Weatherford College softball alumna Bethany Allen was presented with the Ben Hogan Perseverance Award Wednesday in Fort Worth.
The award, sponsored by the Ben Hogan Foundation in partnership with Texas Health Ben Hogan Sports Medicine, includes a $5,000 scholarship for Allen and $5,000 for Weatherford College.
“I nominated Bethany for the award because she is one of the most mentally, physically and spiritually strong athletes I have ever worked with,” said Chris Nelson, WC Head Athletic Trainer. “She is a very hard-nosed type of player who gives 110 percent during every practice, workout and game. To see her continuing to compete after overcoming so much is an inspiration to all.”
Allen, a Mineral Wells High School graduate, was a member of the Coyote softball team from 2014 to 2016, earning All-Conference and All-Region honors. During practice in the spring of 2016, she collided with a teammate and was sent to the hospital where doctors discovered a massive brain tumor.
She underwent brain surgery and a steady diet of radiation treatments. She wasn’t able to get back onto the field for her sophomore season, but she was determined to play again.
After finishing her two years at WC, she transferred to Henderson State University in Arkadelphia, Arkansas, where she remarkably resumed her collegiate softball career. She has started 27 games for Henderson State this season despite sitting out nearly six weeks after another procedure.
"It is an honor to receive the prestigious Ben Hogan Award," Allen said. "I plan to use this scholarship to continue my education and earn my degree. I want to become a college coach and teach those what I have learned through the years and love the sport and have the same passion I have."
The Ben Hogan Award of Perseverance, named after legendary golfer Ben Hogan, recognizes high school and college students who have overcome adversity or injury to return and excel in their respective sport.
Hogan overcame injuries from a horrific auto accident in 1949 that left doctors doubting he would walk again. Not only did he walk, but he returned to golf and 16 months later won the U.S. Open. He retired with 64 tournament victories and nine career professional major championships.