PASCO — The 4th annual Follow Your Dreams banquet fundraiser at Columbia Basin College was a success Thursday night, with more than $25,000 raised for athletic scholarships and facilities upgrades.
Dr. J. Dale Gier, Ray Washburn, Ed Maxwell and Jim Rodgers were inducted into the school’s athletic hall of fame in front of a crowd estimated at 275.
Some interesting tidbits came about throughout the night.
-- Detroit Tigers pitcher Jeremy Bonderman, a Pasco native, was in attendance and said he’s 100 percent healthy and ready to go this season after recovering from thoracic surgery. ... CBC athletic director Scott Rogers acknowledged all of his coaches during his speech, including volleyball coach John Patrick, who resigned after 22 years at his position. The crowd burst into applause when he was mentioned. ... Steve Farrington, CBC’s baseball coach, said the Hawks sent 23 players on to four-year schools last year. This year’s team should be loaded again. Kevin Komstadius, the East Valley of Yakima slugger, has transferred from the University of Washington to CBC. Meanwhile, Richland’s Cody Shepherd -- who was headed to Washington as a walk-on with the chance to earn a scholarship after one year -- has decided to play for CBC. Farrington said his plan is to play one season for the Hawks, then go on a Mormon mission before coming back to resume playing. ... Former CBC basketball great Byron Beck, the night’s featured speaker who played in the ABA and NBA, revealed that he had wanted to always be a pro baseball player. ... Ex-CBC men’s basketball coach Jim Rodgers, whose teams won five consecutive NWAACC titles in the 1960s, said Ray Washburn — the Burbank native who pitched in the major leagues and was also inducted into the CBC Hall of Fame on Thursday — was “a really good basketball player. He would come back to visit, and we’d play in pickup games.” Rodgers, 75, praised Jack Cooney as the driving force behind getting CBC started. “He took on the Pasco School District to start this school.”