Biographies of 2017 Allen Park Sports Hall of Fame inductees | News

The Allen Park Sports Hall of Fame inducted eight new members during an Oct. 30 Hall of Fame rededication ceremony.

RELATED: Allen Park rededicates its Sports Hall of Fame

PHOTOS: Allen Park Sports Hall of Fame Rededication Ceremony

Here are some highlights of the latest inductees:

•Mario “Mike” Fregonara – U.S. Army basketball player; played semipro basketball and football for the Oakwood Blue Jackets; coached the Bulldogs, APAC, MAC and Allen Park South junior high football team, plus the Blue Jackets.

•Ron Howle – All-State, All-Area and All-League in basketball at Allen Park High School; set the school’s single-game scoring record; played college basketball at West Texas State University; recognized by many as the best one-on-one basketball player out of Allen Park.

•Glenn Knight – Outstanding Allen Park High School baseball player who was drafted by the Detroit Tigers; coached Allen Park youth in baseball, basketball and football; founder of the Downriver Basketball Leagues for girls and boys; founder of the girls Downriver Fastpitch Softball League.

•William Matakas – Played on Allen Park youth, school and collegiate championship teams; quarterback, safety and punter on title teams at Allen Park High School; also played for high school championship tennis and basketball teams; All-State in both football and tennis; played football and tennis at the University of Michigan; served as coach, umpire, employee and elected official; past member of the Allen Park Board of Education and current city mayor.

•Gordon Miller – All-State, All-Area and All-League in football at Allen Park High School; coached the Michigan Wildcats baseball team, APAC baseball and Allen Park Bulldogs; long-serving and current member of the Allen Park Board of Education.

•The late Walter Owens – Founding officer of the Allen Park Athletic League and Melvindale Athletic Club (MAC) serving the Melvindale-Northern Allen Park area; coached the Allen Park Athletic Club Rangers to a state championship and two MAC teams to the state finals; coached two Allen Park Mickey Mantle League all-star teams to national championships; coached and developed dozens of college baseball players and three professional players. (Now deceased, he was represented at the induction by his wife, Audrey, and son, Walt.)

•Douglas Shepherd – All-State, All-Area and All-League in football at Allen Park High School; was the first Allen Park lineman named team most valuable player; earned football scholarship at both the University of Montana and Eastern Michigan University; has served more than 25 years on the Parks and Recreation Commission, the majority of those years as chairman; advocate, spokesman and integral part of the building of the Community Center.

•Carson Smith – Coached youth sports for more than 30 years; APAC baseball player coach and board member; coached Wyandotte junior varsity American Legion baseball; Allen Park High School boys and girls junior varsity coach; coached Downriver Basketball League, Allen Park recreation and Mead Elementary School, Allen Park Bulldogs and Melvindale Indians; community and civic leader.

RELATED: Allen Park Sports Hall of Fame has inducted dozens over the years

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