4 inducted to Pittsfield MMQB Hall of Fame; 14 awarded Codey Scholarships
The Hall of Fame Class of 2017 consists of Chris Clark, Dempsey Quinn, Joe Woitkoski and Jay Horth. Jack Quinn was on hand accepting the award for his son, Dempsey, while Brad Horth was present to accept on behalf of his father, Jay. The Hall of Fame serves as a resource of fundraising for the scholarships, which were renamed in honor of Codey a few years back.
"The club's continuous mission for over 50 years is to promote the spirit of football and the recognition of fine student-athletes in our local high schools," wrote Woitkowski, the MMQB Club president, in a letter to the Eagle.
The Codey Scholarship was awarded to a host of Pittsfield and Taconic High School football players.
Representing the Braves were Luke Maynard, Hunter Johnston, Javier Osorio, Cedric Rose, Sal Amaral, Teyler Hiestand, Nikos Gian, Chris Russell, Damien Rivenburg and Drew Armstrong.
The Generals recipients were Jamal Beda, Edwin Rodriguez, Bryce Banister and Marco DiNicola.
Maynard and Banister were each awarded for being the outstanding lineman for their respective teams.
Rodriguez was elected as the recipient of the Jim Clark Award. Named for the 1988 Hall of Fame inductee, the award is a scholarship chosen by the Clark family to go to a student-athlete who best represents what Jim, a 1967 St. Joe graduate, was as a player on and off the field.
This year's Hall of Fame nods went to Clark and Quinn as players, Horth as a coach and Woitkoski as an official. Horth is just the 14th coach inducted, while Woitkoski makes seven officials.
Clark is a 2002 graduate of Taconic High School, where he played defensive end and guard. He helped the Braves to a combined record of 15-3 during his junior and senior campaigns and was selected All-Berkshire at DE both seasons. His senior year earned him an All-Western Mass nod and the team's defensive MVP award, on top of a trip to the Chowder Bowl All-Star game.
Quinn captained Saint Joseph his junior season, before transferring to Avon Old Farms. The quarterback and defensive back was All-Berkshire and All-Western Mass while with the Crusaders. He was later a three-year starter at safety for Cornell University, and was a captain for the Big Red as a senior. Quinn spent time coaching at St. Joe and Berkshire School, and is currently the running backs coach at Brown University.
Horth passed away at the age of 61, but his son, Brad, was on hand to accept the induction. The elder Horth spent time coaching Dalton Youth Football before beginning an 18-year tenure with St. Joe, where he coached the offensive line and special teams, working the Wing-T. His Crusaders teams played in four Super Bowls and won two. He co-founded the CYC Saints with Gary Bianchi, which continue to this day under the YMCA.
"Jay was the man behind the scenes, positively impacting more young men than anyone can truly know," wrote Woitkoski. "A great advocate of football and believed that there was nothing better than an afternoon spent outside coaching young men."
Woitkoski himself was inducted ahead of his 47th year as an official. He began officiating games in 1971 and spent time working at the college Division II and III level, including several Williams-Amherst rivalry contests and high school championships. He served as president of the Western Mass Chapter of the ECAC.
This was a second induction for Woitkoski, who was elected to the Hall of Fame in 1983 as a quarterback.
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