Welcome to Harding High School Athletics & Activities

St. Paul, Minnesota

Hall of Stars Inductees - 2003

John (Jack) Ronayne
John was an "Eastsider" - starting at St. John's Catholic Grade School and then attending "The Old" Harding High School. His athletic career started at Margaret Playground, where his midget team captured the city championship. He was a three sport athlete - playing football, basketball and baseball. He played freshman football, moving up to varsity sophomore, junior, and senior years. Harding won the football city championship in his junior and senior years - 1945 and 1946. He was selected to the "All City Team" his senior year, which he capped off by having three interceptions that season. Jack was a varsity player in sophomore, junior and senior years. His specialty was was defense, one of his hi-lights was holding the conference leading scorer to three points! He was an outstanding leader at Harding, Being selected co-captain of the basketball team, one of the captains for the football team and a class officer his junior and senior years. He was also a member of the varsity baseball team three years and was very successful. Upon graduation fro Harding he went to Hamline University where he played football on the varsity team for three years, and was an outstanding end and had a great collegiate career. Graduating from Hamline in 1951, he went to work on the eastside for Hamm's Brewery in personnel, hiring many eastsiders. His work career took him to Grainsville, Florida as a labor relations manager. Jack passed away in 2001, and is survived by this wife Duffy and his four children. 

Don Miller
Don was a three sport athlete at Harding, playing football, hockey, and baseball, earning many honor and awards in each sport. He demonstrated his leadership by being captain of the football team, playing football and baseball for Clyde MacDonald and hockey for John Rossi, and felt that they played a significant role in his development and thanks them. His honor includes being named to the North All State Football Team, All Conference in football and baseball, and capping off his Harding career by receiving the Harding H Blanket award. Academically he also demonstrated skill as he was on the Honor Roll and received a scholarship to Denver University. He found his preparation for college at Harding served him well, and helped him to achieve success in his college career. At Denver University he excelled in football, lettering three years. Don was named All Conference 2 years, earned All American Honors, and was selected to play in the Shrine East - West game. Don earned a degree from Denver and a master's degree from the University of California. After college Don taught and coached in Sacramento, California and Longmont Colorado. Then he coached college football at the University of Louisiana and Bakersfield College in California. Don left teaching and coaching and became a conductor, building homes for several years and wrapping up his work career back in the campus of Bakersfield College in 2001. Don was very successful in his pursuits!

Jim Helgason
Jim attended Harding from 1964 to 1966. He was the senior class president, a member of the National Honors Society, German Club, and H Club. Jim was a three sport athlete and played football, basketball, and baseball. He demonstrated leadership skills as captain of all three teams and athletic skills as he was recognized as Athlete of the Week, All Conference two times in basketball and All Conference his senior year in football and baseball. He was selected as the Harding H Blanket winner and was the recipient of the St. Paul Schools Scholar - Athlete of the year Award. Jim moved on to Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, where he had a very successful college career in academics and athletics. He lettered in football, basketball, and baseball, which is unheard of today. Imagine a college athlete participating in three sports and being successful. He received many awards during his college career that was capped off with the Luther College's Athlete of the Year Award. After college, Jim served in the military and then started a teaching career at Washington Highschool, teaching and coaching from 1971 to 1975. After leaving Washington High School he moved to California's Central Coach teaching and coaching at Carmel High School and continues to have a very successful teaching career. He is married to Lesle Vienna and has two children that are pursuing careers in education out east. Jim's family still resides on the east side, three brothers, a nephew, and two nieces attending Harding. One niece, Kate, is captain of the soccer team. He has a strong family connection here and feels great pride having lived on the East Side, and to having attended and competed for Harding.

Robert (Bob) Van Hoef.
Bob was a three sport athlete that played football, basketball, and tennis. He excelled in basketball and tennis, winning many awards and honors. In basketball he was All Conference, All Metro, and was selected All State his senior year. Bob was an outstanding tennis player. He had to be for family bragging rights. The Van Hoef was a strong tennis family in which all members excelled in tennis and created a very "friendly" family competition. Bob has many successes, all conference in singles, four time district champion, three time regional champion, finishing fifth in the state in 1970, and finishing the year off by being St. Paul's Student Athlete of the Year. After Harding he attended the University of Minnesota, where he played basketball as a freshman and tennis all four years. He lettered in basketball his freshman year and in tennis all four years. Bob made the All Big Ten Team in 1975 and won the Harvey J Ratner Award as the MVP the same year. Bob moved on to the European professional tennis tour after competing a great career at the University of Minnesota. He lives and works in the Western suburbs, but has a strong feeling of for the East Side!

Mark Holmgren
Mark was an outstanding three sport athlete at Harding, playing football, hockey and baseball. Mark was not only a great athlete, but he was a great leader, as he was selected as captain in all three sports. He demonstrated his athletic abilities as he was selected All Conference three times, and was also honorable mention a couple of times. The 1971 football team that he captained went on to play in the Twin City game, and the 1971 - 1972 hockey team won the region four championships and played in the 1972 state tournament. Mark had a great Harding career! After Harding, Mark went onto college, married, started a family and have enjoyed and shared their adventures and growth. for the past twenty two years, sharing with the kids his knowledge and expertise in both sports. One of Mark's great memories at Harding was receiving the H Blanket from his good friend and former Harding great, Ollie Bakken, and then having the opportunity to pass it on to his brother, Paul Holmgren.

Barbara Walfoort
Barb participated in volleyball, basketball, and softball at Harding. She considered volleyball her best sport. The volleyball team won the conference championship all of her four years. They were undefeated conference champions in 1987 and 1989. Harding were region champions in 1987 and 1989 advancing to the state volleyball tournament. Barb was awarded many honors in volleyball during her career at Harding. She was All Conference and All Metro her junior and senior seasons, All State her senior year, and set many records of "kills" and "blocked shots". Her coach Denny Amundson, had these words about Barb, "Barb was a special player in out program with a knack for making the special play." In our first state tournament season, we were losing to Cretin Derham Hall in the semifinals of the region tournament. We lost game one and were behind 12 - 7 in game two when Angie Conklin changed the coaches play and set Barb a front X which she drilled to the floor. Barb went back to serve and we scored seven straight points and wen on to win the match and the region tournament. Barb earned a scholarship to the University of Minnesota and played volleyball 1990 to 1993, and had a fine collegiate career. She majored in Child Psychology and is currently working for the Wilder Foundation as a counselor for children diagnosed with emotional/behavior disorders.

Vickie Estrellado
Vickie participated in four sports, Tennis, Cross Country, Basketball and Track and Field. She was blessed to be on some outstanding teams, in a great era of women's athlete at Harding. She feels her success was partly due to her association with such fine athletes and peers such as Cara Pearson, Shannon and Jodi Loeblein, Rolanda Williams, and many others. She singles our her coach, Willie Taylor, as one who encouraged and challenged her to work hard and improved her skills, thus helping her achieve her success.  Vickie was very popular with her classmates and very successful in her academics. She continues her schooling at Bethel College where she participated on the track and field team for two years and the basketball team for four years. She enjoyed much success with the Bethel basketball team and enjoyed playing for coach Deb Hunter. The Bethel team made it to the Sweet 16 and Elite 8 during her sophomore and senior seasons. After college she has held a variety of coaching positions in the St. Paul Schools including basketball, track, and presently is teaching at the North End Elementary School. She misses the coaching, but continues to give back to the kids of St. Paul with her elementary teaching assignment.

Jodi Massuci
Jodi played volleyball and softball at Harding, and was very successful! The volleyball team dominated in conference and sectional play and went to the state tournament her junior and senior years. The softball team was also very successful, but fell short of going to the state tournament. Jodi earned many honors while at Harding, she was selected to the All Conference teams in both volleyball and softball her junior and senior years. She earned all state honors and was "prep athlete of the week". Jodi had great memories of her four years at Harding, stating she was fortunate enough to play along side great bunch of athletes and coaches, who were as passionate and competitive as she was. The experience of the two state volleyball tournaments, running out into the court in the old Met Center, seeing classmates, teachers, friends, best of all the family cheering her on, was a feeling that Jodi says she will never forget. After Harding, Jodi went on to the University of Minnesota and played softball for one season. She left the University to pursue a career in retailing. She currently works as a store manager and continues to play softball in summer leagues.

Theodore (Ted) Eckman
Ted began his teaching career at Harding in 1964 in the Industrial Arts Department, teaching electricity, drafting, and metal work. Changing curriculum dictated a move from teaching electricity to woodworking, small engines, and auto tune-up. He ended his career at Harding teaching woodworking, developed many outstanding wood workers in his Harding career. He started his coaching career at Harding with coaching in the track program in 1996, becoming an assistant, and coaching track for 20 years with the head track coach, Mike Kissell. They formed a great team developing many outstanding track athletes over the years. The Harding track teams were very successful competing with arch - rivals in the conference and also sending many of the athletes on to the region and states success. You could list many of Harding's former stars that Mike and Ted helped develop that went on to achieve great things and had great success. After leaving Harding, he continued his education and earned a masters degree at the University of Minnesota in Industrial Arts. Upon completion of his advanced degree, he returned to teach at our arch-rival (boo) Johnson High School for six years before retiring in 1997. He new enjoys the good life of hunting, fishing, and working on his hobby farm. Thanks Ted, for many great years of "great" service to Harding and Harding Kids!!!

Fran Quinlan
Fran arrived at Harding High School as a Physical Education teacher in the fall of 1967 and continued his teaching at Harding until 1978. After leaving Harding, he taught one year at Cherokee Elementary and then moved to Highland Park Senior High School where he finished his teaching career. At Harding, he coached boys swimming and diving from 1967 tp 1979. His teams were very competitive and he helped develop many outstanding swimmers and divers. Many of his swimmers and divers won championships in the conference, regions, and moved on to the state tournament. Fran returned to Harding to help coach the boys and girls track teams from 1981 to 1986. He was in charge of the weights, boys and girls shot, and discus program. Many of his athletes had great success and won man medals at the conference and regional levels, and proceeding to do well in the state competition. Fran has not left the scene, he has continued to contribute to the St. Paul Schools by helping coach diving for many years at schools that have needed his expertise and experience. Thanks Fran for many great years of great service to Harding and Harding Kids!