Logan's Lillie to be inducted into state Hall of Fame
By Jim Turner

Posted on January 1, 0001 12:00 AM

Pictures of Lille Mason playing at Olmstead and at WKU can be ordered fromwww.loganandbeyond.com . Click on For Sale, then Pictures, then Girls Basketball.

Former Lady Topper All-American Lillie Mason, a native Logan Countian, will be inducted into the Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame Wednesday night in ceremonies at the Crown Plaza Hotel in Louisville. Mason will be the 19th inductee that is either a former student-athlete or coach, alumnus, or otherwise has had ties to Western Kentucky University.
A four-year letterwinner at WKU (1982-83; 1985-86), Mason earned All-America honors three times. She ended her career with a school-record 2,262 career points - a record that stood for 22 years until it was broken by Crystal Kelly during the 2007-08 campaign. The former Kentucky Miss Basketball from Olmstead High School set 19 Lady Topper career, season and game records during her career on the Hill.
Mason was twice named to the all-Sun Belt Conference team, and was the league's Player of the Year in 1986. She also was named to three Sun Belt all-tournament teams. Mason was the NCAA 1985 Mideast and 1986 East Regional tournament MVP, and helped lead the Lady Toppers to their first two NCAA Tournament Final Four appearances those two seasons.
She was best known for hitting the shot which beat Texas in the Mideast Regional Tournament at Western’s Diddle Arena in 1985. Texas was at the time considered to be the best women’s team ever assembled.
On Wes Strader’s “Wes and the Coach” show on Bowling Green’s ESPN radio (1450 AM) Monday, Paul Sanderford, who coached Mason in those two Final Four seasons, said, “Lillie was 10 years ahead of her time” in her skill set and basketball ability.
Sanderford said she had already been invited to the Olympic Tryouts in 1984 and that there was no doubt she would have been on that Olympic team had she not been injured that year. The injury, however, allowed her to be on the WKU team a year longer and set up two marvelous seasons which featured her, Clemette Haskins, Kami Thomas and Melinda Carlson.
Strader and Sanderford will do their show from 5-6 p.m. in Louisville Wednesday as part of the Hall of Fame festivities.
Very few players-men or women-have been most valuable players of two NCAA regional tournaments. The Lady Toppers played in the Final Four in Austin, Texas her junior year and in Lexington her senior season.
Lillie played varsity basketball for the Olmstead Ramblerettes seven seasons, teaming with her sister Gracie and sons Nancy and Little Jones during several championship years. She was the first Miss Basketball to sign with WKU. The coach who signed her,Eileen Canty Coleman, now lives at Olmstead.
Lillie is the daughter of Elizabeth and the late James Edward Mason. She hopes her mom can make the trip to Louisville for the induction ceremonies. Lillie was coach at OHS by Lugene Rogers.
Mason will be joined in the 2010 class by former University of Louisville quarterbackJeff Brohm, golf trick-shot artist Buddy Demling, University of Kentucky football standout Wilbur Hackett, former UK offensive lineman Dan Neal, UK basketball All-American Mike Pratt, two-time Daytona 500 winner and prominent NASCAR owner/driver Michael Waltrip and longtime Campbellsville women's basketball coachDonna Wise.
The Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame is sponsored by Kentucky Farm Bureau Insurance Co., and all proceeds benefit Kosair Charities.
WKU joins Kentucky and Louisville as the only three schools with more than 10 inductees with ties to their university. In fact, after WKU's 19, the next highest total is five. Members of the Hall (listed alphabetically) with ties to WKU include:
·Nick Denes - Inducted in 1975. WKU football and baseball coach.
·E. A. Diddle - Inducted in 1964. 759-301 record in 42 seasons as WKU men's basketball coach. Also coached baseball, football and women's basketball.
·Jimmy Feix - Inducted in 2004. Former Hilltopper All-America quarterback, head football coach and athletic director.
·Geri Grigsby - Inducted in 1994. Lady Topper letterwinner in 1981. State's all-time leading scorer with 4,385 points at McDowell HS.
·Jack Harbaugh - Inducted in 2003. Head football coach for 14 seasons. Led WKU to 2002 I-AA national championship.
·Clem Haskins - Inducted in 1990. Hilltopper consensus All-American and later men's basketball head coach.
·Clemette Haskins - Inducted in 2006. Three-time Lady Topper All-American. Member of two Final Four teams.
·Bernard (Peck) Hickman - Inducted in 1975. Star basketball athlete for WKU in the 1930s. Later coached at U of L.
·Ted Hornback - Inducted in 1987. Star athlete at WKU. Best known for his many years as an assistant to E.A. Diddle. Also served as tennis coach on the Hill.
·Cawood Ledford - Inducted in 1987. Best known as "The Voice of the Wildcats", but broadcast WKU basketball for WHAS radio during his early years on the air.
·Dale Lindsey - Inducted in 2008. Hilltopper football All-American, and NFL player and coach.
·Lillie Mason - Inducted in 2010. Three-time Lady Topper All-American. Member of two Final Four teams.
·Jim McDaniels - Inducted in 2004. Hilltopper All-American. Led WKU to the 1971 Final Four.
·John Oldham - Inducted in 1986. Hilltopper All-American, men's basketball coach and athletic director. Coach of 1971 Final Four team.
·Gene Rhodes - Inducted in 1997. Former Hilltopper basketball and baseball standout.
·Charles ‘Melvin’ Ruter - Inducted in 2001. WKU basketball and baseball athlete. Best known as one of the leading track and field officials in the world.
·Wes Strader - Inducted in 2002. "Voice of the Hilltoppers" from 1964-2000.
·Van Vance - Inducted in 2003. WKU alumnus. Long-time WHAS Radio play-by-play announcer for the Kentucky Colonels and U of L.
Jaime Walz-Richey - Inducted in 2008. Former Miss Basketball, Played in three NCAA Tournaments with WKU (1997-98, 2000)

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