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 - a Staunton, Va., Newa-Loader, Sunday, January...
a Staunton, Va., Newa-Loader, Sunday, January 1, 18M Tony Randolph finds himself at Chaminade Tv- -17 TONY RANDOLPH By NANCY SORRELLS SUA Writer HONOLULU - For Tony Randolph more than Just miles separate the streets of our nation's captitol from the hardwood court at Chaminade University in Hawaii. The years in between have meant a lot of growing up and a lot of maturing, but the former Robert E. Lee High School basketball standout and 1981 Staunton Leader player-of-the-year is beginning to find himself at the nationally-ranked NAIA college called Chaminade. One year ago sports fans were shaking their heads quizzically when then the number-one ranked University of Virginia was upset by the Chaminade Silverswords. This year it was the 16th-ranked Louisville Cardinals who suffered at the hands of the scrappy Chaminade squad last Monday in the Western Airlines Chaminade Classic. Randolph has been instrumental in pushing the tiny 900-student school into the limelight as last year he outplayed his boyhood rival Ralph Samapson and tallied 19 points in the upset win. Against Louisville the 6-foot-S, 215-pound strong forward upped that performance with a 22-point effort. Things have not always come easily for the junior psychology major, however. Randolph spent his early years in Washington, D.C in an area he describes as "really rough. Those were hard times. The streets weren't safe after nine o'clock." When he was only 11 he suffered through the shock of losing both his parents within six months. After spending some time with various relatives, he wound up with his aunt, Lucille Harris, of Staunton. He arrived in Staunton with a lot of athletic ability and a big chip on his shoulder. "It was hard to come from D.C. to Staunton because D.C is very wild and Staunton is very conservative and very peaceful. It took me a while to adjust because both my parents had passed away and this made me feel that the world owed me something. "My aunt helped me a lot and has been a major part of my life. She taught me that things were going to be hard, but you can make them good also." In retrospect, he notes the years in Staunton, which he still calls home, were good years once he adjusted to the slower-paced life. "I tell people here about Staunton and I brag about the Shenandoah Valley. I still have that 'Fighting Leemen Spirit' and I'll try my best to continue that" At Lee High Randolph admits he had an attitude problem at first. "Coach Paul Hatcher helped me a lot with my game, both my offense and my defense, but he also helped me a lot as a person with my attitude," Randolph explains. He added that counsel from both Hatcher and the Lee administration helped him to mature. By the time his senior campaign rolled around, Randolph's 19 points and 12 rebounds a game spurred the Leemen to the state finals and several schools were Interested in him for college play. It was Panhandle State in Goodwill, Okla. that won the recruiting battle, but after a year, Randolph decided to move to Hawaii where his brother was stationed in the Air Force. "This is a really beautiful place," he said of the Pacific Islands. "The people here are caring and they take you as a person. Because there are so many cultures here, they have helped me understand people." Although his basketball gains have been significant, Randolph says he feels his biggest gains since entering Chaminade have been as a person. "I've improved academically since high school and I've learned a lot about myself. I have learned to deal with people." Of course, his basketball is not to be overlooked either as this season he was named to the Street and Smith honorable mention team for small colleges. "It was a great award," the soft-spoken Randolph said. "I had no idea I would get it and was really surprised. "I think the U.Va. game had a big effect on the voting," be said in referring to the national exposure Chaminade received after tripping the Cavaliers. Randolph remains humble about that victory, however, despite the the fact that he outplayed the three-time NCAA player-of-the-year, Ralph Sampson. "I knew Ralph and I knew his family," he said in recalling the days when Sampson played for rival Harrisonburg High School. "We had played together a lot and playing against him was like seeing an old friend; I didn't have to do any adjusting." Randolph is quick to add several comments about that fabled contest. "Even though we beat them, Ralph is still the number-one player in the nation. I have a lot of respect for him; he is one tough player." Looking back over the past year he notes that although U.Va. was "a b'ig win, this one (Louisville) feels better because it proves that last FORD TRACTORS S EQUIPMENT year wasn't a fluke. We are building a reputation as a good program." The 9-J Silverswords are indeed no fluke as they were the preseason favorites to win the NAIA championship this year after being stopped in the semifinals last year by the eventual champion, Charleston. "We'd like to finish as high as we can, and we would like to take the NAIA crown. There are a lot of tough schools in the NAIA that don't get recognized." One school that is finally getting long due recognition is Chaminade and part of the responsibilty goes to Randolph's IS points and eight rebounds per game. That average is enough to make him the second leading scorer on the team and his play is drawing the attention of professional scouts from both the NBA and European teams. "It has always been my dream to play in the pros," Randolph, whose brother-in-law Larry Jones played for the 76era, said. "But if the pros are not to be then I hope to be successful in whatever I do." One person who says he is certain that Randolph is headed for success Is Lee head coach Hatcher. "He has done a lot of growing up. It is great to see a kid have that much success after knowing he has had a tough time reaching the top. I'm as pleased for Tony Randolph as for any player I've ever had. He has worked hard to get where he is at. I'm tremendously proud of what he has accomplished because he has kept battling," the Lee mentor said. Randolph has certainly traveled a long way since he was a confused boy of 11; and he has learned a lot about life. "I have learned to understand that the world doesn't owe me anything. If I want something, I have to go out and get it." o Sales in ATLANTA State Coach no decisive North discover a tense that -the season. Bowden quarterback collegiate from with two passes to scored the touchdown in over the nationally Despite going to 7-5, thoughts Seminoles' final a 53-14 hands of "This but there's redeemed Florida help though television." "Those watching the that They don't we do," he Thomas allowed Canine Parvo Rabies Canine Spay Castration HeartwormExam Heartworm U.S. 11

Clipped from The News Leader, 01 Jan 1984, Sun,  Main Edition,  Page 16

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The News Leader
(Staunton, Virginia)
01 Jan 1984, Sun  • Main Edition  • Page 16