Colusa County Hall of Fame Dinner Approaches (Part 1)

Five standout athletes from Colusa County’s past, in addition to a coach and a team, will be honored at the 14th Annual Colusa County Sports Hall of Fame dinner on July 9. This year’s Hall of Fame inductees include alumni from Colusa, Williams, Maxwell, and Pierce High Schools, and each is deserving of enshrinement, committee member Vance Boyes said.

“(The Colusa County Hall of Fame) is wonderful, just in general. I can’t tell you how many great old-time people we are able to recognize before they pass away. That’s one of the neat things we do — get these things documented. This year’s class is, again, a combination of outstanding athletes that all have been special in their own way. At the end  of the day, I think they’re all worthy of being inducted. It provides a platform… a vehicle where we can say thanks — for being a good athlete, a coach, and for what you’ve done for Colusa County athletics,” Boyes said. “A lot of these guys, they basically lived through sports.”

The dinner, set for 6 PM at the Colusa Casino Resort, will also honor a selection of high school senior athletes. In addition to honoring those seniors for their own athletic achievments, the dinner also introduces them to the Colusa County athletes, coaches, and directors of yesteryear — who are often still successful members of their communities today.

“We’ve been doing it for almost 15 years now. Part of the beauty of it is we get to recognize senior athletes from different high schools, recognize the section championship teams, etc.” Boyes said. “We like to have these young kids hear about these successful community members, and there is a lot of great history. It helps to foster a sense of character within the county.”

2016 Hall of Fame Inductees

Paul Sengo

Sengo was a four sport athlete at Maxwell High School, starring in football, basketball, baseball and track in the mid-1950’s. During the 1956 season, Sengo scored 27 total touchdowns as the Panthers’ starting tailback and kick return specialist. Sengo continued his education at Chico, where he discovered wrestling and excelled under the tutleage of coach Hal (Doc) Peterson. Sengo was undefeated in Far West Conference matches for three years straight there. In 1961, Sengo earned himself a trip to the NCAA Finals, where he was eliminated by the eventual champion in the first round. Sengo is a member of the Chico State Athletic Hall of Fame. Sengo went on to become the principal at the Livermore Del Valle Continuation High School, one of the finest continuation schools in the state. After retiring, he returned to Chico and took up softball.

Ron Dixon

Dixon graduated from Pierce High School in 1966, where he starred in basketball and baseball. He received four varsity letters in each sport, was a captain twice for each sport, and was a member of five championship winning teams. He was prolific both as a scorer and a playmaker on the basketball court, and was selected as all league three times and was twice selected as the league MVP. For baseball, Dixon was selected as an all-league player twice. Dixon went on to play basketball at UC Davis, under National Hall of Fame coach Bob Hamilton. After graduating, Dixon joined the Marine Corps and continued to play basketball on the base team. Dixon was also the sports editor for the Marine newspaper. Dixon lived out his life in San Diego, where he passed away in Nov. 2011.

Mike Smith

Smith, a three sport athlete, graduated from Williams High School in 1964. He was a three-year varsity letterman in football, basketball and baseball. Smith was selected as an all-conference player for football during both his junior and senior year, and was an all-conference honorable mention in his sophomore year. Smith was a member of the 1963 North Valley League Champion Williams Yellowjackets football team as a junior. After graduating from Williams High School, Smith went on to play football for Chico State, where he started on both offense and defense as a freshman. Smith played two additional years there, started as an offensive end in his junior year. He graduated from Chico State in 1972.

Jim Marengo

Marengo graduated from Williams High School in 1968, where he played football. Marengo went on to Butte College, where he continued his education and football career, starting on the defensive side of the ball as an inside linebacker. Marengo went on to receive a degree from Sonoma State University, and a Masters in Fine Arts and Literature from Vermont College. He started playing rugby sometime around 1972, and was the founding father of the Colusa County Farmers Rugby Club — which went on to become a Division One national powerhouse. His legacy lives on in Colusa County Rugby to this day. Marengo also taught and coached football at Pinedale, Mendocino and Pierce High School. He passed away on Feb. 13, 2016.

Brady Meyers

Meyers was a three-sport letterman in football, basketball and golf at Colusa High School from 1973-76. He also was a four-year letterman in golf, and was an all-league selection in his final three years. Meyers won the CIF North Section Championship as an individual in his senior year, and was selected as the Westside League MVP. Meyers was also a standout point guard for the Redskins basketball team. He went on to attend Menlo College in 1977, where he played basketball and golf, and spent the following year at Yuba College, focusing on golf full time. Meyers turned professional after graduating, and competed for four years in Regional Mini Tours, winning two as a professional before retiring. Meyers returned to competitive golf as an amateur in 2004, and went on to compete in the USGA Amateur Championship and British Amateur Championship — becoming one of only two Americans who competed in both.

2016 Team Award
Chung Sun Softball Team

The Chung Sun Softball team was a dynastic group that dominated the local softball league, winning almost every championship over a period of 20 years. The group was comprised of a collection of players that come together to form a formidable team that had pitching, speed, hitting, and sold defense. The team traveled out of the area fairly often, to play in tournaments in Willows, Lodi, Lake Tahoe, Susanville, Gridley and Ukiah, and always fared well. Mainstays of the team included Jim Lemos, Frank Ferraiuolo, Jim Vossler, John Wells, Ed Wells, Chuck Wells, Tom Vedo, John Cheney, Alan Maxey, Doug Correa, Vern Vierra, Dino Nicholau and Ed Martinez. Jim Lee, who passed away earlier this year, was the team’s sponsor and always made sure that they were the best dressed and best equipped team around.

2016 Coach Award
Charles Frederick Grimmer

Grimmer was the Pierce High School football, baseball, and basketball teams from 1936 to 1956, and produced many successful teams in that time. Additionally, Grimmer was the school’s vice-principal and physics, biology, shop, mechanical drawing, and geometry teacher. Grimmer was faced with an unusual challenge in the school’s football team during World War II. Eleven-man football was dropped to six-man, resulting in a different, faster game. Grimmer started a sponsored basketball program after the war to keep the returning boys busy, and soon there were basketball teams dotting the surrounding county. Grimmer was highly regarded as a fine man, who claimed no fame for himself. He asked that his students give him their best, as he gave to them. Coach Grimmer is counted as an inspiration for four current members of the Colusa County Athletic Hall of Fame.

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Brian Pearson is the Managing Editor & Reporter for the Williams Pioneer Review. Brian joined the Williams Pioneer Review in June 2016 and is committed to bringing hyperlocal news to its readers. A few of his projects include reporting on local government and the newly feature sports page. To contact Brian about this article, or for future articles, please email him at brian@colusacountynews.net