A whole new class: Blackduck High School inducts new members to Hall of Fame

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Six distinguished Blackduck High School alumni were inducted into the Hall of Fame during the home basketball double-header Friday, Feb. 2.

A banquet in their honor preceded the event at Hillcrest Supper Club, where the inductees were honored, along with their families, and was attended by members of the Blackduck Schools’ administration, activities, boosters, and the Hall of Fame Committee. The inductees were given the opportunity to speak to the group and to share stories of their lives now and their Blackduck memories.

A section of the gymnasium was reserved for the VIP seating, and the new members were inducted between the girls’ and boys’ basketball games in front of a large crowd of excited supporters -- who paid homage to the contributions of the past that so distinguishes these six individuals and brought them to the attention of the Hall of Fame Committee.

Robert “Bud” Anderson, class of 1953, was the first inductee; a four-sport athlete who performed notably in football, basketball, baseball and track.

Gary Baltes, a 1968 BHS graduate was unable to be present and was represented by his son, Matthew. Gary excelled in football, basketball, and baseball and was the first 1,000-point score placer in BHS basketball history. His induction promoted the new and top spot on the distinguished 1,000-point honoree board that adorns the north wall of the high school gymnasium.  

Brad Toft, class of 1984, was a three-sport athlete, and who led his teams to undefeated seasons his senior year in football, basketball and baseball.

Leonard “Shorty” Feriancek, was the only 2018 inductee to be honored posthumously, having passed away in 2017. Shorty was a four-sport athlete who graduated in 1948 from Blackduck High School, excelling in school sports as well as in town and Legion baseball. His plaque was accepted by his son, Mark Feriancek.

Teresa Rockensock-Hawkinson graduated in 1997, and was a stand-out player in volleyball, basketball and softball who was the first BHS softball player to be selected to the All-State Team -- as well as to the Academic All-State Team.  

The final inductee was Joe Gross, a 1980 BHS graduate whose football and wrestling stats drew gasps from the crowd: rushing for more than 100 yards in every game of his senior year; leading his team to the state quarterfinals and was voted the MVP of the state football tournament his senior year, as well as taking fourth place in the state in wrestling in his junior year and winning a state championship his senior year.

Superintendent and BHS Principal Mark Lundin, introduced each inductee and shared their impressive statistics with the crowd, while Athletics and Activities Director Ryan Grow presented the plaques to each new member. On hand to congratulate with handshakes and hugs were Hall of Fame Committee member Dwight Kalvig; BHS Booster Chairman Heather Forseen; and School Board Vice-Chair and Hall of Fame Committee Member Grant Mistic. The plaques honoring the 2018 class of Hall of Fame inductees will now join those of the 2017 class in a place of honor in the hallowed halls of the high school that will never forget their contributions to the excellence of Blackduck High School athletics and academics.