CENTENARY — The Gallia Academy Athletic Hall of Fame recently inducted three new members, including Coach Garry Adkins, Heath Hutchinson and Willie Wood.
The inductees were announced and recognized on the 50-yard line at a GAHS football game last month and were later honored with a dinner and presented with a plaque.
Adkins was instrumental in the development of women’s sports at Gallia Academy. He started coaching junior high boys basketball from 1972-1975. He won one league championship and from 1986-2009 he began coaching junior high girls basketball where he won nine SEOAL championships. From 1994-2004 he coached varsity softball and in 1997 the team was the district runner-up. He coached junior varsity softball from 1986-1996 and varsity volleyball from 1997-2004. The volleyball teams were district runner-up in 1999 and 2001. Adkins coached junior high volleyball from 2004-08 where he won SEOAL championships each year. In 2000 he received an award from the Ohio High School Athletic Association for his 100 victories in volleyball and in 2009 for 200 victories in basketball.
Hutchinson is described as one of the toughest players to ever wear a Gallia Academy football uniform. In 1994 he broke Bill Joe Johnson’s 46-year old scoring record of 271 points by ending with 272 points and finished second to Pete Neal in the single season scoring record. He broke Neal’s 23-year old record of rushing yards per season by 141 yards, finishing with 1,249 yards. He finished second to Danny Howard in career rushing yards. He shattered Gamble Grant’s all-purpose yards total by 491 by ending with 1,755 yards. He also set the record for most touchdowns in one season of 21. In 1994 his team broke the record total yards from scrimmage of 568. He was also an outstanding defensive back. He finished sixth on the team in tackles as a junior and fifth as a senior.
Wood was described as an outstanding football player and track athlete, lettering three years in both sports. In football he was selected game MVP many times. He received the Golden Helmet Award and Coaches Award. He played fullback and was considered one of the league’s best blockers. In track and field during the 1982 season he won the discus in the Charleston Gazette Relays and the SEOAL. He received all-state honors by finishing fifth in the discus with a throw of 149 feet, 8 inches. He broke the school record with a throw of 174 feet, 2 inches. He was also an outstanding shot putter. In many meets he won both discus and shot or was in the top five. He also set SEOAL league records in the discus with a toss of 159 feet.