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Offered February 12, 2002
Commending Paul Hatcher.
Patrons-- Saxman and Landes; Senator: Hanger

WHEREAS, Paul Hatcher, the boys' basketball coach at Robert E. Lee High School in Staunton since 1968, has led his team to more victories than any other basketball coach in the history of the Virginia High School League; and

WHEREAS, with more than 670 victories--and counting--Coach Paul Hatcher has the highest winning percentage among basketball coaches--nearly 83 percent; and

WHEREAS, a graduate of Bridgewater College, Paul Hatcher was a four-year starter and team captain on the Bridgewater basketball team and a four-year starter on the golf team; and

WHEREAS, only two years after graduating from Bridgewater, Paul Hatcher was hired to coach the Fighting Leemen despite no varsity coaching experience, and in the 34 years since, Robert E. Lee High School's boys' basketball team has never experienced a losing season; and

WHEREAS, on two occasions, in 1983-84 and in 1989-90, Coach Hatcher's Fighting Leemen have experienced undefeated seasons, capped by Virginia High School League Group AA state championships; and

WHEREAS, under Coach Hatcher, Robert E. Lee's Fighting Leemen have won more than 20 regular season championships in the Valley District, are perennial contenders for district and Region II championships, have qualified for the state tournament 11 times, and have reached the state championship game six times; and

WHEREAS, Coach Hatcher's teams have averaged 20 wins per season during his tenure, and he has been honored repeatedly as Coach of the Year at the district, region, and state levels; and

WHEREAS, in 1995 Coach Paul Hatcher was inducted into the Virginia High School League Hall of Fame, and in 1990 Robert E. Lee High School's gymnasium was renamed the Paul Hatcher Gymnasium; and

WHEREAS, with a Hall of Fame career already attained, Coach Paul Hatcher continues to inspire the young men of Robert E. Lee High School to levels of excellence unsurpassed by any other high school in the Commonwealth; now, therefore, be it

RESOLVED by the House of Delegates, the Senate concurring, That the General Assembly commend Coach Paul Hatcher on becoming the winningest high school basketball coach in the history of the Virginia High School League; and, be it

RESOLVED FURTHER, That the Clerk of the House of Delegates prepare a copy of this resolution for presentation to Coach Paul Hatcher as an expression of the General Assembly's congratulations and best wishes for continued success.

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