Rockdale,TX Class of 1965
Rockdale TX Sports Hall of Honor
Honoring past athletes from Rockdale High School and Aycock High School
Thanks to the Rockdale Reporter, Mike Brown, Editor for permission to use these articles and photos
Rockdale Reporter Established 1893
The Reporter has some great pictures of the ceremonies on-line
The four new inductees into the Rockdale Sports Hall of Honor left their respective marks in all different sports, at all different levels.
Freddie Cates, Travis Ortega, Theresa Tindle and P.J. Williams make up the 2015 class of distinguished honorees.
The ninth Hall of Honor class increases the number of inductees to 87.
The Hall of Honor acknowledges athletes and contributors from Rockdale and Aycock schools.
The only problem with inducting P.J. Williams into the Rockdale Sports Hall of Honor, is that it might require three or four plaques to properly record all his accomplishments.
You wouldn’t get a lot of argument in calling Patrick James Williams the greatest athlete in RHS history.
His athletic journey has taken him to many venues and many settings. After a celebrated high school career in which he starred in four sports, the lanky 6-foot-3, 180-pound Williams (RHS ‘95) chose to play professionally in his first love—baseball.
After playing in the minor leagues in the Seattle Mariners organization, Williams switched gears and returned to college to play football for Mary Hardin-Baylor, nine years after graduating from high school and helped turn the brand new program into a national powerhouse.
He set two NCAA return records while there and was named an All-American.
While at Rockdale, Williams made two trips to the state track meet, capturing an unprecedented six medals (three gold)—and five alone at the 1995 meet in which he scored 39 points by himself.
Williams led the Tigers to the state basketball tournament in 1995 for only the second time in the school’s history.
He was twice All-State in football at two different positions and set several school records in receiving, some of which stood for almost two decades.
Williams has been a head coach in baseball and basketball at the high school level.
He joins his father, the great Don Wesley, in the Hall.
No matter what sport she chose to participate in, Theresa Tindle excelled at a high level.
During her time at Rockdale High School, the talented Tindle pulled off a rare trifecta, being named first-team all-district in volleyball, basketball and softball—three different times.
In addition, Tindle (RHS ‘96) was a two-time All- State selection in both basketball and softball. She is one of only two Rockdale girls to be named All-State in two different sports.
She scored 1,001 points in her basketball career and was the three-time district most valuable player as well as being named newcomer of the year.
During her time, the Lady Tigers won three straight district championships and reached the regional finals her senior year.
Tindle played on the very first Lady Tigers’ softball team and in her three years, they captured three straight district titles and were 54-20.
After high school, Tindle received a basketball scholarship to play at McClennan Community College.
As a receiver, if Travis Ortega happened to line up to cover you, you might want to tip toe to the other side of the field.
With the body of a lineman or linebacker, Travis Ortega used his size to punish all who crossed his path.
The 6-foot-3, 220-pound Ortega (RHS ‘96)—who could run a 4.4 in the 40-yard dash—was an All- State defensive back and district MVP at Rockdale. As a first-team all-district quarterback, Ortega accumulated 1,300 yards of total offense.
He also played in the prestigious Texas High School Coaches Association all-star game and was all-Brazos Valley.
The grandson of Texas coaching legend D.X. Bible, Ortega went on to have a stellar career in college at Rice University where he was a four-year starter and was team captain his senior year.
The hard-hitting Ortega was an All-Western Athletic Conference strong safety two times and also an academic All-American.
He was named the WAC player of the week after posting a career-high 15 tackles and returning an interception 64 yards for a touchdown against crosstown rival Houston.
His viscous hit on a Hawaii receiver—in which Ortega’s helmet flew off—is a Youtube favorite.
He was the three-time winner of the prestigious Arthur Ashe Award. He also played in the Blue- Gray college all-star game.
Ortega was signed by the Dallas Cowboys twice as a free agent and played three years in the Canadian Football League for Winnipeg.
An injury could not keep him down and a lack of size could not stop him from outdistancing everyone else.
Undersized for a discus thrower at 6-foot-1 and 185 pounds, Freddie Cates made up for a lack of girth by becoming a throwing technician.
The latest in a long line of outstanding Rockdale weightmen, Tiger mentor and teacher T.A. Weems—a state champion himself— described Cates throwing form as “perfect”.
Cates (RHS ‘97) injured his knee during the football season of his senior year and it was uncertain whether he would be able to compete again. Hard work and tenacity insured he would.
Cates captured a gold medal in the discus in 1997 at the UIL state track meet while setting the school record of 186 feet, 3 inches which was still in place and the old mark had been standing for over 20 years.
Cates had won a silver medal in the discus in 1996.
Cates received the Dan Yezak most conscientious award and Jay Bob Roe most courageous award at RHS.
He received a track and field scholarship to Tarleton State University where he took up the javelin, an event that was new to him. His best finish was third in nationals.
Cates was a three time All-American at Tarleton and set the school record of 214 feet, 8 inches which still stood.
He earned a masters degree in education with business in administration at Tarleton.
Freddie Cates (left) and Theresa Tindle
will join the latest class of the Hall of Honor.
Rockdale Tiger standouts Travis Ortega (above left) and P.J. Williams (above right)
thrived on three different levels: high school, college and professionally.
Four inductees are unique in their talents
Rockdale Reporter - 2015-10-29
The 2015 Rockdale Sports Hall of Honor inductees will be honored at a banquet Oct. 30 at 4:30 at the high school and the public is encouraged to attend. They will also be recognized at the Tiger football game.
Inductees Freddie Cates, P.J. Williams and Travis Ortega discuss old times at the Rockdale Hall of Honor ceremonies Friday.
Upper Right: Freddie Cates
Middle Right: P.J. Williams
Lower Right: Travis Ortega
Left: Bobby Joe Tindle