Southeastern Minnesotans on the MSHSL lists
The Minnesota State High School League is observing its 100th year of state high school basketball tournament play. The MSHSL Web site has been posting "best of" lists for several weeks. Here are southeastern Minnesota teams, players, coaches and moments that made it:
Top five boys players:
Randy Breuer – Lake City
State appearances: 1978, 1979
State championships: 1978, 1979
Breuer, a 7-footer in high school, scored 68 points as a junior in leading Lake City to the 1978 state title, including 36 in a semifinal victory over Butterfield-Odin. In 1979 he scored 42, 30 and 41 points in three games at state as the Lakers repeated as champs. Breuer was named the Minnesota Mr. Basketball award winner in 1979. Breuer went on to play for the Minnesota Gophers for four years. After his collegiate career, Breuer entered the 1983 NBA draft and was selected in the first round, 18th overall by the Milwaukee Bucks. Breuer played 11 seasons in the NBA
Top five girls games:
Osseo 66, Rochester Mayo 58 -- 1996 Class AA Semifinal
Osseo led 11-0, but Rochester Mayo battled back to lead 48-43 in the third quarter. Osseo had been held scoreless for six minutes, but Erin Skelly scored the first five points of the fourth quarter to put Osseo back on top 54-48. A three by Kelly Miller got the Spartans within three at 58-55, but the Orioles then scored the next five points to ice it. An Osseo zone defense "slowed down the Millers." Meanwhile, "Osseo likes to push the ball," said coach Dave Thorpe. "We didn't want to get into a slow down game with them." Skelly scored 20 points, while Erica Haugen added 14 with three assists, two steals and just three turnovers against "constant defensive pressure."
Rochester Mayo 78, Bloomington Jefferson 70 -- 1997 Class AAAA Semifinal
Bloomington Jefferson led Rochester Mayo 67-58 with 4:31 remaining. Extra challenges surfaced for the Jefferson Jaguars when freshman Megan Kane fouled out. She had guarded one or the other of the Miller twins, Coco and Kelly, all game long. "Take out a six-foot person with long arms (and) put in someone who is 5-6. There's a big difference," said Jefferson coach Terry Hunst. Meanwhile, the Millers "created havoc" for Jefferson ball handlers. Mayo outscored Jefferson 27-12 in the fourth quarter, including a 20-3 run over the final three-and-a-half minutes. The Millers scored the final 18 Mayo points, including 10 free throws, to finish with 50 points between them.
Top five girls coach:
Myron Glass – Rochester Lourdes
State appearances: 1986, 1987, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2010
State championships: 1987, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1995, 2000, 2003, 2005
Glass, the girls' basketball coach at Rochester Lourdes since 1983, ranks second in career victories in Minnesota, entering the 2011-12 season with a mark of 687-97. Glass has led the Eagles to seven state championship games and they have won them all. His coaching success did not come after a playing career because Glass did not play basketball in high school or college. He was cut from the basketball team at Minneapolis South High School and worked his way through St. Cloud State University as a non-athlete who worked at a gas station on weekends. He is known as a coach who keys on preparation, with extensive scouting reports on every opposing team, coach and player.
Top five girls players:
Kelly and Coco Miller – Rochester Mayo
State appearances: 1995, 1996, 1997
State championships: 1995 (AA), 1997(AAAA)
The Miller twins led Rochester Mayo High School to three consecutive state tournament appearances and won the tournament in 1995 (27-1) and again in 1997 with a perfect 27-0 record. The sisters were both named Minnesota Miss Basketball, an award which had never before been shared by two players in the same year. Both of the Miller sisters were heavily recruited by colleges throughout the country and they ultimately ended up at the University of Georgia, where they helped lead the Bulldogs to the NCAA Final Four in 1999. At the end of their collegiate careers in 2001, the Miller sisters entered the WNBA draft. Currently, Coco plays for the Atlanta Dream and Kelly plays for the Washington Mystics.
Other notable player:
Katie Ohm – Elgin-Millville
State appearances: 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005
State championships: 2005
2005 Minnesota Miss Basketball Winner. Minnesota's all-time leader in free throws made (664) and attempted (939) at that time, but now surpassed. She also held the career scoring record with 3,694 points when she graduated. Went on to play for the University of Minnesota.
Top five girls teams:
Rochester Mayo (27-0), 1997
By 1997, Coco and Kelly Miller had already played in three state tournaments, taking fourth place as eighth-graders in 1993, winning a Class AA title in 1995, and finishing third in 1996. Their 73-67 loss to Bloomington Jefferson in the 1993 semifinals, and their 66-58 loss to Osseo in the 1996 semifinals have been heralded as two of the greatest games in girls' tournament history. The twins were already among the most famous and most heavily recruited Minnesota girls ever.
There would be no more losses in 1997, but there was another classic game — a 78-70 semifinal win over Jefferson in the highest scoring game in tournament history at that time. Robbinsdale Armstrong and Woodbury were defeated by an average of 23 points. Coco and Kelly led all tournament scorers with 72 and 71 points, respectively. They shared the Ms. Basketball award that year.
Rochester Lourdes (30-0), 1991
The Lourdes Eagles won their second straight state title, and third of (now) eight Class AA championships under coach Myron Glass in 1991. This is the only one of Lourdes' eight championship teams to finish undefeated, and on that basis rates as the Eagles' best team.
It didn't hurt that this Lourdes team had two stars in Lori Lawler and Stacy Sievers. Sievers scored 24 points in a 52-31 quarterfinal win over MACCRAY. Lawler scored 22 in a 58-44 semifinal win over St. Peter. And both scored 17 points each in a 53-28 rout of New London-Spicer in the final. Lourdes was the third girls' team to repeat after New York Mills and Little Falls.
Top five girls shots:
Martha Macken, Rochester Lourdes 1987
The first of Lourdes' eight state championships almost didn't happen. With two of its starting five out of action with leg injuries sustained in the tournament itself, Wheaton was tied with the Eagles at 31-31 with time running out. A shot by Lourdes' center Kim Rowenkamp with five seconds left bounced off to the left. The ball skittered through Catherine Restovich's hands. "I just grabbed it and shot," Martha Macken said later. "It kind of went around. I mean, it didn't swish or anything." But it went through as time expired, giving the Eagles a 33-31 win and their first title.
Top five boys shots:
Bird Island-Lake Lillian, 49 Winona Cotter 47 (2OT) -- 1981 Class A Final
Bird Island-Lake Lillian and Winona Cotter battled back and forth into a second overtime. With the score tied at 47-all and just five seconds remaining, Barry Wohler hit a 23-footer to win a second straight title for Bird Island-Lake Lillian. He finished the game with 28 points.
"Other notable" boys coaches:
Ove Berven, Austin, 1941-63
14 state appearances, two championships
Tom Vix, Rushford-Peterson, 1989-2010
11 state appearances, two championships
"Other notable" boys team:
Red Wing (19-0), 1922
The Wingers won the 1920 state title. In 1921, two starters were left home with the flu. Guard Butsie Maetzold, later coach of two Hopkins state champions, always claimed that Red Wing would otherwise have won three straight state titles. In any event, they repeated in 1922 as only the second unbeaten champion to that time. (Maetzold was one of top five coaches).