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DWU basketball announces plans to recognize Gordie Fosness in January alumni celebration

All Dakota Wesleyan University alumni are invited to the Corn Palace for a basketball doubleheader with the women's team tipping off at 2 p.m. and the men's game getting underway at 3:45 p.m.

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In a February 2021 file photo at the Corn Palace, a spotlight at the Corn Palace shines on the banner of the late Gordie Fosness, who died in December 2020. Fosness spent 22 seasons as DWU's men's basketball coach.
Mitchell Republic file photo
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MITCHELL — Dakota Wesleyan University athletics has announced plans for the inaugural Gordie Fosness Alumni Day event will take place as part of the men's and women's basketball games against Mount Marty University on Sunday, Jan. 15, 2023, at the Corn Palace.

"Alumni Day is always a significant highlight on the athletics schedule to honor the rich history of DWU basketball," DWU Athletic Director Jon Hart said in a news release. "This year's Alumni Day event will be extra special as we honor the legendary playing and coaching career of the late Gordie Fosness by officially retiring his uniform number. We look forward to an action-packed day of quality basketball and fellowship with many alumni and friends in attendance."

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Gordie Fosness (DWU Athletics photo)

All Dakota Wesleyan University alumni are invited to the Corn Palace for a basketball doubleheader with the women's team tipping off at 2 p.m. and the men's game getting underway at 3:45 p.m.

Before the men's game at 3:30 p.m., DWU men's basketball will retire the No. 43 jersey number worn by Gordie Fosness. All basketball alumni in attendance will also be recognized at center court during halftime of the men's game.

Fosness, who died in 2020 at age 85, was a 1957 Dakota Wesleyan graduate who ended his college basketball career as the leading scorer in state history with 1,805 points, which ranks today as the 10th-most points by a DWU men's basketball player. The 6-foot-4 Fosness was drafted in the 10th round of the NBA draft in 1957 by the Minneapolis Lakers but he returned to South Dakota later in the year to coach.

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After four years in high school coaching, Fosness led Tiger men's basketball for 22 years (1961-83), recording the most wins in DWU men's basketball history with 351 and the most conference championships by a DWU coach with 10.

Alumni planning to attend the Jan. 15 games are welcome and are encouraged to visit the TeamMakers Landing in the Corn Palace Armory during the games for food and beverages sponsored by the DWU Alumni office.

Presho native is the winningest coach in Tiger basketball history

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