the branches as we lost Robert Igo, Gary Lunsford, Jimmy Jordan, Ed Hollingsworth and Bobby Westerfield.
On Wednesday of last week we honored our friend of over forty years, Gene Mosley on his 75th birthday and proclaimed him our elder statesman. He is a man we all love and respect.
We took Geno to Oak Ridge, Tennessee on a charted bus filled with his teammates to Big Ed’s Pizza last week and Tommy Lundy, the team artist (not every team has their own team artist) sketched a likeness of Gene on a pizza platter which was signed by all his buddies.
Over a period of forty years a tree can grow a lot, the branches on this tree stretched from Rock Hill, North Carolina to Las Vegas, from Oliver Springs to New York City, Lexington to St. Petersburg from Maryville, Tennessee to Fayetteville, South Carolina, but the roots of the tree are in Corbin, Kentucky.
The Louisville DeSales Colts took yet another step toward the Class AA state championship game with a 55-8 thumping of Louisville Western. Of course they now must contend with Owensboro Catholic, but it illustrates just how for the Corbin Redhounds came this year as the Corbin-DeSales game was a toss up.
Rumors of football coaching changes in the local high school ranks caught my attention in the last week. I think it was Red Auerback, the old coach and General Manager of the Boston Celtics who once said sometimes the trades you don’t make are your best trades. The coaching situation at all the local schools seems as solid as I have ever know it to be.
It seems like only yesterday when coach Tony Pietrowski was walking off the floor at Rupp Arena with Andrew Parks, Jordan Noble and Brad Lawson. Now, Andrew is at Bellarmine playing basketball, Jordan is playing basketball at Alice Lloyd and Brad is playing football at the University of the Cumberlands. Coach Pietrowski, well, he is readying his troops at Corbin High School for the 2005-06 season. It should be an exciting year.
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