Husky leaders, supporters honored by conference

Saturday, September 27, 2008


Twelve St. Cloud State coaches, athletic administrators and staff – eight of them alumni – were among the 66 people honored with the North Central Conference (NCC) Legacy Award in June.

The NCC Legacy Award was created in the league’s final year to honor personnel who achieved a long-term and successful record of service to the conference. St. Cloud State honorees were:

Anne Abicht ’06 Master’s – St. Cloud State Athletic Media Relations director since January 1985. Served as women’s sports information director at North Dakota State University 1981-85 and as the women’s sports publicist for the NCC.

Julie Alexander – Joined the St. Cloud State sports medicine staff in 1989 and became head athletic trainer in 1999. Has overseen the growth of the sports medicine staff to include four full-time staff members and graduate and student assistants.

Jerry Anderson ’94 – Has been the Husky men’s tennis coach for 11 seasons and the women’s for three. The men’s team has won nine NCC championships, including the last seven straight titles. Anderson played for the Huskies from 1982-84.

Sue Becker – Began her association with the NCC as head women’s softball coach at St. Cloud State in 1985, compiling a 241-162 overall record and two National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) playoff appearances. Served as the St. Cloud State compliance officer from 1997 until her appointment as associate athletic director in 2005.

Tracy Dill ’87 Master’s – Joined the St. Cloud State athletics staff as an assistant football coach in 1985 and became head men’s track and field coach in 1988. In 1995 became the head men’s and women’s track and field coach. Named associate athletic director for marketing, promotions and fundraising in 1999.

Bill Hudson ’90 M.B.A. – Faculty athletic representative to the NCC, 2005-06 NCC chair, member of the steering committee for the Division II Faculty Athletic Representative Institute in 2004-05, and Faculty Athletic Representative Association Division II board member 2003-05 and vice-president 2005-06.

Morris Kurtz - Joined St. Cloud State as men’s athletic director in 1984 and became the director of athletics for the combined men’s and women’s department in 1996. Has overseen an enhanced fundraising initiative and growth of the program to 23 sports.

Judi Larkin ’85 – In eight seasons as the head men’s and women’s golf coach, has led the men’s team to NCC championships in 2004, 2005 and 2007. Named NCC Coach of the Year all three years. Both the men’s and women’s teams participated in the 2004 NCAA Division II Golf Championships and the men made a return appearance in 2006.

Denny Lorsung ’71 – Compiled a 546-563-4 record in 29 seasons as head baseball coach at St. Cloud State. The Huskies won two NCC North Division titles and the 1991 NCC championship. He was twice named the NCC Coach of the Year. Played for the Huskies in 1969 and 1970 and was an assistant coach before taking over as head coach.

Kevin Schlagel ’77 ’82 – Began his association with St. Cloud State men’s basketball as a player in 1972. From 1980-97 was assistant coach to the Huskies, during which time St. Cloud State won three NCC titles. During his time as head coach, which began in 1997, the Huskies have won one NCC title and two NCC Wells Fargo Finals Championships. Has recorded a 215-103 won/loss record in 11 seasons.

Lori Ulferts – Compiled a 219-178 won/loss record in 14 seasons as the head women’s basketball coach. She led the Huskies to back-to-back NCAA Division II Elite Eight Championships in 2005 and 2006, winning the North Central Region Tournament both seasons. Advanced to the semifinals of the 2006 national tournament. Coached NCAA Division II Player of the Year Erika Quigley.

Paula U’Ren ’97 Master’s – Has had a memorable career in the NCC, first as a three-time All-NCC softball player at Augustana College in 1993-95. Compiled a 426-197 won/loss record since joining St. Cloud State as head softball coach in 1997. The Huskies have won three NCC titles and finished third at the 2004 NCAA Division II National Championship.

Additional Husky supporters recognized at the NCC celebration in June were:

Steve Hammer ’70 and Diane and Carl Schmitt received NCC Volunteer of the Year Awards. Hammer has served as Husky football and men’s basketball public address announcer for more than 20 years, emcees the annual Men’s Basketball Banquet, was president of the Husky Boosters and was a Husky Hoopsters board member. The Schmitts have been the main basketball statisticians for Husky men’s and women’s basketball for 10 years. Carl is Computer Store coordinator and Diane is HuskyNet accounts coordinator in Technology Support Services, both at St. Cloud State.

Art Grachek ’62 received an NCC Honor Award, the highest award in the conference, for his efforts in heightening the integrity of the conference. He was the St. Cloud State institutional representative to the conference from 1987-2001, and served as Faculty Athletic Representative Institute president and executive committee member. Grachek was a professor in the St. Cloud State Department of Communication Studies from 1971-2003.

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