BARBOURVILLE, Ky. - Union College Director of Athletics Darin S. Wilson announced recently that Matt Mahony has been named of the newly reinstated men's and women's bowling programs.
"We are excited about reviving the bowling program here at Union," said Wilson. "We feel that bowling is an excellent addition to our department and will only enhance our operations.
"I'm pleased to have Matt join our staff," Wilson continued. "I have full confidence in him and believe that he will do an excellent job in recruiting in building the bowling programs."
Mahony is no stranger to Union. A 2007 graduate of the southeastern Kentucky institution, he was a two-year member of the Bulldog baseball team as he helped the squad to the 2006 Appalachian Athletic Conference Tournament championship and the 2007 NAIA Region XII Tournament championship.
Playing in 122 games for the Bulldogs, Mahony posted a career batting average of .346 with 21 doubles, two home runs, 72 RBIs, 132 runs scored and 62 stolen bases. In 2007, he earned a spot on the All-Appalachian Athletic Conference First Team as a third baseman.
"I am very excited for the opportunity as the head bowling coach here at Union College," Mahony said. "I'm looking forward to bringing new student-athletes to campus who will succeed not only in the classroom but on the lanes as well."
In addition to playing baseball at Union, Mahony is also the voice of the Bulldogs on the department's internet broadcasts of athletic events.
"I enjoy broadcasting Union athletics and reaching out to our alumni as well as family and friends of the athletes who can't make it to the games," he said. "We are continuing to make improvements to bring our Bulldog fans the best coverage possible.
"I love being a Bulldog and will continue to help Union improve any way I can."
Union will field a men's team and a women's team and will began competitive play in 2008-09. Bowling puts the number of Union's intercollegiate offerings at 22.
Bowling is the second non-traditional sport to be offered at Union. For the past 10 years, Union has sponsored cycling, which has produced nine All-Americans, five individual national champions and one team national championship.
Nearly 30 years ago, Union offered bowling as an intercollegiate sport. And after an extended hiatus, the sport is making a return.
"Bowling is one of the fastest growing high school sports," Wilson added, "and I think we will be able to recruit not only quality bowlers but quality students as well."
Approximately 50 NCAA schools sponsor bowling, and in 2003-04, the NCAA added women's bowling as a championship sport.
In the NAIA, Union becomes the 14th institution to offer bowling with Lindsey Wilson (Ky.) College and Pikeville (Ky.) College among the others.
Union will compete as part of the United States Bowling Congress (USBC) Intercollegiate Team and Singles Championships. Union's home lanes will be Forest Lanes in Corbin, Ky.
"I would like to thank Darin Wilson for giving me the chance to accomplish something new by starting a new program," Mahony said. "I would also like to thank my parents as well as my sister and family for always supporting me."