DeLayne Johnston-Robbins was born in Sidney, Montana, and played high school basketball in Richey, Montana. DeLayne came to Northern as a transfer from the University of Montana in 2004. She was a starter on the Skylights basketball team for two and a half seasons, accumulating 1,153 points and 728 rebounds over her career. During her junior season, the Skylights made their first national tournament appearance in five years, and finished in the round of 16. In two national tournament games that year, DeLayne notched two double-double performances. During that season the Skylights set four team records: free throw attempts (49), free throws made (36), overall free throw percentage (78.3%), and most assists (40). DeLayne was named four-time Academic All-Conference, twice named Frontier Conference First Team All-Conference, and in 2007 was named NAIA Third Team All-American. She graduated from Northern in 2007 with a bachelor’s degree in Biology.
DeLayne lives in Baker, Montana, with her husband, Liam Robbins, and their twin sons, Declan and Reade. Although she has taken some time away from work to be with her sons, she is involved in city league sports and other community activities in Baker.
Tyson Thivierge came to Northern in 1998 after a successful prep career wrestling at Clarkston High School in Clarkston, Washington. He wrestled as a true freshman and that year placed second at the regional qualifier and finished third at the NAIA National Championships. His sophomore year he again placed second at the regional qualifier and placed second at the National Championship, losing 6-7 in an exciting final match. In Thivierge’s junior year he placed third at the National Championship, with a season record of 36 wins and 7 losses. In his senior year Thivierge won the regional qualifier, won the NAIA National Championship, and was named NAIA Wrestler of the Year. He placed fourth at the Las Vegas Cliff Keen Invitational tournament and finished second at the Midlands Championship Tournament, considered by many to be the toughest collegiate wrestling tournament in the country. Thivierge defeated NCAA Division I national champion as well as the third, fourth, and fifth place finishers from the NCAA Division I National tournament. He also defeated multiple D-II and D-III All-Americans, including the National Champions from those divisions. His final record his senior year was 46-3 with 25 pins. He was only the second wrestler in Northern’s history to be named a four-time All-American, and at the conclusion of his senior season he held Northern’s record for most career wins at 136 and tied the record for career pins at 53.
Before coming back to MSU-Northern in 2008, Thivierge spent some years moving around the country to Tennessee, Washington, and Nevada. In Tennessee, Thivierge served as an assistant coach at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga before moving to Clarkston, Washington, where he assisted his high school coach for two seasons. In 2006 Thivierge was hired for his first head coaching position at Carson High School in Carson City, Nevada. Thivierge served as Head Coach for two seasons before he was hired at his alma mater, MSU-Northern. He currently lives in Havre with his wife, Stephanie Thivierge (’03) and their two children, Orion and Marlee.
Steve Helm was born in Chicago, Illinois and grew up in Indianapolis, Indiana. He came to Northern by way of North Idaho College where he received an Associate’s Degree and played basketball. While at Northern Helm was a standout competitor, leading the Lights Basketball team to the Frontier Conference championship game both in 1997 and 1998. During the 1998 season, Helm was voted First Team All-Conference, was selected as the Frontier Conference MVP, and was selected as an NAIA All-American. Helm and the Lights won the Frontier Conference Championship and competed at the national tournament in 1998. During that year Helm set a new single-season record for free throws attempted, breaking Deon Jones’ record.
After graduation, Helm served as a volunteer assistant for the Tennessee Wesleyan men’s basketball team. He then went on to coach at Ancilla College for six years, the last five as the school’s head men’s basketball coach. During his tenure at Ancilla, Helm oversaw a national Coca-Cola All-American, three distinguished All-Americans, as well as five Academic All-Americans. Helm then went on to serve as the assistant women’s basketball coach at Valparaiso University for the next four years. In 2015 he was hired as the head women’s basketball coach at Calument College of St. Joseph. Helm lives in Indiana with his wife, Kelly Helm. He has three children, Shandi Kano, Koby Kano and Steve Helm III, who plays basketball at Carroll College in Helena.
Doug Kallenberger came to MSU-Northern’s Rodeo team after a successful high school rodeo career. Kallenberger, a Havre native, was a two-time Montana High School Rodeo Association Champion Saddle Bronc Rider and qualified for the National High School Rodeo Finals twice in Saddle Bronc Riding. While competing for Northern’s rodeo team, Kallenberger qualified for the College National Finals Rodeo in 2001 and 2003 in Saddle Bronc Riding. In 2001 he was named Northern Rodeo Association Rookie of the Year in Saddle Bronc Riding and was the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association Big Sky Region Saddle Bronc Champion. He was a two-time Montana Pro Rodeo Circuit Finals Qualifier and four-time Northern Rodeo Association Finals Qualifier. In 2013 Kallenberger won the Wrangler Team Roping National Championship.
Kallenberger lives in Havre and works as an Agricultural Loan Officer at Stockman Bank and is the MSU-Northern Rodeo Team Head Coach. He and his wife Emily (who met while they were competing for Northern’s Rodeo team) have two children, Kenzie and Rome.
Mike Leinwand wrestled his high school years in Forsyth, MT where he was a 3-time state champion. In 1992 his high school team won the state championship, and in 1993 he went undefeated and was named as an honorable mention Asics High School All-American. He wrestled two years at North Dakota State University before transferring to MSU-Northern. While at Northern Leinwand was a two-time NAIA All-American, won the 1998 Heavyweight title and was a part of Northern’s 1998 National Championship team.
Leinwand stayed in Havre after graduation and has been very active in Havre Public Schools and as a member of the Montana Officials Association. In his 17 years at HPS, Leinwand has served as a Science Teacher, Assistant Football Coach, Assistant Wrestling Coach, Assistant Track Coach, At-Risk Student Committee Member, Traffic Education Coordinator and Teacher, and he received MSU-Northern’s Traffic Education Service Award. Leinwand has been a member of the Montana Officials Association for 18 years, officiating Montana State Wrestling Championships for the last 8 years. He also was co-developer of the Montana Middle School State Wrestling Championships.
Chad Edgar grew up in Billings, MT and in his senior year at Billings Skyview High School was an individual state champion as well as captain of Skyview’s first-ever Class AA team championship. He attended North Idaho Junior College for two years before transferring to MSU-Northern in 1996. While at Northern Edgar was a standout competitor. During the 1996-97 season, he compiled a 38-6 record, placed 1st at the Northern Regional tournament, and placed 3rd at the National tournament. In the 1997-98 season Edgar’s record was 22-5, and he placed 3rd at the Northern Regional tournament. Edgar was crowned NAIA 1998 National Champion in the 141 pound weight class. That year, with Edgar as the team captain, the Lights Wrestling Team won the NAIA National Championship.
After graduating from Northern in 1998 with a degree in Biology, Edgar returned to Billings where he served as assistant wrestling coach at Billings Skyview, helping the Falcons win two Class AA Championships. Edgar then moved back to Havre, where he has served as Havre High School’s assistant wrestling coach for more than a decade, helping the Blue Ponies win eight Class A State Wrestling titles. In 2004 he was hired as Superintendent of Beaver Creek Park – the largest county park in the United States.
In addition to his work with Havre High School, Edgar has spent many years running Havre Middle School’s wrestling program, organizing and hosting summer wrestling camps in Havre, and supporting Northern’s wrestling program. He has been vital in helping Northern recruit Havre High wrestlers. Edgar and his wife Sara work and live in Beaver Creek Park with her daughter Keylee.
Jaci Heny started her career at Powell High School in Powell, WY under the tutelage of coach Dale Anne Meeker. She played on the varsity team for four years and was selected to both the All-Conference and All-State teams in 2001 and 2002. Heny attended Sheridan Junior College and played two years under coach Frank McCarthy. She was named to the Region IX All-Conference team and All-Tournament team in 2004.
After receiving an Associate of Science degree from Sheridan, Heny came to MSU-Northern to play for Mike Erickson. As a Skylight, Heny was selected to the All-Conference team in 2005 and 2006 and was selected to the 2nd team All-American in 2006. Heny currently holds five scoring records at Northern including: points in a single game (40), points in a season (616), highest season scoring average (20.5), and most free throws made and free throws attempted in a season (229/268). Heny is 9th on the list of Skylight all-time leading scorers with 1,045 points. After her final year of playing, Heny helped coach the Skylights in 2007 and earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Health and Physical Education with a Minor in Coaching.
Heny accepted a teaching position in Douglas, WY and was named the head girls basketball coach. In her six years there, her teams amassed a record of 126 wins and 44 losses, won two regional championships, and were state runners-up once. Heny was named Conference Coach of the Year three times. She was instrumental in helping recruit Douglas High School grad and current Skylights point guard Molly Kreycik. During that time Heny also received a Master’s in Coaching and Athletic Administration from the University of Concordia. In 2013, she was hired as the assistant coach at the University of Great Falls and in the 2014-15 season she helped lead the Argos to their first national tournament appearance and an elite eight finish. In 2015, Heny decided it was time to move home to Wyoming and accepted a position as Recreation Supervisor in Powell, WY, where she currently resides.
After starting her coaching career with two seasons at the University of Minnesota-Morris, Sherry Winn coached the Skylights Basketball team for five seasons for a record of 137 wins and 19 losses, as well as five Frontier Conference titles and the 1993 NAIA DII national championship. She was also named NAIA DII Coach of the Year in 1993. Following her time at Northern, she coached five seasons at Colorado State-Pueblo and then spent 11 seasons coaching at NCAA Division II University of Charleston in Charleston, West Virginia. Over her 23 year coaching career she compiled a record of 442 wins to 234 losses.
Winn was also a player at Charleston and holds the record for most points in a season (682), career point per game average (21.5), and graduated valedictorian of her class. She was a two-time Olympian who represented the US in team handball during the 1984 and 1988 Olympic games.
Winn moved from coaching to pursue her passion for writing, consulting, coaching, and public speaking. Winn has written four books on maximizing success. She currently lives in Billings and travels the country as a speaker and coach.
The number 22 has been a favorite of Charna Ophus-Seibert since her sophomore year in high school. It was her uniform number as the starting point guard for the Big Sandy Pioneers undefeated (27-0) girls basketball state championship team. Ophus-Seibert also wore 22 throughout her career at Northern as she led the Skylights as point guard to their first, and thus far, their only national women’s basketball championship in 1993. Ophus-Seibert got married on the 22nd of April 2012 to Jordan Seibert, a US Air Force captain based at Malmstrom Air Force Base. Now, 22 years after the Skylights won the 1993 national women’s basketball championship, Ophus-Seibert is being inducted in to the MSU-Northern Hall of Fame.
Ophus-Seibert’s time at MSU-Northern included 4 seasons on the basketball team while getting her Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications, plus one season on the volleyball team while getting her Master’s of Education in Guidance and Counseling. In that time the Skylight basketball team won four conference championships, four district championships and earned four trips to the national tournament including winning the 1993 national championship while setting the school record for a 35 game winning season. She was named MVP of the Northern Invitational tournament, was a four-time Academic All-Conference basketball player, was an Academic All-American selection for both basketball and volleyball, and a Student Excellence Award winner. She holds the career record at MSU-Northern for most assists (641), the season record for most steals (99), and recorded MSU-Northern’s first women’s basketball triple-double.
Since graduating from MSU-Northern, Ophus-Seibert has lived in Arizona, Washington and Oregon and enjoyed a variety of career fields from health club management to school counseling to various sales and marketing positions. Ophus-Seibert moved back to Montana in 2007 and resides in Great Falls where she has worked as a banker for Wells Fargo. Currently, Ophus-Seibert is on a personal leave of absence to be home with her baby boy, 6-month-old Marcellus. Ophus-Seibert enjoys outdoor activities to stay fit including running, biking, hiking, snowshoeing and competing in sprint-triathlons and 5k runs.
Kyle Fisher, a four-time all American wrestler under the coaching of David Ray, graduated from Northern with a Bachelor's Degree in Education in 2004 and received a Master's Degree in 2010. He currently is an administrator at Alberton School District and lives with his wife Lexy and daughter Zoey in Missoula. Kyle was a two-time state champion, he compiled a record of 127-37. He is tied for 6th all-time at Northern for wins with 48 career pins and a 38-4 record in his senior year.
Andy Smith was three time 1st team all-conference wide-receiver in 1999, 2000, and 2001. He also received honorable mention All American for wide-receiver in 2001. He holds current records at Northern - 13 receptions in a game, 3 touchdowns in a game, 67 receptions in a season, 1087 yards in a season and 2641 yards total. Andy was coached by Walt Currie. Andy currently lives in Havre with his wife Barbara and children Brian and Brandon. He teaches and coaches at Havre Public Schools.
Emmett Willson, a Lights Wrestler from 2001-2004, is one of the most accomplished athletes to ever compete at Northern. He is a three time National Champion, four time All-American, and the 2003-2004 outstanding wrestler of the National tournament. In 2004, Willson was also the Las Vegas Invitational Champion and the Midlands Champion. His career record is 163 wins and only 16 losses.
In 2004, Emmett Willson became the Dan Hodge Award Winner; the Heisman Trophy of Wrestling. He received the award his senior year when he went 50-0. The award is usually given to a NCAA Division I Wrestler, so for a NAIA wrestler to win this award is a great accomplishment.
While at Northern, he received his degree in secondary education with a social science broad field minor. He also received the Northern Student Excellence Award in 2004. The Student Excellence award is the highest honor a student can receive. Willson also worked for Korb Construction while he lived in Havre, and now is a construction foreman in Miles City.
Emmett and his partner Jill Diedrich have two children Rafe (2) and Lane who will be one on May 24th. Emmett and Jill are also pleased to be welcoming a new member of the family this fall.
Larry Sapp, a Lights basketball player from 1950 to 1952, was one of the top athletes in Montana during those two years. He came to Northern in 1950 as a freshman with no scholarship. The year before Sapp joined the team the Lights only won 1 game. After he joined the team they enjoyed a season with 21 wins. Sapp's ball handling skills and team leadership brought Northern basketball to great success including runner up at the prestigious Western Montana Christmas Tournament (1950-51). He was the lead scorer for the Lights for the two years he played, scoring 408 points in 25 games his sophomore year.
During Sapp's time at Northern he was: Mr. Basketball (1950-51), Most Valuable Team Player (1951-25) by the Athletic Committee, Second Team Conference All Star Team (1951-52), and Captain of the team (1951-52). Sapp was elected vice president of his class at Northern. Larry's major was Business Administration.
In his junior year, Sapp transferred to Gonzaga University. Unfortunately, before he could play for the Zags, Sapp's basketball career was ended by a serious injury from a car wreck.
Larry Sapp became a businessperson in Havre and was part of many organizations. He gave much of his time to the Elks and Eagles, Big Sky Girl Scout Council, Red Cross, Optimist Club, Toast Master Club, Chamber of Commerce, Blue Pony Booster Club, MSU-Northern Alumni and Booster Club. He and his wife Marge have three children, nine grandchildren and twelve great grandchildren.
Loren Baker, the Skylights basketball coach from 1981 to 1990, which to this date are the most successful years in the Skylights history. Baker earned 12 Conference and 4 District Coach of the year awards. The Skylights were ranked as high as number one in the nation. This ranking was well deserved because the Skylights averaged 24 wins a season for 10 years, which made Baker the 4th Winningest Coach in the NAIA History. During Baker's career as head women's coach, he and the Skylights had 244 wins - 70 losses: winning percentage of 78%. They had seven conference and 4 district championships, along with 4 National Tournament appearances placing in the top 16 two of the four years. Besides all of the success on the court, Baker graduated all players in his 10 year period, and Northern was #1 in the Country for NAIA attendance for home games. In 1991 Baker took over as head coach of the Lights Basketball team. Baker once again brought the Lights to the forefront of the Frontier conference. The Lights were ranked as high as 10th in the nation, which was the first time in school's history. The Lights averaged 22 wins per season. The lights ended with 132 wins and 47 losses with a winning percentage of 74%. The Lights had 3 conference championship and 2 national tournament appearances, which in 1995 they defeated the #2 team and ended the tournament #8. During this time, the Lights broke 45 team records, had a team GPA of 3.1 and continued the success of being the #1 in conference attendance.
David Ray, the Lights Wrestling coach from 1993 to 2005, brought the Lights Wrestling to the top of the Frontier conference and the nation. Ray was named Coach of the Year 10 times during his 12 years at Northern. Ray also was National Coach of the year 4 times as he led his team to 4 NAIA National Championships. Ray's time coaching the Lights Wrestling ended with a dual coaching record of 135-30-4. Besides leading his team to 4 national titles, Ray coached 6 individuals who received the Outstanding Wrestler of the National Tournament Award. Ray produced 85 All-Americans, 21 national champions, and finished in the top 3 at the NAIA national tournament 7 times in 12 seasons. David also coached Emmett Willson who won three 197 lb. national championships and in 2003 was named the Hodge Trophy winner. The Hodge Trophy is the Heisman Trophy of wrestling. This means that Emmett was voted the top wrestler in the nation among all divisions, NCAA division 1, NCAA II, NCAA III, and NAIA. Ray also gets to share this night with one of his former wrestlers Turk Lords who won 4 national titles.
Turk Lords is one of the most accomplished athletes ever to compete at Northern. Lords attended Northern from 1998 to 2001. He is the only Northern Wrestler to ever win four national championships. Lords also is a 4-time regional champion, 4-time All-American, and the 2001 Outstanding Wrestler of the National tournament. Lords' career records are 126 wins and only 10 losses, 7th with all-time wins, 5th with 50 pins on all time falls. In 2000 Lords was the Little Sullivan Award recipient, and placed two times at the prestigious Midlands Championships. During the start of Lords' second season with the Lights he was ranked #1 of all divisions (NAIA, NCAA Div. 1, 2, & 3) by Amateur Wrestling News and Wrestling USA Magazine. To top off Lords' amazing career at Northern, he was also inducted to the National Wrestling Hall of Fame.
Lori M. Hagen
All-American, Lori M. Hagen, of Great Falls, Montana, competed for the Skylight’s volleyball team from 1988-1991 earning all-district first team selections, co-MVP and academic all-conference honors and was selected to on the Northwestern Regional Team during her career at MSU-Northern. She was voted the teams Most Inspirational Player coming back from a back injury and was a leader on the 1991 Skylights team that participated in the national tournament placing 5th. Hagen was an Academic All-Conference player and was awarded a Student Excellence Award at MSU-Northern in 1991. She is currently a nationally rated, Frontier Conference and MOA volleyball official. Hagen is an accountant for Easter Seals in Great Falls, Montana.
Dani Davison-Holgate of Belgrade, Montana was one of Montana’s top high school players and played for two years as a MSU-Northern Skylight earning Montana’s top athlete award, the 1999 Little Sullivan Award for her performance. As a co-captain and co-MVP, she set four new school records, led the team to two conference championships and two national tournament appearances with an 8th place finish in 1999. She led the nation and the Frontier Conference in 1997-98 in 3 point percentage in 1998-99 with 52% and wad 3rd in the nation if free throws with 88.6%. Davison-Holgate earned NAIA Division I All-American Honorable Mention and Second Team honors. She still is in the top ten all-time school records for career points, career scoring average, single season average, most free throws attempted and most free throws made. Davison-Holgate is currently coaching junior varsity girl’s basketball in Belgrade, Montana where she lives with her husband, Eddy and their three children, Cal, Caden and Camdyn.
Charlene Noreen Wasson
Charlene Noreen Wasson, of Whitewater, Montana was a three-year starter for the Skylight’s basketball team playing all four years with the Skylight’s from 1996-1997. During her career, she played on four Frontier Conference Championship teams and made four national tournament appearances. She was a three-year starter for the Skylight’s; a three-time All-Frontier Conference award winner her junior and senior years. She received several awards her senior year including the Frontier Conference MVP award. Wasson was named to the NAIA Division I All-American Second Team, the Pacific Northwest All Region team, and earned Academic All-Conference awards her senior year. She was also an MSU-Northern Student Excellence award winner. Wasson is currently the 4th all-time leading scorer in MSU-Northern Skylight’s history with 1,410 points. She lives in Whitewater, Montana with her husband, Trevor and their three children, Kia, Paige, and the new baby born in September. She teaches Elementary Physical Education and is a Title I Tutor for the Malta Public Schools.
Stacy L. Barnes
Stacy L. Barnes, of Great Falls, Montana, competed for the Skylight’s basketball team from 1993-97 on four Frontier Conference Championship teams and in four National tournaments. She was a three-year starter garnering All-Conference All-Pacific first team selections her junior year. Barnes was an All-Conference first team selection and player of the week three times her senior year as well as All-American Honorable Mention. She is the 6th all-time leading scorer in Skylight’s history with 1,250 points. Barnes is currently employed as a kindergarten teacher for the Great Falls Public Schools at Longfellow Elementary School.
Wendy Badgett Bekkedahl
A Broadus, Montana native, Wendy Badgett Bekkedahl, was a four-year starter for the Skylight’s basketball team from 1994-1997, playing on four Frontier Conference Championship teams that also made four National tournament appearances. As team captain for three years, Badgett earned All-Academic honors all four years. She will be recognized also for her achievements as a member of the MSU-Northern Rodeo team. She placed 4th in the Big Sky Region in Barrel Racing her sophomore year and was 2nd in the Big Sky Region in Breakaway Roping and 4th in the Nation in Breakaway Roping her senior year.
Kevin J. Owens
Kevin J. Owens of Hampton, Virginia was a four year player for the Light’s Basketball program from 1995-1998. During his freshman year, he led the team in rebounds, setting a new school record for a season with 306. That year, the Light’s won their first Frontier Conference Championship and became the first Montana team to ever reach the quarterfinals in the NAIA national tourney. Owens was selected as the Pacific Northwest Region player of the week his sophomore year and played on two more Frontier Conference Championship teams. One of the team captains his senior year, he finished his career at Northern in 5th place on the MSU-Northern all-time scoring list with 1,421 points having garnered all-conference and all-regional honors as well as NAIA All-American Honorable Mention honors.
Dan DeKaye, a Cut Bank, Montana native, competed from 1992-1996, wrestling at the 177 pound weight class for Northern. After redshirting his first year, he competed on the varsity team, placing 5th or higher three times at the NAIA National Tournament. DeKaye was ranked second nationally in 1995 and held the #1 ranking for ten weeks in 1996, finishing 2nd at the national tournament. A 3-time Northern Regional Champion, he was the team captain his junior and senior year. DeKaye won 6 of 8 tournaments his junior season and 6 of 7 his senior year, where he was voted tournament Outstanding Wrestler twice. His over-all college record was 97 wins and 23 losses. His junior and senior years he had an impressive 63-8 record with a total of 19 falls 88% win ratio. DeKaye graduated in 1996 with a degree in civil engineering technology with an associate’s degree in drafting. He is currently employed with Kiewit Corporation in management in their Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas Branch and has participated in 17 different projects including construction of a dam, bridges, airport runways and highway construction throughout Montana, Texas, Colorado, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Louisiana.
Receiving the Veteran Award this year is Al Faechner, of Great Falls, Montana. He attended MSU-Northern (then Northern Montana College) on a basketball scholarship for two years from 1951-53 graduating in the Pre-Business program. During his freshman year, Faechner scored 350 points in 24 games ranking second on the team to teammate Gene Espeland and led the team his second year. He set a record for scoring at the Junior College Regional Tournament at Dixie Junior College in Provo, Utah netting 37 points and a spot on the All-Tournament team in 1952. At that time, there were no 3 point shots and the quarters were only 8 minutes long. NMC was also the only Junior College in the league, so they competed against more seasoned juniors and seniors. Faechner also played baseball both years for Northern. After leaving Northern, he served two years in the Korean War. Returning to Montana, he married his college fiance, Joyce Ferrin, and continued his education at the College of Great Falls. After graduation, he worked in banking in Glasgow, Montana and, as President of the Glasgow Sports Club, he was instrumental in arranging a football game between Minot State and the NMC Lights in Glasgow which drew over 2,000 fans in 1969. He was President of Multisports which built the softball complex in Great Falls, in 1965.
Jodi Kruta was a recruit from Thief River Falls, Minnesota and played for the MSU-Northern Skylights basketball team from 1992 to 1996. As a three year starter, she played a key role in the four Frontier Conference Championships, four National Tournament appearances, and the 1993 District 12 Tournament and the 1993 National Championship for the Skylights. This is still the only National Championship to date of any Frontier Conference Women’s Basketball team. During this time, the teams won 100 games with only 18 losses. Kruta is the Skylights second all-time leading scorer with 1562 points and is one of only 9 Skylights to be an NAIA All-American. Her senior year she was an All American Honorable Mention, First Team All-Conference, and First Team Pacific Northwest Region. She was named the Frontier Conference Player of the Week four times during her career. The Skylights teams she played on also won the Bahamas Tournament in 1993, The Colorado College Holiday Tournament in 1994, and the Pacific Northwest Regional Championship in 1996. Kruta graduated in 1997 with a degree in Health and Physical Education. She lived in Norway to play team handball and became a member of the 1999 USA Team Handball National Team. She participated in the 1999 Pan American Games placing 4th in an attempt to qualify for the 2000 Olympic Games. She is currently teaching 6th-8th grade Physical Education and Health in Lovinggood Middle School in Georgia.
Anthony L. Taylor
Anthony L. Taylor wrestled in high school in Ohio and finished with 80 wins and 15 losses. He attended Lassen Community College in California in 1990 and after injuring his right ankle, he received a medical hardship his first year in which he had already amassed a 16-2 record. In 1992, he claimed the California Junior College State Championship with a record of 30-3 and transferred to Northern in 1993 where he placed second in the NAIA National Tournament as a sophomore and as a junior, losing first place by only one point. Both years, he was 24-4 at the 158 pound weight classification. In 1994, his senior year, he received a season ending knee injury and was ranked #1 in the NAIA National Ratings at the time. He was a two-time All-American and a National runner-up at 158 pounds. His record at Northern was 60 wins and 9 losses and his over-all collegiate career record was 106-14. Taylor was instrumental in the 1992 National Team Championship and the 1993 National Team Runner-up on teams that won two NAIA District 12 and Frontier Conference Championships along the way. Anthony Taylor was also a NWCA Academic All-American. He was an assistant coach at Northern for three seasons, during the remainder of his senior year and for the following two years, 1995 and 1996, while working on his Master's degree. Taylor is now working in Washington D.C. as a Federal Probation/Parole Officer with new responsibilities for training his colleagues.
Kristin Belle Lawrence
Kristin Belle Lawrence was a Skylight from 1991-1995 on teams with a win-loss record of 113-15, winning four Frontier Conference Championships, two District Championships and the 1993 Women's NAIA National Championship. She earned All-Conference 1st Team honors and 2nd team honors twice, all-district team honors, and four Conference Player of the Week selections. She earned second team All-American honors her sophomore year and three consecutive All-Conference honors. Lawrence, a Kodak All-American, The Skylights won both the Bahamas Tournament and the Colorado Springs Tournaments in which she was selected MVP. A Skylight's MVP and team captain, Lawrence is the 5th all-time leading scorer. During her career, the Skylights finished 6th at the national tourney in '92 before claiming the championship in '93. Lawrence played professional basketball in Tasmania, Australia in 1998.
Dan Shepherd, KOJM/KPQX radio broadcaster, and Barry Zanto have been the "Voice of the Lights and Skylights" for the last 30 years. They not only broadcast the University games, but the whole gamut of local sports contests and are also known as the voice of Blue Pony Sports having broadcast thousands of games for Class AA, A B and C high school and college sports, playoffs and championships. They will receive the Hall of Fame Meritorious Service Award for their contributions to Northern Athletics and all Montana sports.
Shepherd, a native of Chester, Montana was hired by KOJM in 1975 and volunteered for broadcast a football game in Malta. Appointed Sports Director in 1976, he asked his friend Barry Zanto to assist him with the stats in 1977. His community service includes Havre Youth Baseball, Boy Scouts, Past Vice President of the Havre Area Chamber of Commerce where he formed and was the first chairman of the Havre Athletic Committee, Past President of Havre Hill County Crimestoppers, and for about 10 years, with Barry Zanto, the duo were the auctioneers for the Northern Alumni Scholarship Social and Auction. He was recognized at the United Press International Sports Journalist of the Year in 1980 and was awarded the E.B. Craney Broadcasting Award recognizing excellence in Montana Broadcasting in 1989, 1992 and 1993 for Radio News Enterprise and the 2006 award for Sports Enterprise in June. Shepherd is currently an Account Executive with New Media Broadcasters.
Barry Zanto, a Geraldine, Montana native, is a 1970 NMC graduate and was a teacher and administrator with Havre Public Schools until his retirement in 2005. In 1967, he won the college championship doubles bowling championship with his partner, John Olson, competing against the College of Great Falls, Montana State University, the University of Montana, and Western Montana College. He began working for KOJM-AM, now KPQX, with Dan Shepherd as a statistician in 1977 and is the other member of the "Voice of the Lights and Skylights" duo that has earned statewide recognition and respect for their professional broadcasts of the MSU-Northern, Blue Pony, and north-central area sport events. He was the athletic director at Havre Middle School for 25 years and coached basketball for ten years, football for 29 years and track for 35 years. Zanto was the runner-up for Young Teacher of the Year for the Havre Jaycees in 1972. He has served on local Board of Directors for the Havre Bowling Association, Havre Youth Baseball Association, Men's Golf Association, Northern Lights Athletic and Scholarship Foundation, and the NMC Alumni Association. Zanto is a member of the Lions Club and is an Adoptive Parent for Skylight and Light basketball programs and now works part-time for Herberger's in Havre.
Kari Fike Filius & Kim Fike Finn
Kari Fike Filius '93 and Kim Fike Finn, ' 93, played an integral part in the drive for excellence that brought the first women's national title to Northern and to the Frontier Conference. They were key leaders in the "Decade of Dominance" in the Northern women's program and were well known for their outstanding work ethic and quiet leadership. The dynamic duo was a fearsome combination on the court. Their skill was undeniable and so consistently similar that it was hard to tell them apart. Off the court, they compiled an amazing record in the classroom, given their commitment to many extra hours of training and practice.
Filius and Finn both achieved Academic All Conference awards for three years and Academic AllAmerican honors in 1992 and 1993. They played on four Conference Championship and four District Championship teams and were both awarded the team's Best Defensive Player award for four years from 1989 1993; both received All Conference honors in 1993; both were Conference Player of the Week two times in their careers. Confidence in their leadership was evidenced by their coach, Sherry Winn, naming them team co captains in 1993 when the team went on to win the NAIA National Championship. They were loyal to the program and played their entire college careers at Northern.
Filius scored 1,181 points from the guard position, most often alongside her twin sister, Kim. She teaches Health Enhancement for Havre Public Schools and has coached basketball and cross country during her ten years in education. She has also earned her master's degree in education and is currently coaching her own children in their youth sports. Filius is married to Scott Filius, a 2002 Hall of Fame Wrestler, and they have three children, Peyton, Parker, and Sadie.
Kim Finn, of Big Timber, Montana has been in education for eight of the last ten years, working as a teacher's aide and then as a kindergarten teacher for five years in Reed Point, Montana. She is pursuing her Elementary Education degree and will be back in the classroom by 2006. Finn has coached high school and junior high basketball and track and is currently the assistant track coach at Sweet Grass County High School in Big Timber. She is active in coaching her sons in their favorite sports of soccer, basketball and baseball. Finn is married to Monte Finn and they have three children; Brent, Blake, and Bailey.
Deon C. Jones
Deon C. Jones, Class of '95, of Owings Mills, Maryland, was a four year starter from 1991-94 for the Lights, starting every game, every year. He earned All Conference, All District and Academic All American honors his sophomore year; All Conference and NAIA Academic All American his junior year; All Conference, Academic AllAmerican and MVP of the Conference in his senior year. He broke the men's all time scoring record, which he still holds, and was one of the best defenders for his size to have played at Northern. Jones still holds the records for most career free-throws for a career, most free-throws for a season, best free throw percentage in a season, scoring total for a career, and most career assists. Known as "Mr. Clutch" by his teammates, he was a tough minded floor general and one of the most athletically gifted, motivated and hard working athletes to play the game at Northern. His coach, Loren Baker, said that Deon Jones "may have been the best player to ever play for Northern: He had a tremendous work ethic and made such a commitment for all four years."
Chris Faber was a three time NAIA All-American in 1990, 1991, and 1992, placing eighth at 134 pounds at Nationals in 1990 when the Northern team was the National Runner up. He captained the team to back to back National Team Championships in 1991 and 1992 and was a National Runner up at 134 pounds during both years. Faber was a member of the 1990 USA All-American Cultural Exchange Team touring the Soviet Union and Finland. Featured on the cover of USA Wrestling News Magazine, he was a National Wrestling Coaches Association Academic All-American in 1990, 1991, and 1992. Faber received a Student Excellence Award in 1992 and graduated that year from Northern Montana College with a degree in Business Technology.
Kristi Kincaid of Northern Montana College earned the Most Valuable Player Award at the NAIA Division II National Tournament in 1993 when Northern won its first ever women's National Championship. A Junior College transfer from Central Arizona Junior College, Kincaid had played on their National Championship Team earning MVP honors there also. She came to Northern with two years of basketball eligibility and was selected as the Frontier Conference Player of the Week twice, and All Conference and National Tournament 1st Team in 1991-92. As a senior, she was an All-Conference selection, NAIA Tournament 1st team, and MVP of the 1993 National Championship team. She was a Kodak All-American and was selected for the Sports Illustrated "Faces in the Crowd" issue. Kincaid still holds the record for the highest field goal percentage for a season at 64.4 set in the 1991-92 season, and for the career field goal percentage at 61.6. Kincaid was also a volleyball standout and holds records for the most individual kills in a three game match at 25, most blocks in a single match with 12, and second in individual blocks in a season with 159 all set in 1993. She earned her bachelor's degree from Northern Arizona University in 1998 with a degree in Liberal Studies and Sociology.
The Northern Alumni Association's first ever Meritorious Service Award was given this year to Wells Lamey for his life long service to the youth of this community and the athletes of Northern Montana College and MSU-Northern. Lamey has researched, compiled, and recorded a listing of all the athletes, their achievements and records throughout the University's history, preserving them for the future and contributing the data for the NMC/MSUN history "A Northern Reflection". His leadership and research led to the establishment and success of Northern's Alumni Athletic Hall of Fame. The data and information he compiled has been instrumental in nearly every one of the Hall of Fame awards. His service to the community of Havre and to the youth programs is unparalleled. Lamey was a founding member of the Babe Ruth baseball program in Havre and coached the first Babe Ruth team to compete in a state tournament. He has coached 5th grade girls basketball and volunteers his time reading to students in the elementary school reading program. Lamey was President of the Havre Softball Association and coached both men's and women's slow pitch softball and refereed for many years. A founding member of the Havre Public Schools Foundation, he now serves as their President. He was a member of the Northern Alumni Association Board of Directors from 1995-1999. He has participated in the successful nominations of Kathy Jarvis, Glenn Havskjold, Julie Callahan and Skip Grodahl, outstanding Havre athletes to the Montana State University Hall of Fame in Bozeman. His knowledge and service to all sports and the athletes from the area schools, and to the MSU-Northern Lights and Skylights is well known.
Sheila Green Gerding
Sheila Green Gerding, is the all-time leading scorer in the Skylight’s program. One of the most highly sought after players out of high school, she was an impact player as a freshman and a three-year starter for the most successful women’s basketball program in Frontier Conference history. During her four years at Northern, they won four Frontier Conference Championships and made four trips to the National Tournament with a record of 126 wins and 12 losses. During their 1990 trip to the National Tournament, Green-Gerding finished third in the three-point shootout. An Academic All-Conference player for two years, she was known for her work ethic and her leadership. She was an All-Conference player three of her four years and in 1992, she was the District 12 MVP and the Frontier Conference Co-MVP when the team was ranked #1 in NAIA Division II. She was also named an NAIA II Kodak All-American.
After graduating from Northern, she was a graduate assistant coach at MSU-Billings for three years followed by a year in New Zealand playing semi-professional basketball. She was recognized as a New Zealand Top Five All-Star. She returned to finish her master’s degree in school counseling and took the head women’s basketball coaching position at Minot State where she has coached for the last eight years. In her first season, the team won their first ever conference title and went to the NAIA II National Tournament for the first time in school history. Since then, they have repeated twice and last season, they finished second in the DAC-10, losing in the conference championship game.
Jason Liles, was a 1979 graduate of Bowling Green State University in Ohio and a four year starter with more wins than any wrestler in that university’s history. He was the Most Valuable Wrestler his last three seasons. In 1982, he earned his master’s degree at Miami University where he was the assistant wrestling coach and helped develop three NCAA Division I All-Americans. The team won the Mid-America Conference title in 1984 and one wrestler was an alternate to the 1984 USA Olympic Freestyle team. Liles became the head coach at Northern Montana College in 1984 to take a successful program with to the next level. During his nine years at Northern, his teams won back-to-back National Championships in 1991 and 1992 and were runner-ups in 1990 and 1993. He recruited and developed six wrestlers who captured individual National Championships, forty-one wrestlers garnered All-American honors, and eight were Academic All-Americans. When he moved on to coach at South Dakota State University, he left the program in position to recruit and build on the success. The program has continued to excel and now has a total of six national team championships, 18 individual national champions, 119 All-American’s, and 15 Academic All-American’s. His programs have enriched the coaching ranks of Montana’s prep programs with many selected as Coach of the Year in their respective leagues.
His first year with SDSU, his team earned their highest national finish in twenty five years placing fourth in the NCAA Division II with two individual national champions. In 2001 the team placed second at the national tournament and he was named Coach of the Year. Last year, the team placed third at the national tournament and it was the school’s eighth straight top five finish. His teams have won the Division II National Duals twice. The program has produced 37 All-Americans, 11 National Champions, 29 All-Academic selections and three wrestlers have been named Outstanding Wrestler at the National Tournament. Their dual record stands at 80-36-1 with one of the toughest schedules in Division II.
Arnold M. Reed
Arnold M. Reed played basketball for Northern Montana College from 1936-38. This team was playing the game of basketball as the game of basketball itself was evolving. The required center jump after every basket had just been eliminated and it was the year before the one-handed jump shot was legal. Typical game scores were 58-34, 50-31, 41-25. Certainly, the next two inductees were head and shoulders above their peers in the fledgling small college basketball programs in the State of Montana.
After graduating from NMC with a two-year engineering degree, he transferred to Montana State College in Bozeman, Montana where he became a defensive standout for the Bobcats from 1938-1940. He chose not to play his last year of eligibility to take a teaching and coaching job at Stanford High School in Stanford, Montana where he taught math and science and coached all of the sports offered at the school. Reed continued to compete in various invitational tournaments and in 1947, he played on the top Pacific Northwest team, the Alpine Dairy when they placed 4th out of 64 teams at the National Amateur Athletic Union tournament in Denver, Colorado. During his career he played against such notable players as Bob Kurland, a 7’ center from the University of Oklahoma, Hank Luisette from Stanford University who introduced the one-handed shot to the game of basketball, Jim Pollard, Ace Grueing, Bud Browning, and original Globetrotters, Duke Cumberland and Babe Pressley of the Minneapolis Lakers. Reed retired from playing in 1949, but began a lifetime of assisting at basketball games. For many years until 1992 when he retired, he kept score at many a game. He still keeps time, picks place winners at Billings’ track meets, and is a timer and judge for the Big Sky State Games.
For over 35 years, he has worked with Montana schools and universities as the Jostens’ representative and is credited for helping build the Jostens’ company. He was named to the Jostens’ President’s Cabinet for his outstanding sales. For seventeen continuous years, he was the guest speaker at the annual salesman’s awards banquet. He was President of the Pacific Northwest Shrine Association, the oldest in North America, and he chaired the fundraising committee to build the Masonic Center in Billings, Montana. Active in Kiwanis, he was a member of the Golden “K” Club. In 1997, the Billings community recognized him with a “Celebration of Life” Award for distinguished service.
J. Worth Timmons
J. Worth Timmons, was born in Havre, Montana and grew up an avid sportsman, and participated in fishing, hunting, and bowling, but it was in baseball and basketball that he distinguished himself. As a teenager, he won a batting title at a competition camp in Missoula and received a bat that had been signed by Babe Ruth. Timmons competed for Havre High School on the football and basketball teams during the time that they acquired the name Blue Ponies after a sportswriter described the team executing a fast break.
An outstanding athlete for Northern, he played first base for the baseball team and was known for his defense and his home runs. He was named the Most Outstanding Center by the MCCA (Montana Collegiate Coaches Association) in his last year of competition for NMC. In addition to being voted to every All-Conference team, the Havre native finished that year as the 8th leading scorer in the conference with 121 points, in a tie with teammate Edward Morrison. Under the guidance of first year coach, the legendary R.V. “Sandy” Sandven, the All-Conference duo with Timmons at center and Reed, from Outlook, Montana at guard led the team to the SCC Co-Championship in 1938 with Billings Poly (now Rocky Mountain College) after placing second the year before. A stalwart on defense, Timmons led the team in rebounds and shots blocked and was also the assist leader, passing to teammate and co-inductee, Arnie Reed.
The son of well-known Havre and Hill County residents, R. C. “Doc” Timmons and his wife Clara, Worth studied engineering at Northern and in 1939 he was hired by the Montana Highway Department as a survey assistant. He joined the army in 1940 and was stationed in Seattle when Pearl Harbor was bombed. He served until 1946 in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in an artillery battalion and participated in the Battle of the Bulge in Germany. After the war, he resumed his career with the Montana Highway Department and, in 1949 he was transferred to Shelby, Montana as a project engineer. He often played basketball for the Shelby town team and it was in Shelby that he developed a passion for golf. He returned to Havre in 1967 to complete his career. Retiring in 1979, he and his wife Florence (McGuinn) moved to Arizona for an extended retirement of golf and travel. Worth Timmons passed away December 2, 2002, at the age of 84, in Lake Havasu City, Arizona.
Shelly Hermanson Burcaw
Shelly Hermanson Burcaw, of Brantwood, Wisconsin, was the first All-American athlete in MSU-Northern Skylight history. She was selected first team Frontier All-Conference and All-District player of the year in 1989-90 and 1990-91. Hermanson-Burcaw still holds four school and individual records, setting the record for most points in a single game with 38 points by breaking her own record of 34 points in a game with Central Washington University. She tied the Skylight individual record for most field goals set in that same game with 13. She owns the records for most career free throws with 383 and for most free throws attempted in a single season with 191. A co-captain of the 1990-91 record setting team, she led them in a 30-5 season where they set 5 new school records and tied two others, establishing a tradition of excellence unparalleled in the conference.
Scott A. Filius
A Billings Senior High School graduate, Scott A. Filius began his four time All-American collegiate wrestling career at North Idaho Junior College before transferring to Northern Montana College his junior year where he carried a 4.0 GPA and earned a third place finish in the NAIA National Wrestling Championships in Hays, Kansas. A three time Academic All-American, he was selected for a Student Excellence Award in 1990. In 1991, while maintaining his Academic All-American status, Filius achieved his individual National Championship as Northern coasted to its first ever team NAIA National Wrestling Championship in Butte, Montana. The team, coached by Jason Liles, advanced seven team members in the third round and four in the semi-finals, with three wrestling in the finals to protect the 22 ¼ point lead and the team championship. Filius has been the head coach at Havre High School since 1995 when his team took second at Divisionals and seventh at State. Since then, his teams have won five straight Divisional Championships and three State Championships, one second place and one third place finishes at State in the same five years. He has been Class A Coach of the Year three times. Held in high regard by the students at Havre High School, the graduating Class of 2001 selected him as their graduation speaker. His positive attitude and hard work ethic along with his commitment, dedication, and service to his students, his community, and the sport of wrestling have lead the Havre Blue Ponies to the respected position as a premier wrestling program in the state.
Patti (Weed) Franklin-Norby
Patti (Weed) Franklin-Norby was a co-captain of the 1991 Skylight Volleyball team that advanced to the NAIA National Tournament for the first time in school history and was selected to the six-member National All-Tournament team. She was selected as a second team All-American volleyball player. Franklin-Norbywas also named Frontier Conference MVP, District 12 MVP, and Northwest Region All-Region team and was selected to several all-tournament teams throughout the season. Her athletic abilities played a significant part in both of the MSU-Northern women's volleyball and basketball teams appearances in the NAIA National Tournaments. She was named Frontier Conference Academic All-Conference in both 1990 and 1991. A transfer from Western Montana College, she was a dual sport star, playing on the Skylight's basketball team that won two Frontier Conference Championships, two District 12 Championships, and made two NAIA National Tournament appearances. Set in only two seasons at Northern, she holds the school records for most kills in a single season with 623 set in 1991; most kills in a single five game match at 35 set in 1990; most kills in a single three game match at 25 set in 1991; highest kill efficiency at .320 set in 1991; career aces at 96; and second in career kills at 918. Franklin-Norby was awarded the Little Sullivan Award in recognition of her achievements.
Glenn R. Ennis
A dual sport athlete, Glenn R. Ennis earned honors in both basketball and tennis. In an accelerated academic program, he graduated in 1964 earning honor roll status every quarter. He was the Montana Collegiate Conference singles champion all three years at Northern and teamed with Doug Terry and Tom Llewellyn to win three straight doubles championships as well.
A long range shooter, he is the 10th place all-time leading scorer in men's basketball at Northern with 1009 points in a career that took place before the three point line was established. Ennis was a 2nd team All-Conference selection in his last year and was second in scoring to Don Miller his second year. As a student leader, he served as Vice-President of the student governing Central Board. After earning his Master's degree from Montana State he taught in the Medicine Hat schools for two years before accepting a job with Medicine Hat College as an instructor and senior men's basketball coach. He later became Dean of the College Preparation-Language Arts department until 1996 when he traveled to Moscow in the Russian Republic as an instructor at the Russian Canadian Fuel & Energy Training Center. Retiring in 1997, he spends his time between Fernie, British Columbia and Yuma, Arizona.
Donald R. Miller
Gildford native, Donald R. Miller, came to Northern as an Eastern Montana College Yellowjacket where he was second in scoring with 11.6 points per game and rebounding with 10.7 rebounds per game. He led his high school team, the Broncs, to a 3rd place finish at state his junior year and the 1960 State Class C Championship his senior year. He was selected to the first team All State team for the second year and was among the top 20 players in the state to play in the North-South game. A full tuition scholarship to Northern was offered and accepted and he went onto earn first team All Conference honors in 1962-63 and 1963-64, leading the team in scoring with 15.1 points per game and a total of 410 points, rebounding at a 13.3 average, and assists with 4.8 per game. Miller graduated in 1965 with a Farm and Ranch Management degree. He is active as a member of the Lutheran Church, is a volunteer fireman, has served on the local school board and farm co-op boards as well as the Montana Grain Gower's Association. He was a past recipient of the Farmer of the Year award.
Gerry D. Veis
Gerry D. Veis led his hometown, Scobey Spartans to the State Class C Championship in 1979 earning MVP honors and a first team All State Selection. He was one of the top Montana recruits that year and decided to play at Colby Community College in Colby, Kansas for two years where he was the MVP his second year. With Northern, he was chosen second team All Conference in his junior year, and first team All Conference and first team NAIA All District 12 in his senior year when he led the conference in scoring with 21 points per game. A 1983 Northern graduate, Veis is second in the Northern record book for total points in a season at 590 and scored 920 points in two years. He actively supports and coaches girl's softball, grade school boys and girls basketball, and Little League Baseball and served on the boards of United Way, East End Rehabilitation, Havre Day Activity Center, the Havre Public Schools Board of Trustees, and was President of the Northern Alumni Association Board.
Sam Nelson, a multi-year letter winner in football, played both offense and defense during his four years at Northern, serving as co-captain in 1967 and 1968. He was the starting offensive center and defensive middle linebacker, earning MVP, all-conference and all-division honors for three years. A dual sport athlete for Northern, Nelson played baseball for four years also. After graduating from Northern in 1970, he taught Physical Education, Industrial Arts, and Driver's Education and coached football, basketball and track for 28 years in Bozeman, Montana, retiring in 1997. He now owns an antique business and builds custom furniture.
Havre native Rick Shulund, a 1967 Northern graduate, is the only Northern Light's football player to earn All-MCC honors four years in a row. Playing both offense and defense, Shulund was a team co-captain for the two consecutive division fides for NMC. Known as a team leader, he returned to NMC to assist with the 1971-72 squad. Shulund has taught in Terry, Valier, and Harlem and coached football, wrestling, and track during his years in education. Having worked a number of years in construction, he now spends his time farming He has been active in youth baseball, wrestling and basketball programs as well as serving as a 4H leader.
Barb Filipowicz VanderMars
Barb Filipowicz VanderMars, a 1982 Northern graduate, is a Great Falls native. She was a team leader for the Great Falls Bison's back to back State Championships. The most highly recruited high school basketball player in the state, she was a key recruit for the fledgling Skylight's women's basketball program enabling it to immediately contend for the Frontier Conference Championships. The best rebounder in Skylight basketball history, she earned Honorable Mention All-American honors and still holds three rebounding records for most rebounds in a single season at 332 rebounds, most rebounds in a game at 22, and the highest rebounding average per game of 11.6. She is second in career rebounds with 859. The Skylight's won their first conference basketball title during her sophomore year. She averaged double figures in both scoring and rebounding for two consecutive seasons her freshman and sophomore years. She is considered the first building block in the development of the women's basketball program that has earned (I I conference championships in 12) years. VanderMars is living in Clancy, Montana, and is a claims adjuster for Cigna Worker's Compensation. She is involved in youth basketball and coaches her daughter's team.
Larry D. Winters
Larry D. Winters of Bloomington, Indiana, was a 1982 graduate of Northern. As a team leader, he was able to dominate the conference with his all-around ability. He is in the top 20 in scoring for Northern basketball players and was noted for his ability to elevate his level of play and help his teammates do the same. Winters earned many honors during his career at Northern, including first team all-conference, NAIA All District 12 team selection, and an All-American Honorable Mention. A scholar and an athlete, Larry has earned his Master's Degree in Education from Indiana Wesleyan University with a 4.0 GPA. He was a respected and valued member of the community and contributed his time and talent coaching in the community and school youth programs in Havre. Larry is currently teaching Adaptive Physical Education, Personal Fitness, Basic Physical Education and Weight Training at Bloomington High School South. He has worked as a sports coordinator for Westside Community Center for eleven years, developing programs for both youth and adults. Larry coached boy's basketball since 1983, but became the varsity girl's head coach in 1999. He has also been the advisor of the Black Culture Club since 1991.
Robert Adams was a member of the Northern Montana College (NMC) men's basketball team during the '46-'47 and '47-'48 seasons. He was named an All-Frontier Conference player both years and later coached division winning high school teams in both Chester and Superior, Montana. He then received his bachelor's degree in Secondary Education with a business minor from the University of Montana and worked for Conoco for 24 years, where he was ranked in the top 5% of the company's employees. He earned the position of District Manager, supervising marketing in eight western states. He enjoyed golf, and over the years taught many of his co-workers how to ski and snowmobile.
Keith Evenson graduated from NMC in 1967 where he was a member of the 1967 men's golf team that went undefeated in Frontier Conference play and lost only two matches the whole season, taking the Frontier Conference golf crown. The team earned their way to the national tournament in often took individual honors at meets throughout that season. He has since been active in the Havre golf community, establishing a golf program at Havre Middle School and serving as the coach for 12 years. He is now the varsity golf coach at Havre High School, a position he has held for the past four seasons. Evenson is also a past winner of the Havre City golf championship and a past president of the Beaver Creek Men's Golf Association.
Dick Scharfe graduated from NMC in 1967 where he was a member of the 1967 men's golf team. Scharfe led this all-star team to the Frontier Conference Golf Crown his senior year by winning the Frontier Conference individual title. He then joined the team as they went on to represent Montana at the NAIA National Tournament in Iowa later that year. Scharfe has worked in private accounting for Potlatch Forests, Inc. and in public accounting. He opened his own practice in 1990, and has continued to be active in the Havre golf community as a member of the Havre Men's Golf Association. He also helped to organize the Havre Girls' Softball Association and served on their board of directors.
Nadine (Sneed) Clarke
Nadine (Sneed) Clarke graduated from Northern in 1984 where she led the Skylight's to their first ever Frontier Conference Championship and twice drew first team Frontier Conference honors. After graduation she taught and coached successful volleyball and basketball teams in Harlem, Montana and Douglas, Wyoming before receiving her master's degree in Exercise Science from University of Denver. She then managed Pacific Bell's Corporate Wellness program in Southern California for eight years, during which time the wellness program won several awards for excellence. Since November 1998, she has been employed by Pacific Telesis Group as a Staffing Consultant.
Marv Sunderland graduated from NMC in 1967 where he was an All-Frontier Conference football player who has since gone on to make a name for himself in the world of NFL football. He signed with both the New Orleans Saints and the Calgary Stampeders but did not play for either team, opting instead to teach and coach. From 1967-70 he coached football at Chinook and Hardin High Schools in Montana, before becoming a coach and scout for North Dakota State University. From there he became a scout for the New England Patriots and then served as head scout for the New York Jets for 20 years. He was named one of the top ten scouts in the NFL and in 1998 became Player Personnel Director for the New York Giants.
Kim L. Haines
Kim L. Haines, Seeley Lake, currently holds the title for the most wins as an active boys' basketball coach for the State of Montana with over 500 wins. His love for and knowledge of basketball were seen back in 1953 when he played on the Northern Montana College (now MSU-Northern) basketball team, earning All-Conference honors his sophomore and senior years. During one of his years at Northern, the team made the NAIA playoffs. He put his education and basketball on hold in 1955 to join the service, and then he returned to complete his degree from Northern in 1960.
After earning a master's degree in 1964 from the University of Northern Iowa, he became the principal, athletic director and coach at Seeley-Swan High School. Since then, he has won many awards including: the MCA Class C Coach of the Year for boys' basketball (1968), recognition for developing the girls' and boys' track programs in Montana (1982), USA Track and Field Presidents Award - Recognition of Outstanding Effort and Achievement (1985), Frank Sevigne Award (1988), elected as the National Youth Track and Field Chairman for USA Track and Field's National governing body (1989), Ray Rocene Award, Sportsman of the Year as awarded by the Missoulian (1991) and the Montana Coaches Hall of Fame (1992).
Robert J. Hodge
Robert J. Hodge, Missoula, holds Northern's records for the most rushing yards at 1108 yards, total points scored in a single season and the career scoring records in football. Respected by his teammates for his abilities to capitalize on their efforts and exploit the opponent's defense, he was a leader on and off the football field. He was recruited as a kicking specialist and handled the kicking duties on fields goals, extra points and kickoffs. Bob was an All-Conference running back for four years and an honorable mention All-American. Since college, Bob has been teaching Industrial Arts for more than 27 years, currently at Florence-Carlton High School. During these years, he has worked with the youth in his community by coaching football, track and wrestling.
Don Hull, Chester, is one of the best examples of commitment, dedication and drive to ever set foot on a Northern basketball court. As team captain, Don led the team in field goal and free throw percentages, scoring, rebounding and defense. Known for his hustle and work ethic, Don was twice named to the All-Conference Honorable Mention team. Don has been farming and ranching since graduating from Northern. He maintains his involvement in sports and his community as a referee for college and junior high girls' and boys' basketball games. He also works with high school football games, coaches at the Big Sky State Games, umpires softball games in the summer and plays intramural basketball in the winter.
Mike Mazurkiewicz, Havre, still holds the record for the most wrestling wins (127) in Northern's history. He was an assistant wrestling coach at Northern from 1988-1990. A two-time All-American, he helped his team become District 12 Champions by bringing home third and fifth place finishes at the NAIA National Tournament. Mike has held the school records for wins, takedowns, escapes, team points and match points. In 1990, Mike began work as an assistant wrestling coach for Havre High School where he helped the team to place at the state and divisional levels in 1991, 1992, and 1994. Currently, Mike is the head wrestling coach for the Havre Wrestling Club.
Arnie Keck taught and coached at Northern from 1963 through 1968, holding the positions of athletic director, athletic trainer, PE instructor, swimming coach, baseball coach, and assistant football coach. Keck's swim program produced several Conference Championships and NAIA All American swimmers, including Little Sullivan Award winner Chad Chadwick in 1967. Keck was named District Coach of the Year in 1965. His service to athletics didn't stop at NMC however. He helped coach and organize swim meets and practices for the Havre Lions Swim Team where he and Harvey Welch coached many state champions. Many of these athletes also went on to receive swimming scholarships at larger schools. In 1968 he accepted a position as assistant professor of physical therapy at the University of North Dakota-Grand Forks. He worked as a physical therapist in Oregon from 1974 to 1978, taught anatomy at the University of California at Davis from 1978 to 1981 when he returned to the UND faculty. Currently an assistant professor in the Department of Physical Therapy and an adjunct instructor in the Department of Anatomy at UND, Keck retired in December, 1996.
Andrea Anderson graduated from Northern in 1987 with a degree in Business Technology. She has worked for Northwestern Mutual Life and Baird Securities in Bozeman, MT, for the past ten years and is consistently ranked in the top 10 Montana agents and top 1000 agents nationwide for NML. She received that National Sales Award and the National Quality Award from the National Association of Life Underwriters. Anderson is a member of the local United Way board, is president of the Gallatin County Republican Women and vice president of the National Wild Turkey Federation, an organization dedicated to reintroducing wild turkeys into Gallatin County. She and husband Arron Wass have one son, Andrew, born in April of 1995.
Anderson holds three Skylight individual career records: most rebounds (909), most field goals (612) and the highest points per game average of 15.2 for four years. She also holds four individual field goals, and highest scoring average. Coach Loren Baker credits Anderson with helping make Northern a national power and leading her teams to four conference championships, earning all-conference and all-district honors.
A multi-sport athlete, Sue Gorton was an All-Conference volleyball and basketball player for the Northern Skylights and received All-District honors in basketball her senior year. A business major with a 3.25 grade point average, Gorton also received All-Conference Academic honors. As Skylight captain, she led her team to both Frontier Conference and district titles. In nominating Gorton, teammate Katie Heath stated "I believe the winning tradition Skylight athletics has built is a direct result of student athletes like Sue."
Gorton has been in retail management with Herberger's Department Stores in Kalispell for the past ten years. As an employee of a pacesetter company for United Way, she participates in the annual campaign and has served on the Citizen's Review Panel. Sue enjoys playing volleyball, basketball and skiing in the Flathead Valley.
Butch Marshall attended NMC on an athletic scholarship and played basketball for the Lights from 1974 to 1978. He also participated in track during that time and is the only male NMC athlete to compete at the NAIA track and field championships his sophomore and junior years.
He graduated from NMC in 1979 with an elementary education degree and later earned his master's degree from NMC in 1989. During his first teaching position at White Sulphur Springs he coached junior high boy's basketball, "C" squad, and track and was assistant coach for girls varsity basketball. He has served as sixth grade teacher and administrative assistant at KG Elementary School since 1981 and has coached and assisted with varsity girl's and boy's basketball, junior high boys and girls basketball, and track. He was a member of the Montana Officials Association from 1987 to 1993, officiating several district and divisional tournaments for class A and C schools. Marshall is active in the Kremlin and Gildford communities as a member of the KG Booster Club and coach and umpire for youth baseball teams. He and wife, Cindy, have been married for 20 years and they have two sons, Adam and Eric.
Alumnus Charles Goligoski lettered in basketball, baseball and tennis for two years at Northern and served as sports editor for the NoMoCo student newspaper from 1950 to 1951. He was named second team All-conference for the 1950-51 season and was the Montana Small College singles tennis champion in 1951. He so impresses the scouts at the Regional National Junior College basketball tournament, he was offered a scholarship to Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington. He served as a varsity assistant basketball coach and freshmen basketball coach at Gonzaga until 1955, when he received an ROTC commission as a 2nd lieutenant in the US Army.
He returned to civilian life in 1957 as a high school teacher and coach at Republic Washington, coached and taught at Butte Central High School, was a graduate assistant varsity basketball coach at MSU-Bozeman, and had an outstanding career as head basketball, head cross country, assistant football, assistant track coach and teacher at Flathead High School. His teams played for the stat4 title in basketball three straight years, 1968 to 1970, winning the championship in 1970. He served as chairman of the English Department from 1980 until his retirement in 1990.
A 1963 Havre High School graduate, Jim Kravik attended Montana Tech his freshman year, then transferred to Northern where he lettered in football, basketball and baseball. He was named to the All-Conference basketball team in 1967-68. While a student at NMC, he co-published an independent newspaper called "Sidelights," was a sports editor for the school paper and yearbook, edited a column called "Locker Room Shorts," and was a member of the Northern Signers. An American history teacher in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho for the past 27 years, he chaired the social studies department at Lake County High School for 7 years.
Jim stayed involved in athletics throughout his teaching career. He coached basketball for 20 years. Jim began officiating basketball in 1968 and high school football in 1971, served as president of the North Idaho Official's Association and was appointed assigning commissioner for Region I and served there for 15 years. He also officiated college football. He continues to work in college football in the Northwest Intercollegiate Conference.
Bob Parsley came to Northern from a successful high school basketball career at Wolf Point High School where he set several records in both basketball and track. He attended Carol College for one year, then was recruited by coach Joe McDonald to play basketball for NMC. While at Northern, Bob's leadership, scoring ability, quickness and finesse earned him All Frontier Conference and Most Valuable Player of the Year in NAIA District 5. He was elected co-captain of the Lights and during the 1967-68 season, led the team in scoring free throws and rebounding. During his junior year, he also competed in track and place in the javelin at the Frontier Conference track meet.
He graduated from NMC in 1969, taught and coached at Kremlin and later KG High School from 1960-1973. Then he was named the Indian Education Specialist for the Office of Public Instruction (OPI) in Helena. He was promoted to Equity Division Administrator in 190 and planned to retire from OPI spring of 1996.
Though NMC's participation in football from 1965 to 1972 was short-lived, under first-year coach Tom Reynolds' leadership the team won a divisional championship in 1965 and five Northern Lights were named to the Montana Collegiate Conference (MCC) championship team. The teams' overall record was 5-2 and conference record was 4-1. The team won the second MCC divisional championship that year, the only two grid titles in the school's history. Later that year, Tom was named MCC football coach of the year. In 1971, the NMC baseball team under coach Reynolds shared the Frontier Conference championship with Eastern Montana College and advanced to the Northwest regional baseball play-offs ultimately winning a berth in the Regional NAIA play-offs. In 1976, he developed a booster club for athletics and initiated an annual fund drive, an effort which has grown today to include institutional fund raising activities as the Northern Foundation. He was named Director of Development in 1979 and following his retirement from the MSU-Northern faculty, was hired by the Foundation as executive Director.
A native of Great Falls and graduate of CM Russell High School, Joe Aline lettered all four years at NMC and compiled an outstanding career record of 109 wins - 22 loses. Joe qualified for NAIA national tournament honors by placing eighth in 1982 and fifth in 1984. He was the first two-time All-American and first Academic All-American at Northern. He serves as assistant wrestling coach at Great Falls High and was unable to personally accept the award because he was with the Bisons at the State Wrestling Tournament in Billings. His brother, Terry, who was also an outstanding wrestler at Northern, accepted on his behalf.
Dr. David Greenwood
Dr. David Greenwood established Northern's wrestling program in 1970 and produced eight NAIA All-Americans during his tenure, leading his teams to Frontier Conference championships in 1976 and 1984. He also coached Northern's only undefeated dual meet season at 10-0 in 1984. He retired from the college faculty in 1989 as a professor of health, physical education and recreation.
Cut Bank native, Steve Johnstone was a walk-on player his freshman year at Northern and then went on to letter in basketball, baseball and golf. He was voted first-team All-Conference as a junior and was named to "Who's Who" in college athletes his senior year. As a senior and team captain, he averaged over 22 points per game and remains among the leading seasonal scorers in Northern's record books.
Havre High School graduate Bob O'Donnell captained the Northern basketball team during the 1947-48 and 48-49 seasons and made All-American both years at a time when NMC was a two-year school competing against four-year schools.
Larry Schwenke's 13 varsity letters have distinguished him as the most active athlete in Northern's history, a record that will probably remain unbroken since football, baseball, track and golf are no longer varsity sports at the University. He was All-Conference in football from 1965 to 1968, and was named to "Outstanding College Athletes of America" in 1969.
Dr. Richard Ruetten
Dr. Richard Ruetten was the leading player for the Northern Lights basketball team during the 1948-49 season with 347 points, 114 field goals, and 119 free throws averaging 18.3 points per game as the Light's post man. Although an outstanding athlete at NMC, he is probably better known throughout the country as an eminent historian. After leaving NMC, Richard went on to earn a Ph.D. in history and taught at San Diego State University for 30 years before retiring as professor emeritus in 199 1. He received a prestigious Truman Research Associate appointment which led to Quest and Response: Minority Rights and the Truman Administration (1973), a Pulitzer nominated book he co-authored with Donald R. McCoy. University of Montana history professor Robert Lindsay wrote to say "Dick arrived at the University of Oregon to begin his graduate education with what many of his fellow graduate students and some faculty members viewed as weak academic credentials. Part of his undergraduate work included courses taken at an unknown junior college... NMC. They soon changed their minds. By the time Dick received his Ph.D. he was recognized by students and faculty as being one of the future stars in his profession."
From 1950 to 1952 the Northern Lights were led by center John Kuhr, a Havre High School graduate. Freshman class president and an Honor student, Kuhr was the leading scorer with 546 points in 33 games for a 16.5 per game average. The Lights finished second in the conference with a 23-10 record and placed fourth at the Regional Junior College Tournament at Ogden Utah. The leading tourney scorer, Kuhr was named MVP and received a basketball scholarship to the University of Utah, where he lettered two years. In a letter of support for John's nomination, his former NMC coach Ole Larson stated: "this talented team had a love affair with basketball which was out of the ordinary. John and others would come to our house on Saturday morning, Sunday afternoon and during holidays to practice. Their enthusiasm carried over into games and was the real reason for a successful winning season." John earned his Juris Doctor at the University of Michigan and is presently an attorney in Havre, well known for his voluntary service in the public sector.
Marcia Keller Carillo
An outstanding age-group swimmer who began AAU competition at age 14, Marcia Keller Carillo was the first woman to compete in varsity sports at NMC and was the first and only woman on the NMC swim team in 1964. She was chosen for a special award by the AAU swim committee as the outstanding senior girls swimmer in Montana and was selected to be a member of the Montana All-Star team competing in three successive international meets. She held eight state records in freestyle and individual medley events. She competed successfully, was awarded a varsity letter and made a member of the "M" Club in 1965. A letter of support for Marcia's nomination called her "one of the true pioneers in women's athletics."
Max Erickson came to NMC from Great Falls with an impressive record and during his three years with the NMC swim team set a variety of records in breast stroke competition. Max competed in NAIA national events in 1967 and placed seventh in the 200-yard breast stroke and tenth in the 100-yard backstroke. He competed in the NAIA nationals in Buffalo, New York, and again in St. Cloud, Minnesota. Erickson went on to coach both high school and age group swimming and led both girls and boys high school swim teams to state championships. He currently holds the title of Vice President with a local investment firm.
Chad Chadwick also set new records at every level in the 50 and 100 yard freestyle events. He placed sixth in the 100-yard and tenth in the 200 yard freestyle events at the NAIA national competition in the Spring of 1966. Chad received the Little Sullivan award as the outstanding male athlete in Montana in 1966. After graduating from NMC in 1970, Chadwick co-owned a mountaineer school in Red Lodge, Montana. He still climbs rock and ice and competed in triathlons until his 40th birthday. He lives in his hometown of Billings, and specializes in oil refinery maintenance.
While a member of the NMC swim team, Bill Sever was nationally recognized for setting new records in swimming in addition to setting pool, college and AAU records. Sever won the 200 individual medley and 200 freestyle competition at the National NAIA meet and was named first team All-American in 1966. He set records in the 500-yard free-style and the 200-yard breaststroke. An all-around athlete, he was also a member of the NMC football team. Sever returned to his home town and went to work for the City of Butte and later joined the Butte Police Department, a profession he has pursued for over 20 years.
Bob Lanning is one of only two NMC football players selected for the professional ranks and in 1968 was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers. He won nine letters at Big Sandy High School in football, track and basketball, played on a state champion hoop team and was named all-state forward. He lettered four years in football at NMC and made the All-Conference team three times. He also lettered in basketball. Bob began his coaching and teaching career at Big Sandy and was named head basketball coach at Havre High School in 1979, leading the Blue Ponies to three divisional titles, a third place and two fourth place state finishes, and this year -- days after the award presentation -- the schools first state championship in over 50 years. A three-time Coach of the Year nominee in boy's basketball and girl's track, Lanning has served the Montana Coach's Association as Vice President and President. Bob and the Ponies were in Butte the evening of the award presentation working on their divisional title. Rusty Danreuther, an alumnus of Bob's basketball program, accepted the award for Bob.
R.W. "Sandy" Sandven
Coach R.W. "Sandy" Sandven coached basketball, baseball, golf and tennis at NMC and was Athletic Director from 1937 to 1948. At that time, the College was a two-year school and his teams shared the gym facilities at Havre High School. He guided the Northern Lights to the College's first state basketball championship in 1938 and his baseball and golf teams also won conference championships. Coach Sandven was not able attend the awards presentation, but he wrote to say: "NMC was my first college teaching job and it was a memorable learning experience in a perfect setting of excellent faculty, great administration and the finest and best possible student body. I am indeed honored to be inducted as a coach into your Athletic Hall of Fame. This pleasure is added to the whole Montana experience which was and still is a wonderful and cherished part of my life. You have made an 88-year-old man very happy." His good friend Don Vaupel accepted the award on his behalf.