1996 – Basketball: Columbus Discovers, 1971-72

Do you know how many teams not from Omaha or Lincoln have won the state’s big school basketball championship in the last 40 high school seasons (written in 1996)?

Three: Fremont in 1961, Columbus in 1972 and Norfolk in 1987. And Silver Anniversary team winner, the ’72 Columbus bunch, won its title at the Nebraska Coliseum with a 71-67 conquest of defending champion Lincoln East.

Coach Jack Johnson’s team, a regular basketball contender in this era, flashed its talent and balance by almost making a rout of the championship game, getting a 20-point lead into the fourth quarter. Then, typical of what happens in the state tournament, they had to dig down and show some grit to survive a rally by East to pluck the championship.

The Discoverers won 19 of 23 games, were Class A’s high scoring team that year and a well deserving state champion.

Roster from the 1972 State Tournament Program:

Frank Brower
Roger Brown
Larry Cattau
Les Cattau
Vernon Davis
Keith Davy
Tom Heiser
Rick Joseph
Dan Lannan
Dan Miller
Paul Potter
Scott Troffiolz
Jon Wagner
Mike Wagner
Coach: Jack Johnson
Assistants: Dennis Van Fossen
Richard Babst

Scorer: Don Holscher
Student Manager: Bruce Friedrichsen
Student Manager: Neil Dankert

1997 – Basketball: Fairbury, 1973


Greg Rosener
Bob Kujath
Mark Hansen
Mark Bangert
Greg Gibson
Dell Schmidt
John Krause
Russ Vanous
Bob Parks
Bob Siegel
Roger Stewart
Kim Kujath

Greg Hansmire, Student Manager
Ken Milius, Student Manager

Charlie Moore, Head Coach
Don Mahlman, Assistant Coach

The team ended the ’73 season with a record of 25-2 and a Class B State Championship. Fairbury’s two losses came at the hands of fellow Central Conference member Crete, 66-76 and 78-88. Fairbury avenged these losses with a 72-60 District win. The Jeffs had state tournament wins over Albion 74-52, Lincoln Pius X 52-47, and Sidney 60-54.

1998 – Football/Track & Field: Lexington High School, 1973-74

The High School Hall of Fame came very close to choosing the entire Lexington High School’s athletic program for 1973-74 as the winner of the Silver Anniversary award, an honor planned for an outstanding team in the school year 25 years ago.

The school had one of the greatest years for any school of its size, winning two state championships and two state runner-up trophies plus having highly competitive teams in practically every sport they tried.

Alas, the Silver Anniversary award eventually focused on the two state champions, football and boys track and field, and the Hall of Fame proudly adds this group to the list of annual winners.

The football team had a 10-0 record in 1973, averaging wins by the score of 40-7, in the days prior to the football playoffs when the football championships were determined by newspaper ratings. The schools had back-to-back unbeaten teams under Coach Noel Martin and the 1973 team pushed its winning streak to 25, which was the best in the state at the time.

Back Ted Harvey won all-state honors and the Southwest Conference rewarded this powerhouse with nine spots on its all-conference team: Harvey, Mark Bappe, Jeff Richardson, Craig Ferguson, Tom Robinson, Mike Adams, Greg Bacon, Fred Knapple and Pat Hodges.

The track team shattered all opposition in its undefeated season, winning its school’s first boys track and field state championship, by doubling the score on the Class B state meet field.

At the 1974 state meet, Lexington won five events, two gold medals and state record performances from Bryan Steadman (6-6) and Pat Hodges (1:55 half-mile). School records also were set by Ted Harvey (100, 220), Hodges (440), Steadman (triple jump, long jump), by Harvey-Hodges-Fred Knapple-Brent Matz in the 440 relay and Steadman-Matz-Harvey-Hodges in the mile relay.

1973-74 Lexington Players:

?Mike Adams 12, tr
?Tim Anthony 11, fb/tr
?Greg Araujo 11, tr
?Greg Bacon 11, fb/tr
?Mark Bappe, 12, fb/tr
?Mike Berke 10, fb
?Scott Bice 12, fb
?Steve Bice 10, fb
?John Boyd 11, fb
?Andy Brown 11, fb
?Jeral Bullins 12, fb
?Tim Cantrell 10, tr
?Matt Dannehl 10, fb
?Larry Davis 11, fb
?Jeff Doerr 12, fb/tr
?Scott Falkinburg 10, fb
?Jeff Fedderson 10, fb/tr
?Bill Fellers 10, fb/tr
?Craig Ferguson 12, fb/tr
?Mitch Folkers 9, tr
?Mike Gerken 10, fb
?Mike Gierhan 11, tr
?Jack Gleason 11, fb/tr
?Steve Hampton 10, fb/tr
?Roger Hanson 12, fb
?Dan Harmon 11, tr
?Ted Harvey 12, fb/tr
?Jim Hawks 11, fb/tr
?Larry Hill 11, fb/tr
?Pat Hodges 12, fb/tr
?Dave Hofferber 11, fb
?Kent Hofferber 10, fb
?Mike Holbrook 10, fb/tr
?Rodney Jacobsen 10, fb
?Dan Jensen 11, tr
?Dale Johnson 11, fb
?Joe Kelly 12, fb
?Mike Kitsmiller 10, fb/tr
?Kim Kitzing 11, tr
?Fred Knapple 12, fb/tr
?Brian Kopf 12, tr
?Brad Lahm 10, tr
?Brian Lahm 11, fb/tr
?Chuck Leininger 10, fb/tr
?Reggie Malcom 10, fb
?Mark Mandelko 11, fb
?Brent Matz 10, fb/tr
?Tim McGuire 11, fb
?Mark McKee 12, fb
?Ray Meyers 12, tr
?Steve Nelson 10, fb
?Mark Newton 11, tr
?Mike Nichelson 10, fb
?Ken Norseen 11, tr
?Mark Olsen 10, fb/tr
?Carl (Paul) Meakins 11, tr
?Keith Pearson 10, fb
?Dan Phillips 10, fb/tr
?Mark Prosser 11, fb/tr
?Jerry Pruitt 12/ tr
?Jeff Richardson 12, fb/tr
?Steve Roberts 11, fb
?Tom Robinson 12, fb/tr
?Elpidio Rodriquez 10, fb
?Mark Rodriquez 12, tr
?Dave Rose 11, fb
?Lonnie Ross 12, fb
?Wayne Shackleton 10, fb
?Doyle Shea 10, fb
?Mike Small 11, fb
?Nick Smets 10, fb/tr
?Bart Smith 10, fb/tr
?Steve Smith 12, fb
?Mark Stamps 11, fb
?Bryan Steadman 12, tr
?C.L. Stevenson 10, fb
?Pat Strohmeyer 11, fb/tr
?Clark Walter 10, fb
?MarkWhite 11, fb

??Head Coaches:
?Noel Martin, football
?Don Bader, track

?Assistant Coaches:
?Russ Eisenhart, fb
?Roger Hanson, fb
?John Higgins, fb/tr
?Dick Hollinger, fb/tr

?Rick Barmore fb, John Boyd tr
?Larry Brittenham fb, Kevin Ingraham fb
?Kevin O’Donnell fb, Steve Tallon fb
?Dennis Wallace fb, Dale Wenberg tr
?Jeff Young fb

??Football Season:

?Game by Game
?Omaha Cathedral 46-7
?Minden 35-14
?Broken Bow 47-0
?Ogallala 35-0
?McCook 35-0
?Gothenburg 41-0
?Kearney 48-6
?Holdrege 34-6
?Ord 48-6
?Cozad 28-14

??Track Wins:

?Meet by Meet
?McCook Relays
?McCook Dual
?Ogallala Invitational
?Ord Invitational
?Central City Invitations
?Dawson County Championships
?Lexington Invitational
?Kearney State Invitational
?Southwest Conference
?District Meet
?State Meet

1999 – Basketball: Omaha Central, 1974 and 1975

Omaha Central, one of the state’s first high schools and a grand institution all these years, won its first basketball state championship in 1912, the second year of the state tournament.

The Eagles, who’ve played good basketball year in and year out, qualified for state a lot. But 62 years went past before another state title trophy found its way to Central’s hallways.

Credit in this Silver Anniversary award goes to a determined group of athletes, several of whom played in grade school and junior high together and stayed together in high school.

The 1974 team ended the title drought, finishing a 22-3 year by defeating Lincoln East in the Class A championship game, 57-49. Before anyone hardly had time to figure 62 years down the road to see when Central might win again, the 1975 team posted a 24-1 record and made it two in a row with a state title win over Omaha Creighton Prep, the only team to beat the Eagles that year.

Consecutive state championships….. 66 wins and just four losses in two seasons….The widest margin of victory in the Metro Conference (20.6, 1974-75), a record which still stands…..All-state honors for John C. Johnson and Clayton Bullard, coach of the year honors for Coach Jim Martin.

Johnson was a high scorer both years. Sylvester Pierce averaged in double figures both years. Bullard’s game advanced in his senior year to the point where he was ready for a career at Colorado in college. Michael Ashford was the 1974 scoring leader. Charles Lewis also was a double figure scorer in 1974. Many of the players on the two teams saw action most every game.

One additional spot where they “own” a piece of high school history: Their 1975 championship game was the last game played in the Nebraska Coliseum. The Devaney Center opened for the 1976 tournament.

Omaha Central Basketball:
1974 – 22-3
1975 – 24-1

Michael Ashford, 1974
Thommie Allen 1974
Albert Briggs 1975
Kevin Buckner 1974
Clayton Bullard 1974-1975
Greg Bullard 1974
James Dorsey 1974
John C. Johnson 1974-1975
Phil Jefferson 1975
James M. Kriss 1974
Charles Lewis 1974
Henry A. Moore 1975
Rodney Oliver 1975
Sylvester Pierce-Tally 1974-1975
Mitchell Pinkard 1975
Raymond Williams 1974-1975
Lawrence V. Wilson 1975
Steve Watson 1975

Head Coach

James Martin

Assistant Coaches

Paul Pennington
Stan Standifer

Athletic Director

Don Benning

1999 – Football: Scribner, 1974

What was it that was to be liked about the 1974 Scribner High School football team?

Was it the record, 10 wins and no losses? Was it the defense; five shutouts to open the season? Was it how easy they won; about a 30-margin or more in all but one game?

Might it have been the way this Class C team took on unbeaten Class B Wayne in the season finale (Husker Conference playoff game) and, although challenged, stepped through a 13-6 victory?

Historian Jerry Mathers, in his 1978 high school sports book, looked upon this bunch, coached by Dick Tingelhoff, as one of Class C’s best football teams…. ever.

They were big enough and bad enough, with all-state tackle John Havekost and linebacker Tim Dahl the leaders of an aggressive defense that permitted just four touchdowns all season long and that includes when the reserves were having their go.

Points scored: 391. Points allowed: 25. Shutouts: 7. All the while playing a strong schedule. ‘Nuff said. Great team. They had a great time.

Scribner Football

Elmer Armstrong G
Ron Baumert C
Glenn Baumert G-E
Clark Benne HB-QB
Randy Bremmer E
James Dahl HB
Scott Dahl DE
Tim Dahl FB
Tony Daugherty HB
Mike Daugherty G
Lanny Gebers G
Pat Grosserode G
Don Hagedorn HB
John Havekost T
Jeff Helgenberger HB
Greg Hoge C
Mike Kelly T
Kim Killingsworth
Mark Langemeier G
Stan Lutes T
Dave McHenry
Ron Meyer QB
Jay Muller E
Steve Peters E
Stan Pfeiffer T
Russell Poppe QB
Dan Poppe HB-E
Tom PorterG
Jeff Pribnow HB
Larry Ristau FB
Warren Schlecht HB
Kevin Schulenberg E
Dan Schultz HB
Paul Steil FB
Eric Stockamp
Mark Svec G
Ken Thomas LB-HB
Gary Tienken G-C
Don Tonjes T
Don Von Seggern G
Glenn Von Seggern HB
Terry Von Seggern C
Glenn Wapelhorst T
Kevin Wapelhorst HB
Lyle Westphalen G
Jon Wiese E

Kevin Rosenkotter, manager
Gordon Vavricek, statistician

Head Coach:
Dick Tingelhoff

Assistant Coaches:

Allen Rubesh
Curtis Helgenberger
Paul Eddie

Principal: Harry Swanda

Game By Game
With the Trojans:

Dodge, 42-0
North Bend, 29-0
Lyons, 62-0
West Point, 38-0
Pender, 35-0
Wisner-Pilger, 38-7
Logan View, 41-6
Tekamah-Herman, 32-0
Omaha Holy Name 29-0
Oakland-Craig, 32-6
Wayne, 13-6

2001 – Basketball: First State Champs in Modern Era of the Sport

Lincoln East Spartans, 1977 Class A Girls Basketball State Championship Team:

York, 1976-77 Class B Girls Basketball State Championship Team:

Hastings St. Cecilia, 1976-77 Class C Girls Basketball State Championship Team:

Hastings Tribune, Oct/2001

By Chris Cottam

Twenty-five years ago this year, a group of girls from St. Cecilia made history.

They were the school’s first girls basketball team, they played in the first state tournament that same year and won the coveted title of state Class C champs. Their remarkable performance in the infancy of the girls basketball program made them celebrities of sorts. Recently, the team was inducted into the Nebraska High School Sports Hall of Fame. Many of the team members attended the banquet.

The Nebraska High School Sports Hall of Fame in Lincoln gives recognition to athletes, coaches and teams for outstanding achievements through the years.

Among those who attended were Bonnie (Pohlmeier) Englehardt of Kenesaw and Nancy (Kindig) Malone of Geneva. Englehardt said she was honored to be counted among an elite group of athletes. “What an honor to be a member with everyone else who were legends of their own time,” she said.

Malone is excited that she was part of the ground floor of girls basketball. “We’re now the people our daughters can look at and be proud of for paving the way for them,” Malone said. “That was our part in history.”

Englehardt recalled how the team was known for its coach, Jim Nemetz, the current STC athletic director. “He always had a Lifesaver lollipop stick in his mouth. I think it ‘saved’ him his sanity his first year of coaching girls,” she said jokingly.

Maybe it wasn’t that bad. “They played like boys,” Nemetz said. “Most of the girls played with their brothers in the garage. It made them better athletes. We had a lot of talent. We did a lot of running and could be physical.

Malone remembers Nemetz telling them in 1976, “You will win the state championship.” “From the beginning, we knew we would win,” Malone said. And win they did. The team went on a streak, going 66-0 the first three years. They dominated most games.

“We didn’t score under 60 points a game,” Malone said. Malone attributes the team’s winning streak to great coaching and great parents. “We couldn’t have done it without parental support. We’re really grateful for that,” Malone said.

Members of the team included: Diane Gleason, Robin Bourg, Carla Schutte, Anne Beiriger, Patty Cronstrom, Linda Mertens, Linda DeLaet, Nancy Kindig, Patty Gleason, Bonnie Pohlmier, Monica Sherman, Patty DeLaet, Marcia Schutte, Michelle Oldham, Sandi Beyke, Caroline Theis, Julie Parr, Carol Quinn, Monique Stout, Leanne Juranek, Diane Jarzynka, Michelle Klein and Julie Farmer. Dee Consbruck was the student manager.

Shickley, 1976-77 Class D Girls Basketball State Championship Team:

2002 – Basketball: Howells, 1973-74-77-78

Howells incredible run in Class C basketball, 1973-74-77-78.

Howells Basketball Team Members:
Brian Baumert
Steve Baumert
Terry Baumert
Paul Belina
Rich Belina
Paul Bienhnoff, Coach
Al Blum
Dale Blum
Dave Blum
Don Blum
Randy Cech
Rick Cech
Chris Clausen
Cary Jakubowski
Dick Jakubowski
Larry Jakubowski
Kevin Janata
Rod Kalisek
Jeff Kersten
Mark Kersten
Dan Koliha, Student Manager
Bill Kousel
Lavern Lodl
Jim Morrison, Coach
Dave Prusa
Jim Prusa
Phil Prusa
Bob Ritzdorf
Ken Ritzdorf
Tom Ritzdorf
Neil Schlautman
Steve Schlautman
Russ Schwartz
Dale Steffel
Marty Telecky
Darryl Timm, Coach

1973 Team:

1974 Team:

1977 Team:

1978 Team: