Notes from Induction Night
Robert Conway is a graduate of the class of 1945 who earned a total of 9 letters in three sports, football, basketball and baseball. He played with the other stars of the mid-Forties who have previously graced this podium. The football and basketball teams from 1943 to 1945 recorded achievements that St. X had never seen before. Conway was in the middle of all of them.
He was a two-year starting fullback on our first GCL Championship team in 1943 and with Rod Johnson, was the star of the 1944 team. In basketball, as a junior, he was a valuable supporting player on the team that coined the name 'Bombers' and was undefeated until beaten by eventual State Champ Middletown in the regional semi-finals. As one of the stars in 1944-45 he led the Bombers to a 26-5 record, 2nd straight GCL championship and district runner-up in the state tournament. He was the scoring leader during the tournament.
While the baseball Bombers could not match the exploits of the other two teams, Conway was a 3-year starter on that team. After graduation he accepted a football scholarship to Holy Cross, but after one year transferred to Xavier, where he played fullback and punted for Ed Kluska's fine teams. One of his lesser known teammates then was a little-known guard from Pennsylvania - Tom Ballaban.
After finishing his athletic career and education, Conway has been a pillar of this community and contributor to much of what is good about this city. His overall contributions have already been recognized by St. Xavier when he was awarded the Insignis in 1981.
Bob Dalton is a member of the class of 1971 and is the first wrestler to be called to the Hall of Fame. He took up the sport in his junior year only after the veteran football coach failed to recognize his athletic talent and retain him on the team. Joining a program that was just emerging from club status, and under the tutelage of Coach Bill Ohr, he found his calling in wrestling, a calling he answered for the next 17 years.
In his very first year he was the GCL, Sectional and District Champion in the 145 weight class and placed 6th at the State Tournament, becoming the first St. X wrestler to do so. His senior year was even better as he did a repeat performance as GCL, sectional and district champion and again placed 6th in the State Tournament a finish that was not exceeded for at least 10 years by a St. X wrestler. Additionally he was named Cincinnati Wrestler of the Year, an award that only two subsequent Bombers have received.
He attended Miami University where he continued wrestling. At Miami he was team captain and a two-time MVP. He was a three-time Mid-American Conference Champion and NCAA tournament qualifier, the first Miami wrestler and the only St. X wrestler ever to do that.
After graduation he went into teaching and coaching at Lakota High School. From 1975 through 1987 as head coach his teams won 103 dual meets, twenty-two tournament titles, two Cincinnati City Championships, and came the closer to winning the Ohio State Championship than any area school. In his final year, 1987, he was named Ohio Coach of the Year. He is now an administrator with the Reading School District.
William J. Keating, Sr., like Bob Conway, he is a member of the class of 1945, the fourth member of that class to be inducted. Also, like Bob Conway, he has already received (in 1986) the highest honor this school awards, the Insignis. Finally, still again like Bob Conway, he is a widely recognized for his contributions to our community that far outshine his athletic career. Nevertheless, this gentleman had an outstanding athletic career as a swimmer.
He was a four-year member of the St. X varsity who was co-captain his senior year. During that senior year, the team was State runner-up, and he was the 100 yard breast stroke champion and a member of the State Champion Medley relay team. For his efforts he was all-City and all-State. Although he is closely associated with the University of Cincinnati, he actually started his collegiate career at Purdue. At Purdue he was a varsity letterman his freshmen year where he won the Indiana Collegiate 200 yard breast stroke championship. After his freshmen year he transferred to UC where he was a four-time letterman, captain of the 1950 team, and was named All-America. He is a member of the UC Athletic Hall of Fame, a recipient of the NCAA Silver Anniversary Award for outstanding collegiate athletic and career achievement and was, of course, instrumental in the building of our natatorium.
He has been a judge, city councilman, congressman, chairman and publisher of the Enquirer and has continued his involvement in athletics from Knothole baseball to College sports.