Baseball Wall of Fame Dinner Set for Oct. 18
Oct. 12, 2007
RENO, Nev. - The Fresno State Baseball Annual Wall of Fame Dinner will honor former baseball greats Galen Bowman (Outfielder, 1948-50), Mark Hance (Infielder 1973), Gene Graves (Pitcher, 1961), and the 1961 Bulldog team (38-9 No. 2 Ranking) on October 18, 2007. The ceremony will be held at Pardini's, 2257 W. Shaw Ave., in Fresno, Calif.
Galen Bowman was on the first team coached by Bulldog legend Pete Beiden in 1948. After the Bulldogs when 9-20 in 1947, Bowman helped lead them to a 26-11 record and a second place finish in the California Collegiate Athletic Association (CCAA). The 1949 team also finished second in the CCAA at 29-9 and the 1950 team won the conference with a 29-13 record. Bowman was an All-CCAA first-team selection in 1949. On Feb. 2, 1949, the Bulldogs beat UC Davis by 28 runs, the largest margin in school history to this day.
The 1973 Fresno State Male Athlete of the Year and first-team All-Pacific Coast Athletic Association (PCAA) selection, Mark Hance, led the Bulldogs to a sixth place finish in the PCAA with a 31-24 record under head coach Bob Bennett. Hance, a third baseman, hit .422 on the year, the third-highest percentage for one season in school history. He is also tied for eighth in the single-season record books with six triples. With 46 runs batted in (RBI's), Hance led the team and up to that point set the school record for RBI's in a season. His record was broken in 1978 by Jim Rothford (67). He was selected by the Los Angeles Dodgers in the fourth round of the Major League draft on June 4, 1974.
The 1961 Bulldog team compiled a 36-9 record, the third best record in coach Beiden's 21-year career at Fresno State. Fresno State was ranked as high as No. 2 by Collegiate Baseball and fell in the District 8 Championship to No. 1-ranked and eventual national champion USC in three games. The Bulldogs finished the year ranked fourth in the country.
Pitcher Gene Graves was a member of the 1961 team and led the Bulldogs with 10 wins, a 2.44 earned run average (ERA) and 83 strikeouts. Graves was a first-team All-CCAA selection.
A special video tribute will honor the contributions of Japanese American baseball players and coaches from Fresno State who will be in attendance. Following will be a special ten minute screening by Kerry Yo Nakagawa of the movie American Pastime.
"Join the State - Fresno State!" - For more information on the two-time defending WAC Champion baseball team log on to www.gobulldogs.com.