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Wagner's Koupal, 1985 Kernel boys among Hall of Fame honorees

SIOUX FALLS — The South Dakota High School Basketball Hall of Fame will have 17 new members with the fifth class to be inducted on March 29, it was announced Tuesday.

The 1985 Mitchell boys’ basketball team which won a state title under coach Gary Munsen is being recognized as a team of excellence and is the first Kernel team to receive this honor.

“The special thing about those kids was how well they played together,” Munsen said about the undefeated team. “They were so coachable and fun to be around.”

The 1985 Kernels were the second straight to win a state title for Mitchell. Under Munsen, the team was 23-0 and had three players named to the all-state team — Bart Friedrick, Chad Andersen and Tim Byrd. The team had seven players that went on to play college basketball or football, including current Mitchell girls’ coach Wes Morgan, who was a sophomore on the team.

“To go undefeated at any level it is really hard,” Munsen added.

From the 1985 team, Friedrick is also among the individuals being honored in this year’s class. He was a two-time state champion with Mitchell in 1984 and 1985. In his final two seasons with the Kernels, the team was 45-1 and posted a 40-game win streak.

Friedrick was also a co-Mr. Basketball in his final year of high school and was named to the all-state team his sophomore, junior and senior seasons.

“He was always willing to put in the work and he developed one of the sweetest hook shots,” Munsen said of the 6-foot-9 Friedrick. “He certainly deserves this.”

Mandy Koupal of Wagner is also among the honorees. The former University of South Dakota standout is now an assistant coach with the Colorado State University women’s basketball team.

During her playing career with USD, Koupal was a two-time national player of the year and finished as the Coyotes all-time leader in scoring with 2,142. As a coach at Watertown High School, Koupal led the Arrows to the 2007 state title.

Other area honorees include Colleen Moran of Stickney, Richard “Milt” Authier of Woonsocket, Gerhardt Buenning of Parkston and Julie (Harmacek) Bridge of Avon.

The 17 new members will join the 65 already honored.

The induction banquet will be held at 2 p.m. March 29 at the Ramkota Exhibit Hall and is expected to host several of the inductees and is open to the public. 

Ticket information is expected to be announced soon for the event.