Year Inducted: 2007
Nominated By: Dick Vinci
Sports Competed In: Baseball
Athlete, Coach or Contributor: Athlete
Before High School:
Three-year member of the Celtics' YMCA basketball team as a forward (1973-75)... Spent five season (1975-79) at first base in Old Timers League...Spent two years playing first base in Babe Ruth League (1980-81)...Played five seasons (1976-80) as a forward on the Warriors City League basketball team.
Attended Pueblo South, graduating in 1985... Earned four-year letter each on the Colts basketball team as a forward and playing first base(1981-85)...Anchored first base for one season in "B" Legion ball (1982) and three years in "A" Legion (1983-85).
Went to Wichita State University (WSU), graduating in 1989...Played four seasons for the Shockers baseball team in the outfield (1985-89)...Started 54 of 63 games as a true freshman and named to the Missouri Valley Conference (MVC) team with a .356 Batting Average (BA) 68 for 191 at the plate... During his sophomore year, Bonacquista started 74 of 79 games, had a BA .315 (92/292) with 22 doubles, two triples, two HR (including one grand slam) and 20/24 stolen bases...During his junior campaign, Jeff started 63/68 games, tallied a BA. 290 (70/241) with seven doubles, six triples, three HR, and 40 RBI, 18/23 stolen bases as he made the MVC team....WSU finished that year third in Division I National World Series...In his final season, when the Shockers won the Division I World Series National Championship, Bonacquista played in first 45 games and then suffered a broken knee cap in the Illinois State game April 16, 1988. BA .323 54/167, 13 doubles, three triples, one HR, 36 RBI, 12/13 stolen bases.
Played in the outfield for five different teams - Pueblo Collegians (1986), Anchorage Glacier Pilots (1987), Wichita Broncos (1988), Colorado Springs Explorers (1995-97) and Springs Bombers of the MSBL (1998).
Certified Public Accountant.
Resides in Colorado Springs, CO with his wife, Shelese.