Thinking Back Thursday--1981 Idaho State A2 Boys Basketball

Listening to the Kellogg Wildcats boys basketball game at the state tournament on KWAL this afternoon, plus listening to songs from the "Queen's Greatest Hits" CD on the way to the theater this evening transported me back in time to the year 1981, my senior year, when the Kellogg Wildcats made it to the state championship game.

Our theme song that year should have been "We Are The Champions".

Instead, the opposing team's pep band played, "Another One Bites the Dust".

But it was a fun ride with this team. I started watching most of these guys our freshman year, when they played at Kellogg Junior High School. I played in the pep band, and so I was always at the games. If our freshman team wasn't undefeated that year, I know we were pretty close.

I think by our freshman year, Shawn Lannen and Don Teller were both at least 6 feet tall, which was a great help. Danny Marek was a great shooter, too. He was the last of a string of Marek boys that were great basketball players at KHS.

And, as these guys progressed through high school, the teams made it to state every year. This run has started when PKR was a senior, and his team made it to state in 1978. I remember what a big deal this was. I was a freshman that year at KJHS, and they piped the game over the loud speakers in the school, and we listened to the game during class, because it was such a big deal.

The Wildcats would make it to state the next three years while I was at KHS. State tourament trips were always fun. I think my sophomore year we were in Boise, then my junior year we were in Nampa. Our senior year, they decided to move the tournament up north, and, if I'm not mistaken, and we played in the Post Falls High School gym.

(If any of my information is incorrect, please feel free to correct this. I know Laurie and Lee would know some better details, if you read this post.)

The Wildcats made it through the tourament, and to the state championship game, the first time since the Wildcats were state champions in the 1960's I believe.

We were playing Madison High School.

It was down to the wire. With just seconds remaining, I believe the game was tied, and Madison shot the ball and won the game.

We were so close. It was heartbreaking.

I still remember how awful I thought it was for the other band to play "Another One Bites the Dust".

Winning second place was a great honor.

But our theme song should have been "We Are The Champions".


GAV said...

Oh my golly... great memories!! What a blast from the past. Thanks!!

Crazy Little said...

Hey SVG...way to conjure up old memories. :-)

You've got everything right except for our Junior year. We made the lovely trip to Pocatello that year. Ranked #1 in the State going into the tournament and ended up being the first ones out. Real bummer.

Coach B. ended up resigning his coaching duties soon after and Coach A. came in from St. Maries the following year to take us back to State in '81. Oh so close...

BTW, you're doing a great job on your blog!!!

John in Tennessee said...

This brings back good memories from my childhood. I was 10 and my family went to that game in Post Falls.

raymond pert said...

This post stirs up ENVY in me, and stirs up wishes that the 69-72 Wildcat teams I played on could have tasted just a drop of success.

*Storms off angrily, pouting at the cruel nature of the world.*


SM said...

I can't believe I didn't read this sooner. I was just a tyke during that championship game at PFHS, but I remember the bitter disappointment vividly. I grew up with the Alexander boys so I experienced his tenure first hand.

Also, your comment about Danny Marek being the last in the string of Marek boys who were great players at KHS. 25 short years later, Casey Marek took the torch for the Marek clan, shooting from anywhere in the gym. Heath Marek was also a force, if he could have remained eligible. But Casey was a great player and brought back memories of his dad, uncles, etc.

Kyle Kenser is now on KHS Bball, which is another connection to the 81 team.

Good stuff!

GO Wildcats!

Anonymous said...

January 11,2009

Hello to all of you. Just to let you know a new Marek boy Trever Marek -(who is Don Mareks son) is a freshman at the KHS and is playing on the C team this year. Maybe we will see some great games again. It was alot of fun reading all of the other comments. I will try to keep posting what Kellogg is doing as far as BBall games.