South Dakota Sports Hall of Fame announces 15 inductees

Two former National Football League players and the all-time home run champion in South Dakota amateur baseball history headline a group of 15 new inductees into the South Dakota Sports Hall of Fame.

The banquet will be Sept. 26 at the Sioux Falls Convention Center. Tickets for the public event will be available beginning August 16.  Further information will be sent out at that time.

Doug Eggers graduated from Wagner High School and had an outstanding football career at South Dakota State University. He then went on to spend five years with the Baltimore Colts. Darwin Robinson of Redfield was a record setting football player and track & field athlete at Dakota State College. He then became a member of the Washington Redskins. And Kevin Leighton of Madison hit more than 500 home runs in his long amateur baseball career, winning numerous state titles along the way.

Kevin Leighton was a longtime amateur baseball standout in South Dakota.

Other inductees in the Class of 2021 include Sioux Falls residents Bruce Conley, Ronald Mitchell and Gary Reed; Duane Whalen and John Houska of Rapid City; Ken Ruml of Howard; Heather Sieler Goehner of Huron; Laverne Diede of Freeman; Randy Fletcher of Lennox; Jim Miner of Yankton; former Aberdeen standout Wally Johnson; and Steve Withorne (deceased).

Bruce Conley worked alongside John Egan and will become a member of the South Dakota Sports Hall of Fame in 2020.

Conley was a long-time sportswriter at the Argus Leader. Mitchell spent decades as a successful coach for deaf athletes, achieving national acclaim. Reed was a state champion high school coach and well-respected official who worked more than 50 basketball state tournaments. Whalen was a 40-year coach and athletic director who has been an organizer and leader in West River and South Dakota sports for decades. Houska officiated 30 wrestling state tournaments and was a 50-year coach in numerous sports whose teams won 18 state titles.

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