BRISTOL, Tenn. - Three All-Americans, a conference championship team, and one of the most dominant women's basketball players in school history comprise the King Athletics Hall of Fame Class of 2020. The class includes All-Americans Amanda (Davis) Williamson (track & field), Lauren (Perrin) Rudd (women's volleyball) and Alex Mendy (men's soccer), as well as Melissa Ervin (women's basketball) and the 1979-80 men's basketball team.
The Class of 2020 will be formally inducted on Saturday, April 18 at 6:00 p.m., during Dogwood Weekend.
Despite playing only two seasons for the Tornado as a transfer, women's basketball standout Melissa Ervin '06 managed to put together one of the most impressive careers in King's history. She racked up 1,060 points during her career, including 552 in 2004-05, the second-highest single-season total in school history.
Ervin held King's career record for three-point field goals with 194 until 2019 when Kristen Cupples surpassed the record, and Ervin owns the two highest single-season marks with 89 in 2003-04 and 105 in 2004-05. She is also second all-time in three-point field goal percentage, and her 44.1 percent mark from long range stands as the top single-season mark in King history. Ervin earned first team All-Appalachian Athletic Conference (AAC) honors during both of her seasons as a Tornado.
Ervin, along with teammate and fellow King Athletics Hall of Famer Rebecca (Wilson) Hull, led the Tornado to back to back 20-win seasons during her career, tallying 24 wins in 2003-04 and 20 wins in 2004-05. This represents the only back-to-back 20-win seasons for the Tornado since the late 1980s and early 1990s, under the leadership of another King Athletics Hall of Famer, Coach Al Nida.
Amanda (Davis) Williamson '10 becomes the first female track & field athlete in the King Athletics Hall of Fame, following a career that may well make her the most decorated student-athletes in King's history. Williamson earned NAIA All-America honors in 2009, with a third-place finish in the 400 meters, and was a 10-time NCCAA All-American in 2010, when King was ineligible to compete in either the NCAA or NAIA due to their transition to NCAA Division II.
In addition, she won 11 AAC individual championships, qualified for the NAIA Track & Field National Championships 10 times, earned All-AAC honors 14 times, and was named the AAC Most Outstanding Track Athlete in 2009. She led King to three consecutive AAC Conference Championships from 2007-20. In 2010, when King was unable to compete in the NAIA and AAC, she won three NCCAA national championships and led the team to a runner-up finish at the National Championships.
Williamson currently holds school indoor records in the 800 meter run (2:21:98) and 4x400 meter relay (4:01:04), and outdoor school records in the 400 meter dash (54:84) and 4x400 meter relay (3:51:99). After graduating, Williamson spent four seasons as an assistant coach with the Tornado cross country and track & field programs, helping to guide the Tornado to a combined six Conference Carolinas championships. As head coach of the programs from 2015-18, she coached two NCAA National Qualifiers, including one All-American.
For Alex Mendy '08, induction into the King Athletics Hall of Fame is a family affair. His uncle, Gabou Mendy '78, was inducted into the King Athletics Hall of Fame in 2006, while Alex was a student-athlete at King. Alex, a three-time team captain, earned second-team All-AAC in both 2004 and 2005, plus second team all-region honors in 2005. In 2006, he topped that by earning both first-team All-AAC and all-region, as well as earning honorable mention All-America honors.
Mendy found the back of the net 60 times in his career, ranking him second all-time in goals scored behind fellow King Athletics Hall of Famer Lee Ramoon (70 goals). He led the team in goals three times, and led the AAC twice, including 22 goals during the 2006 season, ranking him fifth in the country.
His individual success led to tremendous success for the team, as the Tornado won both an AAC regular season (2005) and postseason (2008) championship during his career. King also advanced to the NAIA Regional semifinals twice (2005 and 2006) and advanced to the NAIA National Championship in 2008.
Lauren (Perrin) Rudd '07 joins a long list of accomplished women's volleyball players as members of the King Athletics Hall of Fame, continuing in a strong tradition of championships and individual honors. The two-time NAIA All-American earned both the AAC and NAIA Region IX Player of the Year honors in 2006, in addition to being a three-time All-AAC and two-time all-region honoree during her career.
She made a combined five All-Tournament teams (AAC and Region XII), including twice being named the AAC Tournament MVP. Lauren also earned multiple AAC and Region XII Player of the Week honors, highlighted by the week of November 15, 2005, when she was AAC, Region XII and the NAIA National Player of the Week. Both the AAC and NAIA recognized her on their scholar athlete teams in 2004, 2005 and 2006, and she was named King's Female Athlete of the Year in both 2005 and 2006.
All three of her seasons on the court saw the Tornado claim the AAC regular season and postseason championships under King Athletics Hall of Fame Coach Susie Toomey, posting an incredible 53-5 conference record, including a perfect 18-0 during her senior season of 2006. On top of the undefeated mark in the AAC, the 2006 squad posted an overall record of 30-12, with nine of the 12 losses coming to nationally ranked teams. Perrin and her 2006 teammates, including fellow King Athletics Hall of Famer Angela Montreuil, led the Tornado to the NAIA National Tournament for the first time since 1999.
The 1979-80 Men's Basketball team posted a 20-9 record, winning the school's second Volunteer State Athletic Conference (VSAC) championship in the process. It was just the second 20-win season in King's history and would be the last 20-win season until 1990-91 when coach Marty Street's team won 21 games. The team qualified for the NAIA District 24 tournament, where they lost to Memphis-based LeMoyne-Owen in the semifinals.
The team was led by King Athletics Hall of Famer David Jennings '82, as well as 1,000-point club member Eric Fugate, and posted a 3-0 record against regional rival Lincoln Memorial University. The 1979-80 season included a pair of last-second wins, highlighted by a 20-foot jumper by Tim Dean to give the Tornado a 69-68 win over Milligan on January 24, and by King Athletics Hall of Fame Coach Al Nida's 400th career win on February 14.
The Bristol Herald Courier consistently praised the team, both for its "stifling" zone defense and versatility to run out both "big" and "small" lineups, depending on the opponent. In addition, the late 1970s were challenging times for King financially, and Bristol Herald Courier articles made numerous references to the team and their success being a rallying point for the campus and community.
The Induction Ceremony for the Class of 2020 will be held in the Student Center Complex on Saturday, April 18 at 6:00 p.m.