By Jon Gremmels Herald Sports Editor
The Clinton Herald
---- — CLINTON — A one-of-a-kind celebration is planned for Friday night at Coan Field.
Not only will the River Kings play their first official game on the newly installed field turf, but Clinton High School also will induct its inaugural class in the schools’ Athletes Hall of Fame.
The 14-member group will be recognized in a pregame ceremony before the River Kings open the 2013 football season against visiting Davenport North.
The first class includes eight former CHS athletes, four coaches and two others who made significant contributions to Clinton High athletics over the year.
“What we got with this group was some of the real legends and some real contributors,” Clinton athletic director Gary Lueders said earlier this spring when the inaugural Hall of Fame class was announced. “I think this class is one we can be proud of. I think a lot more people deserve to go in, and I’m sure they will. I think it will be a special night for us.”
The ceremony begins at 7 p.m., and many of the Hall of Famers will be present for the event.
The Hall of Fame class covers eight decades of Clinton High School athletics, beginning with the legendary Duke Slater from the early part of the 20th century to wrestler Dan Knight, who won his fourth state title in 1987 to cap an undefeated career, and his wrestling coach at Clinton, Bob Lueders.
The other former athletes being honored are Carl Nelson, a track legend from the 1930s; Kenny Ploen and Chuck Vogt, classmates in the early 1950s who went on to stellar careers in football at the University of Iowa and basketball at Iowa State University, respectively; Dick Farwell, who graduated a year after Ploen and Vogt and also played college basketball at Iowa State; Gary Morris, an All-American swimmer in the 1950s; and Dan Roushar, a three-sport standout in the 1970s.
Former coaches being honored are Bill Holsclaw, whose teams won seven state championships in cross country and track and field; Howard Judd, who guided Clinton to 11 state swimming titles during his 35 years at the helm; Max Lynn, who coached football at Clinton in the 1940s and 1950s and then served as athletic director until 1969; and Bob Lueders, who served as wrestling coach for more than two decades.
Bill Holmstrom, athletic director from 1969 to 1992, and Hank Dihlman, the radio voice of the River Kings from the 1940s through the 1980s, are being recognized for their contributions to Clinton High School athletics.