New Sports Hall of Fame members include, from left,
Ken Rice, Jimmy Stephens, Delene Lee, Jasper Lee,
and Melvin Montoya.
Piedmont names five to sports Hall of Fame
The Piedmont College Letter Club selected five new members to its Sports Hall of Fame during a luncheon April 16 at the college in Demorest.
This year’s class includes two soccer standouts, Jimmy Stephens of the Class of ’95 and Melvin Montoya of the Class of ’03. Ken Rice of ’61, was selected for his play on the baseball diamond and basketball court; and Jasper and Delene Lee were named honorary members for their staunch support of all the Piedmont teams.
Jimmy Stephens of Clarkesville played four years of soccer for the Lions under former coach Jason Smith, who along with Athletic Director John Dzik presented the award. Stephens was a member of the first Piedmont soccer team and was a captain for three years. After graduation, he served as an assistant coach at Piedmont for two years before taking the helm as head men’s and women’s coach at Emmanuel College, where in 2003 the men’s team earned a bid to the NAIA Regional Tournament after posting its first winning season at 12-6. He then returned to Piedmont in 2004 to coach both soccer teams and currently serves as the men’s coach. His team won the GSAC title in 2006 and Stephens was twice named GSAC Coach of the Year.
Melvin Montoya of Atlanta played four seasons of soccer at Piedmont and was named to the All-Conference Team each year. Although playing as a defender, he had eight goals and 12 assists in his career and was named the GSAC Freshman of the Year and the Conference Most Valuable Player in 1998. He earned numerous team and coach’s awards and was twice named the Lions’ Most Valuable Defender. As a team captain, he helped lead the Lions to a regular season championship and GSAC Tournament Championship, as well as an NCCAA Region Championship.
Ken Rice of Orangeburg, S.C., played four years of baseball and one year of basketball for the Lions and was the student body president. He was named to the All-Conference Baseball Team three years and helped the Lions win three conference championships. He played for the 1961 team that completed a remarkable 32-2 season. After graduation, the Boston, Mass., native coached baseball, basketball and football at the high school level and coached at Franklin Pierce College.
Jasper and Delene Lee of Clarkesville were singled out by the Letter Club for their years as two of the Lions’ most dedicated fans. Delene came to Piedmont as vice president of finance and administrative affairs and later served as athletic director. After retiring from Piedmont, she and her husband, Jasper, have continued to support the Lions teams, attending most home and many away games. For several years, Jasper has provided action photos of the teams that are featured on the Piedmont web site.