BLAST FROM THE PAST: Suman, Schnaible, Kruger enjoy 1986 spring successWORTHINGTON — While 46-year-old golf legend Jack Nicklaus was dominating the national sports headlines during the middle of April — 25 years ago — with his incredible final round of 65 which gave him the 1986 Masters golf championship in dramatic comeback fashion, several area athletes were making news in the Daily Globe sports pages.
By: Les Knutson, Worthington Daily Globe
WORTHINGTON — While 46-year-old golf legend Jack Nicklaus was dominating the national sports headlines during the middle of April — 25 years ago — with his incredible final round of 65 which gave him the 1986 Masters golf championship in dramatic comeback fashion, several area athletes were making news in the Daily Globe sports pages.
Among those who enjoyed spring success when “Kiss” by Prince (and the Revolution) was replacing Falco’s “Rock Me Amadeus” as Billboard’s most-popular song and “Addicted to Love” by Robert Palmer was climbing the charts, were Worthington’s Katy Suman, Adrian’s Blaine Schnaible and Round Lake’s Scott Kruger.
In the middle of April of 1986, the Boston Celtics had just finished the regular season with an outstanding record of 67-15 — the fourth best in NBA history at the time.
The Minnesota North Stars had just been eliminated (6-3) by the St. Louis Blues in the first round of the playoffs before 15,953 screaming fans at the Met Sports Center in Bloomington and Twins’ third baseman Gary Gaetti had blasted a two-run 10th-inning homer, lifting Minnesota to a 7-5 victory over Oakland at the Metrodome, snapping an early-season four-game losing streak.
Dan Lohre, Jim Lutmer, Mel Tennessen and Jim Gearman were selling cars at Spomer’s Motors in Worthington; “A Nightmare on Elm Street 2,” “Police Academy 3 Back in Training,” and “Murphy’s Romance” were all playing at the Northland Cinema in the mall; CBS was airing its mini-series “Dream West,” starring Richard Chamberlain and McDonald’s was advertising a limited time offer of hamburgers for 29 cents and cheeseburgers were selling for 39 cents.
RCA’s ProWonder Camcorder was a hot new item at Rickbeil’s Sound Town on 10th Street.
It was the middle of April and as another southwestern Minnesota spring sports’ season got underway, Suman made headlines by setting a new Worthington High School school record in the girls’ long jump at a meet in Brandon, S.D. on Saturday, April 12.
Suman, who was a thundering spiker in volleyball and outstanding rebounder in basketball, leaped 17 feet, 6½ inches to win the long jump, while also finishing first in the 200-meter dash (28.45), second in the high jump (4-8) and fifth in the 100-meter high hurdles (18.51).
Worthington’s sprint medley (200-200-400-800) relay team of Jean Pass, Cindy Peters, Sarah Werner and Michele Moret also came home with first-place medals after churning the four-lap race in 4:50.1
Schnaible, who was a three-sport star (football, basketball and baseball) at Adrian High School before graduating in 1985, was a freshman pitcher on Southwest State’s junior varsity in April of ’86.
On Wednesday, the 16th, Schnaible came to town and blanked the Worthington Community College Bluejays in a complete-game (seven innings) 11-0 victory, as he struck out nine and allowed only one hit.
WCC, however, cracked nine hits — including a trio of doubles — in the nightcap and nearly rallied for a victory against the Mustangs, falling short by a 6-5 final.
Leadoff hitter Chuck Wolff, along with John Rickers and Doug Lutmer each had two hits for the Bluejays, while Rickers, Dana Oberloh and Jerry Caraway each smacked doubles in the contest.
That same day, Kruger ripped a third-inning grand slam home run to spark Sioux Valley-Round Lake-Brewster to a 12-4 Red Rock Conference high school baseball victory over Storden-Jeffers.
Kruger finished the game with three hits and six RBI, while teammate Mark Murphy drove in a pair of runs on four hits.
At Windom’s Island Park, the two-time defending Class A state champion Eagles earned 6-0 and 9-4 wins over Jackson in a Southwest Conference doubleheader.
Chad Lindaman pitched a three-hit shutout, while striking out nine, to pace Windom in the first game.
Jeff Schmidt, Scott Foley and Lindaman each had two hits for the Eagles in the first game, while Wade Wacker, Chris Handevidt and Randy Schmit had Jackson’s hits.
Chet Meyer was Windom’s winning pitcher in the second game with Lance Jackson working the seventh.
Lindaman was two-for-four to lead the Eagles at the plate, while Jim Sotebeer contributed a double.
Schmit had a double for the Bluejays.
Youth wrestlers shine at Little E-Hawk tourney
Five individual championships were claimed by 13 Worthington youth wrestlers at the 14th annual Little E-Hawk Tournament in Emmetsburg, Iowa over the same weekend that Nicklaus was claiming his sixth Masters’ title.
Kyle Feit won a Bantam Division blue ribbon, while Todd Waller, Tom Funk and Jeff Smith each earned a championship in the Junior Division and Kevin Feit took top honors in the Elite Division.
Jason Reitmier and Jason Edwards both claimed second-place finishes in the Junior Division, while Travis Funk did the same in the Senior Division.
Tim Meyer captured a fourth-place finish in the Senior Division and four wrestlers placed in the Elite Division as Danny Blankenship earned a fourth and the trio of Kirk Feit, Mike Van Ness and Troy Hoffman each finished fifth.
It’s not surprising that many of those wrestlers went on to have tremendous success at the high school level a few years later.
Voss scores 36 in Faith Christian’s 1990 District 8 tournament upset
While it has been three weeks since the 2011 boys’ state tournament put the finishing touches on another outstanding high school basketball season — and it has now been 12 days since the University of Connecticut defeated Butler in the championship game of a surprise-filled NCAA men’s tournament, the stretched-out NBA playoffs start their two-month journey tonight.
So, basketball season is not completely over.
With that mind, I still would like to complete some unfinished business and tell the tale of Faith Christian High School’s stunning 1990 District 8 tournament victory over Southwest Christian.
Leading the Falcons to that tournament win was Bryan Voss — whose ‘soft touch’ netted 36 points for the Bigelow-based school and propelled Faith Christian to the next round.
Researching the events of that memorable game and Faith’s ’89-90 season will be the goal of an upcoming “Blast from the Past.”