Bethany College Athletics Set to Induct New Hall of Fame Members on Homecoming Weekend

BETHANY, W.Va. – Bethany College is set to induct four new members as a part of its 43rd Annual Athletic Hall of Fame Class.

The 2022 inductees include John Bowers, class of 1996 (Football); Robert “Bobby” Hartong, class of 1992 (Golf); Janice Masters, class of 2004 (Softball); and Maria Vallone, class of 2013 (Softball).

These new members of the Bethany Athletic Hall of Fame will be inducted at the Hall of Fame brunch on Friday, Sept. 30 at 9:30 a.m. in Commencement Hall and will also be recognized at Don Ault Field at Bison Stadium the following day during halftime of the Homecoming football game against Thiel.

John Bowers, class of 1996 (Wellsburg, W.Va. | Brooke High School), was a four-year letter winner and a three-year starter as an offensive lineman for the Bison. He was named co-captain of the 1995, 7-3 team, which posted its best record at Bethany College since 1981. As a senior he earned All-PAC Second Team honors and was a member of the PAC Academic Honor Roll and an ECAC Scholar-Athlete. He graduated with a Bachelor’s in Communications and Public Relations and earned his Masters degree from WVU in Special Education. Bowers is a member of the Brooke High School Athletic Hall of Fame (2007). He currently serves as the athletic director and assistant principal in the Monongalia County School district.

Robert “Bobby” Hartong, class of 1992 (Wheeling, W.Va. | Wheeling Park), was a four-year letter winner for the Bethany College golf team. Hartong was a two-time all-conference honoree, which included helping the Bison to their second, second-place finish in school history in 1991. In 1991, Hartong earned a spot on the All-PAC Second-Team. The following season, Hartong earned the league’s individual crown, capturing a first-place finish and PAC MVP honors. He was selected to the 60th Anniversary All PAC Team. He currently serves as an assistant coach for the Bison golf program and is the President at W.A. Wilson and Sons Inc.

Janice Masters, class of 2004 (Lansing, Ohio | Bellaire St. John’s), was a four-time all-PAC selection. Masters earned Second Team All-PAC as a freshman and followed that with First Team honors in her next three seasons. During her senior campaign in 2004, Masters was named the conference MVP as she hit .344 with 43 RBI and a slugging percentage of .555. She helped lead the Bison to four-straight conference titles during her tenure, which included a trip to the NCAA Division III World Series during her sophomore season. She holds school records for RBIs (145) and is tied for career record in home runs (17). Her 168 career hits also rank eighth all time. She is the single-season record holder for homeruns (8), RBIs (48) and doubles (18). Masters serves as the Commissioner of the Women’s National Football Conference.

Maria Vallone, class of 2013 (Rochester, NY | Webster Schroeder), was a four-time First Team All-PAC selection for the Bison. During her freshman year, she started in 48-of-50 games and had a .425 batting average. In 2011, she helped the Bison earn a PAC conference championship. In that year, Vallone hit .458 with a Bethany record 65 hits to go along with 23 RBI. Arguably her best season came as a junior in 2012, when she hit .470 with a school-record .540 on- base percentage. Following that season, she became just the fourth Bison in history to earn All-American distinction with a Third Team selection. Vallone holds school records in average (.425), hits (222), doubles (51). She is second all-time with 128 runs scored and walks with 70 and is fifth all-time with 98 RBIs and 522 at-bats. She is a member of the USA Team Handball Women’s National Team.

Bethany College inducted its first hall of fame class in 1977 and has added a class each year since, with the lone exception occurring in 1986, when no inductions occurred.

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