This is a layup winner in a name game when you’re old enough to remember and to have embraced Minnesota’s one-class boys’ basketball state tournament:
Q: Henning? A: The 6-foot-5 Peterson twins, Bob and Dick.
The Hornets came out of a village of fewer than 900 people in Otter Tail County to win the District 22 and Region 6 titles in 1965 and 1966. They went 1-2 in both visits to the state tournament.
The highlight was a loss in an infamous game, Hornets vs. Hornets:
Edina-Morningside defeated Henning 62-55 in three overtimes in the 1966 semifinals. Edina downed Duluth East the next night for the first of three consecutive titles.
The Petersons had scored 46 of Henning’s 55 points and left the city kids dazzled.
“Those Petersons … they’re too much,” Edina’s Kurt Schellhas said. “We’d get a basket and one of them would pop one from the corner.”
In today’s giant world of Division I hoops, the Petersons would have been midmajor recruits. Back then, they went 90 miles to Moorhead and became Hall of Famers for the Concordia Cobbers.
Fifty-three years later, Henning has a shot to get back to the state tourney — in Class 1A, the smallest of four classes. In most sports, Henning joins Battle Lake as the Otter Tail Central Bulldogs, but in basketball they remain separate as the Hornets and Battlers.
Henning stands at 22-0 and was rated No. 7 in the latest coaches poll. And now comes the family angle:
These Hornets have two pairs of twins, Lee and Luke Bjorklund and Blake and Blaine Wallevand. There’s an older Bjorklund, Jack, on the team. The five of them are first cousins.
There are two more sets of brothers, Sam and Isaac Fisher and Brandon and Dylan Trana. The Fishers and Bjorklunds are first cousins.
Also: Jackson Nyhus, a Hornets reserve, has a twin, Grace. Coach Randy Misegades is an uncle to the Wallevands. Joe Joerger was a sophomore reserve for Henning in 1966 and now his son Dave coaches the Sacramento Kings.
There are other intriguing family connections to Hornets past, but I already have a headache.
Read Reusse’s blog at startribune.com/patrick.
Other items in the Minneapolis Tribune’s March 26, 1966, sports section:
• The Twins beat Boston 9-0 in an exhibition in San Juan, Puerto Rico. That gave the Twins 16 straight wins over the “hapless” Red Sox — the last 15 of the 1965 season and now a Grapefruit League game.
• Headline: “Stanky Called Out Without a Strike.” White Sox manager Eddie Stanky went fishing for three hours and didn’t catch anything.
• A youth from Shreveport, La., set a national record for the javelin throw of 240 feet, 2 inches. His name was Terry Bradshaw.