“I am very humbled by this award,” high school sports fan Bob Rundquist said after being chosen the West Concord/Triton Athletic Supporter. He is pictured with his great grandson Seth Paulson. Bob was unable to attend the second annual Athletic Hall of Fame banquet which recognized Triton, Claremont, Dodge Center and West Concord athletes on Sept. 28. Photo submitted
By Ruth Hanson
It was a night for celebrating and a time to reminisce.
Sports fans from Claremont, West Concord, Dodge Center and Triton - and all over the state - gathered at Triton High School to eat together and to cheer for the newly chosen members of the Second Annual Athletic Hall of Fame.
Those who were chosen, one and all, thanked the committee for the honor of being chosen and thanked their coaches, families and teammates for how much they had meant to them over the years.
"'Over achievers' is the name that kept coming up for these boys," Coach Lloyd Stauff said, describing the 1973-74 Claremont Boys Basketball Team. "In football they were 2-7, but they played like a true team and I give them credit for the positive things they did."
He said that the memories of a successful team will outlive any individual record. He recalled for them their final game against Southland when, with only three seconds remaining on the clock and the Parrots behind 63-62, Greg Schmoll hauled down a rebound and banked a lay-up with an electrifying finish of 64-63 - and the title for the Centennial Conference.
"We had a lot of great Friday afternoon games and the boys liked getting out of school because our field didn't have lights," Coach Lipelt, coach of the West Concord 1965-66 Football Team, said. "Quite a few of these kids went on to play college ball. They all played consistently well."
This was the first squad from West Concord to ever have members named to the All State Team-honorable mention, which is a great honor especially considering this was in the era of the one class system in football.
Lorry Gunhus, Coach of West Concord/Triton Football and Basketball was inducted into the Hall of Fame, and brought down the house with his funny stories of times past. His football record in West Concord was 108-65 in 19 years.
"We sent many boys on to Division 1 and 2 football," he said. "Those were the days when mouth guards were mandatory. I've always said that you have to find yourself a little humor in coaching."
He added that the real trophies are the ones walking around.
"That's what you should be producing in athletics," he said.
"I am very humbled by this award," Bob Rundquist said after being chosen the West Concord/Triton Athletic Supporter. He always felt that his coaches deserved his respect as a player and has continued showing that respect to coaches, referees ad opponents throughout his lifetime.
"Kids play high school sports because they love it," he said. "Make it count! I'm taking care of myself these days."
Jerry Behne was inducted into the Hall of Fame from the Claremont Class of 1959. He played football, basketball and baseball, lettering in all four for four years and not missing a single game. He holds the single game scoring record for a game when he scored 44 points against Goodhue. He was known for batting left-handed, kicking a ball left-footed, while throwing and shooting with his right hand. He smiled his way through his entire athletic career. He lived in Claremont and attended the games of his children and grandchildren until his death in 2010.
Tracy Petersohn, a 1988 graduate of Claremont High School was all-conference for many years in football and basketball.
But it was in his senior year that a new talent surfaced. While doing two-mile conditioning drills an assistant coach named Dan Porsch noticed his outstanding times. They were competitive with the area's best. That spring Tracy led the first ever Claremont High School track team, with seven other first time participants, training on the gravel roads around Claremont. After ten weeks of training, he won the district and region meets in the 400 and 800 meter runs.
He is the first and only CHS athlete to compete at the state level for any sport. He won first place in the 800 meter run and second place in the 400 meter dash from the 1988 Boys Minnesota State Class A track meet.
Today Tracy continues to run almost daily and has competed in many marathons and half-marathons with a personal best of 2:47 in a full marathon and 1:16 in a half. He lives in Dodge Center with his wife and three children. He is a huge Triton supporter.
"I'm here today because of Dan," he said. "Today I run because of him. I want to thank the coaches."
David Myers graduated in 1953 from Dodge Center High School after earning 15 athletic letters. He was All-State in football in 1952 and played in the North-South game in 1953. He rounded out his high school career by being a top-5 for the Minnesota High School Student Athlete of the Year.
"How did I get here?" he asked the crowd. "My father died when I was three weeks old. I lived across the street from the school. Coaches were good to me because of my dad. I grew up quickly and was tall early. I was introduced to Wally Hitt as a little kid and he became my foster father for the rest of my life. Coaches also had a major impact on me at the University of Minnesota, where I played football."
He taught and coached in a number of schools and later became a school psychologist. He retired after 31 years in the new career, at the age of 70. Greg Head, a 1985 graduate of Dodge Center High School, received 13 varsity letters.
"You remember the losses," he said at the Hall of Fame program.
But one thing he remembers well - seeing his dad's name on a plaque as being named the Outstanding Athlete two years.
"I was determined to do that, too," he said. "And I did."
Then came the big smile as he remembered.
He also received six All /Wasioja Conference awards - two each in football, basketball and baseball and was All-State in baseball. He went on to play baseball at Mankato State where he was a three-year starter and received All-Conference, All-Region and honorable mention All-American honors.
Dick Raddatz, a 1954 graduate of West Concord, was another three-sport athlete, earning the first of his 14 athletic letters as an eighth grader.
He set a scoring record at 36 points in a basketball game with Pine Island as a senior. He was an all-conference back in football on a team that won the conference championship at 7-0 and was unscored upon for the final five games of the season.
He attended the U of M, but due to an injury in his senior year in high school was unable to play football. He was a walk-on in freshman basketball, however, and earned a letter. He transferred to South Dakota State in 1956 and played football for three years, two of them on the varsity team.
He graduated in 1959 and went into active duty in the Army as a training officer. During the 1960-61 season he played basketball for the Army. He was the only officer on the team that was runner-up for the Army basketball championship. As a guard, Dick averaged 17 points and 10 rebounds per game.
He met and married his wife Rita in England.
"I still like sports," he said. "They straightened up my big head - sports and my wife. I'm honored to be chosen, but public speaking is not my forte."
Scott Streiff graduated from West Concord High School in 1985, after a football career that included being named All-Conference as a senior and being named to the WCCO Radio's all-state team. He was a five-year letter winner in track and a three-year letter winner in basketball and all-conference in both.
He received a BS from the University of Minnesota in 1990 and was a member of the football team from 1985 to 1989, earning three varsity "M" letters as an outside linebacker.
"I was a walk-on on the U of M Division 1 football team from the little town of West Concord," he said. "I am truly humbled to be here. I talked to the Cobras team last night and looked into their eyes. How fun for me. I truly enjoyed the game and I am honored to be here."
Jodi Callister was a very dedicated gym rat - first in the gym and last out.
"She made us all better players," her sister said.
"Thanks for the good coaches who were always pushing me to be better," Jodi said. "The highlight of my career was playing in the Mayo Civic Center. And, Mac (her sister) thanks for being my biggest supporter!"
Jodi earned 11 athletic letters, seven all-conference team medals, and was selected to the second all area team her senior year in basketball.
Tim Busch graduated from Triton High School in 1995 - an all-around athlete in high school sports.
"Tim was the heart and soul of any team," Coach Don Henderson said. "It was a great opportunity to be his coach."
"Thanks for this honor - to my coaches and teammates," Tim said.
He was a four year letter winner in football - All-Conference for three years and honorable mention all-state in 1993. As a senior he was named to the first team all-state. He played an important role in that year's football team earning the Class B State Championship. Tim held the Minnesota state receiving record for yards for some time and was also in the national record book for average yards per reception in a season and career.
He enjoyed playing varsity football during his freshman year with his brother Adam, who was a senior. He played baseball with Adam during his freshman year also.
He is currently a journeyman electrician and lives in Kasson.