Hamline News

Two Ex-Piper Hoopsters Make Pioneer Press All-Time Top 100 List

This weekend marks the 100th anniversary of the Minnesota State High School Boys' Basketball Tournament. Among the many celebrations is a list compiled by the St. Paul Pioneer Press of the top 100 performers ever to appear in a state tournament. Two of Hamline's all-time greats made the list for their prep exploits. Jim Fritsche landed at No. 20 for his efforts in leading St. Paul Humboldt to the 1949 state title. Fritsche's team defeated Mankato 47-35 for the single school state title. Fritsche led the tournament in scoring that season with a 23.3 ppg average. At the time, it was the third best average for a tournament performer. Humboldt has not appeared in a tournament since then. Fritsche played here from 1949-53 A 6-8 center, he went on to play two seasons in the NBA and is on the Row of Honor that adorns Hutton arena.

Hal Haskins is best remembered for his days as an All-American guard/forward at Hamline and being named the Most Valuable Player of the 1949 NAIA Tournament, which Hamline won. He later went on to play in the NPBL (National Professional Basketball League). Long before that, though, Haskins, who is listed as No. 33 on the PP list, spearheaded Alexandria to the 1943 state tournament. Haskins led all preps scorers in the tournament that year, averaging 19 points per game. The Cardinals lost the state title game to St. Paul Washington, 52-33. Alexandria made only one more appearance in the one-class tournament after Haskins left.

The entire list, which features many MIAC players (as well as some players who went on to be coaches and others who became referees) can be found by clicking here.