West Central Area Baseball Hall of Fame Class of 2021 Announced

Three to be inducted into the West Central Baseball Hall of Fame.

The Kandiyohi County Historical Society is proud to announce the Class of 2021 inductees into the West Central Minnesota Hall of Fame. This year’s inductees include:


Don Betzen (Granite Falls, MN) Born and raised in Moorhead, Minnesota, Don played both Little League and high school baseball. He was a pitcher for the Moorhead Dragons from 1953-1956. He played baseball with the Williston Oilers, New Prague, the Valentine Hearts in Nebraska. He settled in Granite Falls and was pitcher there for the Kilowatts from 1960-1972. Over his career Don pitched 50 shut-outs and 6 No Hitters. Betzen led Granite Falls to seven state tournaments from 1960-1974.
Allen “Ole” Hovey (1929-2012) Born in Litchfield and grew up in Atwater where he lived the rest of his life. Allen served in the Army from 1951-1953.  He worked at the Atwater Post Office from 1950-1984. Allen graduated from Atwater High School in 1947 where he lettered in football, basketball and baseball and named 1947’s most valuable senior athlete. He played town team ball in Lake Lillian and Atwater from 1947-1960. He coached Atwater Summer recreation boy’s baseball, Atwater Legion baseball and Atwater/Grove City High School.
Earl J. “Smitty” Smith (1917-1996) Earl was born in Kerkhoven and graduated from Morris Ag School. He served in the Navy during World War II.  After returning to Willmar, Smith began his 32-year career of being an umpire. He umpired high school, town team and church league games. He was a member of the Willmar Baseball Boosters and the Southwest Minnesota Umpires Association. Smith give Left Ranweiler credit for his umpiring career as Lefty was the one who encouraged him to start. 


The West Central Minnesota Hall of Fame Class of 2021 induction will be held in sometime in 2021. Watch for more information to come.

For more information, call Jill Wohnoutka at (320) 235-1881 or