Last month marked the 38th anniversary of one of the greatest sports feats ever accomplished locally when the Quicks Run Softball Team won the Kentucky Open Softball Championship.
This legendary team was formed in 1966 by teenager Mick Bennett, who ran the team until his death in 1998, accumulating nearly 2000 victories.
In the early days, the team was made up of members of Quicks Run families like the Coxes, Ierys, Wills, Bennetts, and Kennedys, who all lived within a few miles of each other.
Later, players were added outside of Quicks Run, including Mason Co. In 1979 the team consisted of players with power, speed, and defense that led to the ultimate goal, a state championship.
Quicks Run teams earned the reputation as a classy group of people who beat you by playing and acting the right way.
In winning the championship in 1979, Quicks Run had to defeat the best 32 teams in the state. After losing their first game on Friday night in Paducah, the team won two games on Saturday, and then on Sunday in 90-degree heat, the team won 8 straight games to win the championship.
The picture below is the 1979 team of lifelong friends, some who are now gone.
Left to right bottom row- Mick Bennett- Playing the right way and doing the right things were more important to him than talent. Roger “Red” Iery- I could write a book about brother Red.
He could get out of bed at 3 in the morning after ginsenging all day and hit line drives all over the place.
Phil Grayson- Good player from a big softball family. Jerry Tucker- a Little guy with unbelievable power. One time a coach pulled the left fielder way when Jerry came up and he hit it 30 feet over the fence. That was pretty funny.
Howard Trumbo- One of our biggest fans. One of Howard’s funny lines was whenever someone on our team would hit a little popup, Howard would say. “Wipe the blood off of that one.”
Howard brought us the news that my good friend, Wendell Henderson, had passed away while we were in Paducah. Howard was also a big Quicks Run fan.
Harry Lewis- Great combination of speed and power. Tom Cox, Jr.- My old childhood buddy and my best man, started playing on the team at age 11. Like Harry, Tommy had the great combination of speed and power.
Second Row- Billy Barbour- One of the best outfielders and fastest runners I ever saw. I never knew of any other 150 lb guy who could hit a softball 300 ft.
Larry Wills- My double-play partner for over 20 years. Smart and underrated. He once had 17 straight hits, which was a team record until I got 24 straight hits.
Joe Pollett- Being named the MVP of the state tournament at age 18. What else needs to be said.
Tom Cox, Sr- The old man at age 28 when he joined the team and one of the best athletes to ever come out of Lewis County.
Bob Iery- Joined the team in 1967 at age 13. Since I’m writing this, I can’t say a whole lot, but people tell me I could run, throw, and play a pretty good shortstop. Plus, I did finish with the most career hits. Somewhere around 3200.
Wendell “Skinky” Pollett- Great guy and a true softball superstar. One of the great honors of my life was being asked to be a pallbearer at his funeral.
Gary “Jay” Iery – The best defensive pitcher I ever saw. Steve Ullerly- Steve played many positions. One of his funny lines was, ” If I was Polish, I would be a utility pole.”
At one time, I wanted to write a book about this team, but when Mick died, I never got around to it. I think it would have been really interesting reading. This was posted here with the permission of the original author Bob Iery.
© 2017 All Rights Reserved Paul Cox