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The 1949-50 Lincoln Northeast basketball team, a veteran team that had won the Class A state championship the previous year, played a good one on their new coach.

In Ed Johnson’s first game, they lost. Scottsbluff beat ‘em. At Northeast, no less.

Apparently, no one pushed the panic button. The team did not lose another game that year. And Ed Johnson hung around and became a legend in Nebraska high school basketball coaching (inducted into this Hall of Fame in 1994).

Scottsbluff figured twice in the 1949-50 school year. It was Northeast’s state tourney finals opponent and the Rockets this time had all the answers, culminating their 19-1season with a 36-31victory.

Northeast averaged 49.6 points per game. Opponents could score only 30.4 per game. Jack Wood and Paul Fredstrom won all-state honors.

Guard Bill Bowmaster notes that 13 of the 14 players on this team, and the 1949 team, also played football at NE. And Northeast finished second in The World-Herald’s final football ratings to Omaha Tech, the football team honored by the Hall of Fame as a Golden Anniversary Team in 1999.

Lincoln Northeast Basketball:

1950 – 19-1
Junior Amend F
Gerald Bingham F
Bill Bowmaster G
Paul Fredstrom C
Jim Gekas F
Ed Glass F
Harvey Groth C
Richard Grell G
Leon Lehr F
Duane Rankin G
LeRoy Seng G
George Stephens F
Jack Wood G
Coach: Ed Johnson
Manager: Jack Childress