POTTSTOWN >> The 44th class of the Tri-County Area Chapter of the Pennsylvania Sports Hall of Fame inducted Saturday night before a crowd of over 200 at the SunnyBrook Ballroom. And no matter what sport or sports they played, how many records they set, or what level of proficiency they achieved, the new members all spoke about their love of the sport, their appreciation for everyone who helped them along the way, and the lessons they learned that they have learned for life through sport.
Recruits included all-around Pottsgrove star Jim Cerminaro, Spring-Ford longtime wrestling coach Jim Seislove, Pottsgrove soccer star Brent Carter, Phoenixville Trio star Harry Barr, Perkiomen Valley and Shippensburg basketball great Tracy (Spencer) Wetherbee, Boyertown High school and American Legion baseball star Matt Spade, and Owen J. Roberts, football and track and field legend Ryan Brumfield.
The seven candidates of the Class of 2022:
Jimmy Cerminaro >> “To overcome adversity, it takes a team,” he said. “You all work for one goal. That’s the biggest thing you can take away from the sport.”
Cerminaro is considered one of Pottsgrove’s greatest all-around athletes of all time, having excelled in football, basketball and baseball and being named to numerous All-League teams. In football, he played quarterback, punts, had 15 career interceptions and was named PAC and PCTV Defensive Player of the Year. In basketball, he was an All-League point guard. In baseball, he was a career .400 hitter and a three-time All-League shortstop. He then played football at William and Mary, where he scored his first collegiate touchdown on an interception return against Villanova in 1999 and was a letter winner for four years.
“It’s just a great event,” he added. “This area has so many great athletes. It’s great that they can come together.”
Tim Seislove >> “I have been blessed by many good people who have brought me to this point,” he said. “I never expected that. It’s pretty awesome.”
Seislove has coached wrestling at Spring-Ford for 23 years and became the highest winning coach in program history with a record of 402-163. Its teams have won four PAC, two district, and one regional titles. He has coached 52 state qualifiers, 19 state medalists, four state runners-up and one state champion. In 2001, he was named the 2020 PIAA District 1 Class 3A Coach of the Year. In the 1980s he wrestled at Spring-Ford and Ursinus College, winning a total of 150 bouts.
“I never expected that to happen,” he added. “I just show up in the wrestling room and coach wrestling every day. The last 25-30 years have gone by pretty quickly.”
Brent Carter >> His football career began at a young age with the Pottstown PAL team, which he led to a national championship. He recently earned his PGA certification as a golf instructor and trains high school golf near Washington, DC
In between, he was a star in football and basketball at Pottsgrove. In football, he was a two-way starter every three years. He rushed for 1,000 yards each season and had 38 touchdowns.
Incredibly, he never fiddled with football throughout his high school career and it contributed to his early education.
“It started for me at Pop Warner, in little league football,” he said. “As a running back, my most important responsibility is to stick with football. I put it away like a baby or a loaf of bread.”
He was twice named to the All-PAC Football Team and for the Pa. East-West All-Star Game where he ran for 97 yards. In basketball, he was team captain and received two awards in all leagues. He received a full football scholarship to Penn State.
“It’s beautiful,” he said of the inaugural banquet. “It’s great. It’s always a pleasure to come home. I’m just very grateful to be nominated for such a prestigious award.”
Harry Barr, Sr. >> A three-sport athlete in Phoenixville in football, wrestling and track, he earned nine college letters and was named Most Outstanding Athlete in his junior and senior years. In track and field, he dominated the sprint events, winning four Ches Mont titles in the 100 and 220 yard dashes. He also set an unofficial PIAA record in the 100 with a time of 9.5 in his senior year. He was also a star, running back and rising up districts in wrestling.
He attended West Chester University and then enlisted in the US Army. Many of his records still stand today.
Barr died in 2003 and his daughter Tangelia (Barr) Miller accepted the award.
“It’s definitely incredible,” she said. “I wish he could have been here to accept that. I’m sure he would be so proud and grateful and proud of his sporting career.”
Tracy (Spencer) weather bee >> She was one of the best athletes to graduate from Perkiomen Valley and excelled at basketball and lacrosse. A 1991 graduate, she scored 1,247 career points in basketball and then went to Shippensburg, where she had a career in the Hall of Fame. There she scored 1,976 career points and set 10 records, including most points in a season (670) and 3 points in a season (93). She was a three-time PSAC Player of the Year and ECAC Co-Player of the Year. She led the Raiders to the 1996 NCAA Division II championship game and was a runner-up All-American.
“You start with a love of the game and you go from there,” she said. “We have two children, a senior and a freshman. The things we preach all the time is hard work and discipline.”
Matt Spade >> Star pitcher and first baseman for the Boyertown High School and American Legion baseball teams. In 1991 he was MVP of the State Championship High School Team and was named Mercury Player of the Year. At Legion Ball, he was named 1990 Regional MVP and 1991 State MVP and Gatorade Player of the Year.
“I played sports because I loved it,” he said. “In Boyertown, baseball was a way of life. I had a lot of good coaches, a lot of good friends.”
Spade was drafted by the San Diego Padres but chose Marshall University, where he was a 1993 and 1994 All-Conference and 1994 MVP. He set Marshall records for career strikeouts and innings and is the only Marshall pitcher at the South Conference 100 strikeout club. He played professional baseball with the Pittsburgh Pirates from 1994 to 1996.
“It was a great experience,” he said of his professional career. “Learned many life lessons.
Ryan Brumfield >> “It’s just great to be part of this group,” he said. “A lot of great athletes have come out of the PAC.”
Brumfield excelled in soccer and track with Owen J. Roberts. At the Pennsylvania State Track and Field Championships, he won the high jump event with a jump of 6-10. In football, he was an All-PAC First Team three times and was also selected to the All-State team. He rushed for 2,844 yards and 36 touchdowns in his senior year in 2010 and became a pa. Named Sportswriters Player of the Year.
He finished second all-time in the state with 8,595 rushing yards and 111 touchdowns.
“There’s a lot in there,” he said of those incredible sums. “Great coaches, a great offensive, a great team. My brothers paved the way for me and showed me the path of hard work and the way to get there.”
Brumfield went on to play football at Eastern Michigan University, where he racked up 1,000 yards in his career.
REMARKS >> Jermaine Thaxton, who is regarded as one of the most dominant athletes to ever play at Pottsgrove while earning all league honors in football and basketball in the late 1990s, was supposed to be one of Saturday’s recruits but was unable to attend the banquet . He is scheduled to be admitted next year. … Dave Psota, longtime coach at St. Pius X High School, received the seventh Elmer “Chump” Pollock Award. . . . Chapter President Dave Reidenouer was the Toastmaster and Jim Mich, another longtime trainer at St. Pius X, offered the invocation and prayer. … The Tri-County Chapter has been inducting new members annually since 1978. This year’s class included NFL star receiver Pete Retzlaff, basketball and baseball pro Dick Ricketts, and American League MVP Bobby Shantz in 1952 when he fielded for the Philadelphia Athletics.