Roseville High to recognize first athletics Hall of Fame class

By: Jason Carmel Davis | Roseville - Eastpointe Eastsider | Published January 24, 2018

 Roseville High graduate and former wrestling coach Davon Gray holds up a regional championship trophy in 2012. Gray is one of eight former Roseville athletes who will be inducted into the school’s first Hall of Fame class Feb. 2.

Roseville High graduate and former wrestling coach Davon Gray holds up a regional championship trophy in 2012. Gray is one of eight former Roseville athletes who will be inducted into the school’s first Hall of Fame class Feb. 2.

File photo by David Schreiber

ROSEVILLE — Eight of the most decorated athletes to pass through the halls of Roseville High will be remembered forever following a ceremony early next month, as they make up the inaugural class of the Roseville High Athletic Hall of Fame.

The honorees will be recognized at halftime of the boys basketball game Feb. 2 against Utica Ford II. Tipoff is set for 7 p.m.

Honorees include Ernie Whitt, who was a 1970 graduate of Carl Brablec High in Roseville and had a standout baseball career, including a 15-year run in MLB; 1992 Roseville grad Brian Sikorski, who played baseball at Western Michigan University and spent nine years in MLB and another 11 playing professionally in Japan; and 1994 grad Davon Gray, who won two wrestling state championships and a national title as a senior. Gray wrestled at Central Michigan University and served as the Panthers’ wrestling coach for a number of years.

Also being inducted are 1985 graduate Joe Pantaleo, who was a two-time state champion wrestler who went on to become a two-time All-American at the University of Michigan; 2001 grad Vanessa (Maher) Blair, who won a state championship in the high jump and earned an athletic scholarship to the University of Nebraska; 1982 graduate Rich Maloney, who earned a baseball scholarship to Western Michigan, was a third-team All-American and played with the AAA affiliate for the Atlanta Braves; 1975 graduate Harry Sullins, who since graduating has won five Professional Bowlers Association tour championships and is a member of several bowling Hall of Fames; and 1964 graduate Stan Mizinski, who holds the school record in the long jump, 120-meter high hurdles and 180  low hurdles, and earned a track scholarship to Western Michigan.

Panthers Athletic Director Chris LaFeve said in a statement that the goal of the Hall of Fame is to honor the past while building toward the future. A committee of eight former Roseville ADs selected the honorees. Possible inductees must have graduated from Roseville Community Schools at least 10 years before selection, played collegiate sports, and earned honors at the league and/or state level.

“(The Hall of Fame) will help us celebrate all of the people who have benefited from the amazing schools, athletics and community that Roseville provides,” LaFeve said. “The (committee) could not have picked a better group of people to represent Roseville Community Schools.”

Prior to the halftime ceremony, Roseville will unveil its redesigned athletic wing hallway, which features new wall graphics, including photos of current and former athletes, and a new touch-screen display. The interactive display will include biographies of each inductee, along with school records and schedules. 

“We have compiled (a list of) all athletes who have earned honors in their time at Roseville High,” LaFeve said, “and each year the Hall of Fame Committee will … discuss potential former athletes who meet the criteria.”

District Superintendent John Kment said selecting future classes could prove difficult.

“Roseville has produced some outstanding athletes over the years,” Kment said. “It was an extremely tough decision as to who should be in this first group. We have many fine past athletes who we hope to induct in the future.”