Living here in ‘Allen’-town

“I can’t tell you anything about those records, other than the fact that the first and second hitters were doing their job,” he said. “I can remember Mike Majeski was the first hitter, and he could fly. If he got a hit, I can bet that he was on second or third by the time that I got up to bat. I don’t think that hurt a lot.”

On the other hand, Allen was so dominant it took just one call from Fontana to secure a full scholarship at Florida Southern College. The Moccasins were coming off of an NCAA Division II national championship in 1985 and went on to beat the division I champion in a best-of-three series. Without even seeing him swing a bat, they offered Allen a full scholarship.

“I remember my father telling me that a small school was a good thing, and I don’t think I would have done as well in one of those 30,000 or 40,000 student schools,” he said. “When you look for great opportunities, this was one from the best baseball school in the country. It was a small school, and I wasn’t paying anything to go there. I didn’t need to look any further.”

Once again, Allen said that it didn’t come easily. Once again, he worked his way onto the varsity lineup as a rookie. He led the team in hitting during his freshman preseason. On opening day, he was named to the starting lineup.

“You’re either 100 percent in, playing that sport and working every day on it, or you’re just playing to have fun,” he said. “I think you’re born with some of the abilities, but over a period of time you can work really hard to accomplish it. To make it at the next level, you have to be beyond dedicated.”

Once again, success came quickly. Along the way Allen set 10 school records, and he still holds the program record for runs (258), doubles (67), triples (25), RBI (245), total bases (483), and walks (200). He still holds a single game record for hits (6), and his 200 career walks still stands as the the NCAA Division II record.

Along the way, Allen helped lift his team to three conference titles. He was an all-conference selection in each of his varsity seasons. Allen averaged .348 as a college player and helped lift his team to national title in 1988.

“In the first two games, we pretty much conquered our competition. Before you knew it, we were playing a team from [California Polytechnic State University]. They were a tough team, but we beat them to win the World Series,” he said. “It was a great moment that I’ll never forget. It was probably one of the best sports moments I’ve ever experienced.”

During the off-seasons, Allen continued to hone his craft. In the summers, he played in the prestigious Cape Cod Baseball League. He was a member of the 1987 USA Pan-American Games baseball team and won a silver medal as a member of Team USA at the 1987 International Harbour Tournament in Taiwan.

It was no surprise that he was drafted by the Orioles after his junior year. In fact, he was drafted three times by a Major League Baseball organization. After high school, he was drafted by the Toronto Blue Jays. After college, he was drafted by the California Angels. He signed with the Angels in 1989 before walking away from the game.

“I look back and, boy, when things were going great in my junior and senior years in high school and through college, it was fun,” he said. “I would love to go back and relive those five or six years. It was just a great time with the competitions and friendships. The coaches, the recognition, and everything else were something that I won’t forget.”

With his dominance in high school and college, it was no surprise that Allen was selected to represent the town in the Southington Sports Hall of Fame. On Thursday, Nov. 8, he will be inducted in a ceremony at the Aqua Turf in Plantsville. For tickets, contact Jim Verderame at (860) 628-7335.

To comment on this story or to contact sports writer John Goralski, email him at jgoralski@ southingtonobserver.com.

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