George “Archie” Rice*

George “Archie” Rice*

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George “Archie” Rice began his incredible career in tennis as a sophomore at Napa High School. He was captain and first singles in both his junior and senior years and teamed with friend Bob Heflin in first doubles. In their senior year, Rice and his partner Heflin went to the finals of the regional CIF tournament before losing. It was the most significant showing for a Napa High tennis team up to that time. Rice made a career out of the sport of tennis. In addition to a fine amateur playing career highlighted by consecutive wins over the great Don Budge to win the Oakland City Championship in 1930 and 1931, he owned and operated a tennis shop for over 35 years, which was frequented by many of the great names in tennis – Pancho Gonzalez, Pancho Segura, Jack Kramer, Lew Hoad, Frank Sedgman and Maureen Connolly, among others. Rice had many amateur doubles titles to his credit and one report says that Ron English, one of the founders of the Napa High School Athletic Hall of Fame Foundation, and a great tennis player in his own right, was a doubles partner of Rice at one time. He was posthumously inducted into the Northern California Tennis Association Hall of Fame in 1992. With his induction into the Napa High School Athletic Hall of Fame, Rice becomes the earliest Napa High School graduate to be so honored.