DAVIS, ROTILIO SELECTED FOR OVAC HALL OF FAMEMonday, January 02, 2017
It didn’t matter whether it was locally, on the state level or in college, Bellaire’s Nate Davis and St. John Central’s April Rotilio shined brightly each time they competed.
They reached such impressive heights that they’re both headed for the Ohio Valley Athletic Conference Hall of Fame, representing the decade of the 2000s this summer.
In their first year on the ballot, Davis and Rotilio will be formally inducted into the OVAC Hall of Fame, which is sponsored by Robinson Automotive Group, on Saturday, Aug. 19.
The annual induction ceremony will again be held at WesBanco Arena.
This is the third year in a row that the Hall of Fame committee is releasing the honorees every two weeks until April rather than waiting until later in the spring to announce the honorees. The athletes representing the decade of the 1990s will be published on Jan. 15.
Here’s a capsule look at the honorees:
NATE DAVIS, Bellaire (Class of 2006) — It didn’t matter the sport or season because this former Big Reds’ standout just got it done.
A four-year letterman in basketball and a three-year letterman in football, Davis re-wrote the Big Reds record books in both sports.
As a basketball player, Davis did it both on the inside and outside for Gene Ammirante’s team. After helping to get the Big Reds to the OHSAA Division III State Tournament in 2004, Davis led the Big Reds back to the regional in 2005 and to an undefeated regular season in 2006.
He finished his prep career with 2,562 points, which ranks ninth in Ohio history. Davis did much more than score the ball. He grabbed 1,175 rebounds, which ranks seventh in the Buckeye State and he passed out more than 500 assists.
During his senior campaign, Davis averaged 38.9 points a contest en route to first-team all-Ohio accolades. He was a finalist for Mr. Basketball and was the Eastern District, District 12 and OVAC Class 3A player of the year. He took part in both the Ohio North-South and Ohio-Kentucky All-Star games.
On the football field, Davis was just as impressive for Coach John Magistro’s teams.
In his career, Davis completed 454-of-925 passes for 7,345 yards and 81 touchdowns. As a sophomore, Davis guided the Big Reds to the Division IV state semifinals, throwing for 2,296 yards and 22 touchdowns.
The Big Reds returned to the state semifinals in 2005 when Davis passed for 2,740 yards and 35 touchdowns.
Davis was Ohio’s Division IV Offensive Player of the Year as a senior.
He was a first-team all-Ohioan as both a junior and senior and earned second-team accolades as a sophomore. He was first-team all-OVAC three times and took part in both the Ohio North-South and OVAC All-Star games.
Along with his football and basketball prowess, Davis also lettered in baseball. He helped lead the Big Reds to the regional championship in 2003 when he was the club’s every day catcher.
As a senior, Davis went out for track and won the OVAC discus title with a toss of 140-ft-9.
Davis inked a scholarship to Ball State University and won the starting quarterback job as a true freshman. All told, he spent three seasons as the Cardinals’ starting quarterback before announcing he’d forego his senior season to enter the NFL Draft.
At Ball State, Davis passed for 9,233 yards and 74 touchdowns.
He was named the Mid American Conference’s Offensive Player of the Year in 2008 and a first-team all-MAC selection. He was a finalist for the Manning Award and also the Ball State team MVP both as a sophomore and junior. As a junior, he led the Cardinals to a 12-0 record and berth in the MAC Championship Game.
After opting to enter the draft, Davis was selected in the fifth round by the San Francisco 49ers. He made the team as a rookie. He was released and later signed to the team’s practice squad in 2010. He also signed contracts with the Colts and Seahawks, but has spent the last several seasons in an indoor league in Texas, playing for the Amarillo Venom.
Davis becomes the second member of his family to reach the Hall of Fame. His brother, Jose, was inducted in 2007.
APRIL ROTILIO, St. John Central (Class of 2006) — Speed was the name of the game for this former Lady Irish track and field standout.
Rotilio is one of the area’s most decorated track and field competitors, having compiled a whopping 12 medals as the OHSAA state meet.
The premier event in Rotilio’s career was the 400 meter dash. She placed four times at the state meet, including earning gold as both a junior and senior. As a senior, she needed a furious kick in the final 100 meters to win the title in a school-record time of 56.09. Along with the two golds, Rotilio also earned a silver in the lap dash in 2004 and a fourth place in 2003.
Her speed was limited to the 400, however. She was twice a bronze medalist in the 100 meter dash and once a bronze medalist in the 200. She briefly owned the Division III state record in the 200 meter dash when she won the OVAC title in 24.87. She owns the SJC record (12.12) in the 100 meters, too.
Rotilio’s third state title came when she anchored the 4×2 team in 2006.
Along with her state prowess, Rotilio set the regional record in the 400 meter dash and also won 11 OVAC event titles as she led her teams to four consecutive conference championships. The Lady Irish finished as Division III state runnerup twice during her career.
Along with the outdoor success she enjoyed, Rotilio was the 400 meter indoor state runnerup in 2006.
After her prep career, Rotilio competed at West Virginia University, earning all-American honors twice during the indoor campaign.
She was a member of the Mountaineers’ Distance Medley Relay, which achieved the honor at the nationals along with a 4×4 team that scored in the NCAA Championship Meet.
As an individual with the Mountaineers, Rotilio still owns a pair of school records. She set the indoor and outdoor 400 meter dash benchmarks in 54.29 and 52.71, respectively.
Rotilio also earned Academic All-American honors during her career in Morgantown.
Before concentrating fully on track at St. John, Rotilio lettered twice in basketball.
April, who is married to former West Virginia football player Tom Contraguerro, lives in Wheeling and works as a physical therapist. The couple has two children.