Welcome to Harding High School Athletics & Activities

St. Paul, Minnesota

Bill Dochniak

Graduated from Harding in 1955

Bill was a two sport athlete at Harding High School, participating in football and track. As a running back for the Knights, Bill won All- Conference honors his senior year.

In his senior year on the Track Team, Bill ran the 100 and 220 yard dashes and anchored the 880 yard relay in the City Conference Championship. Bill was also crowned Homecoming King that year.

After graduating from Harding, Bill served in the Army from 1956 until 1959. He and his highschool sweetheart ,Bev Amundson (Class of 1957), were married in 1958 and spent the first of their married years in Nashville, TN. They returned to St.Paul’s hood. Four boys participated in football and baseball or hockey at Harding and one participated at Saint Bernards. Bill’s family has grown to include seven granddaughters , six grandsons, and a great-grandson.

Bill worked for Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad for 44 years, retiring in 1999. Now Bev and Bill enjoy spending time with their family, traveling , and going for weekend jaunts in their motor home. They continue to live on the East Side and have stayed connected with the Harding community by frequenting neighborhood businesses and maintaining high school friendships.

Scott Richards

Graduated from Harding in 1981

Scott Richards has been with the Saint Paul Public School since he started kindergarten at Battle Creek Elementary. When graduating from HArding High in 1981, he was letterman in both football and wrestling. Following graduation, Scott became a Hamline Piper. When Scott graduated from Hamline University , he was recognized by the National Association for sport and Physical Education acknowledge his outstanding work in his field of study. Scoot went on to earn his Master’s Degree in Education from the University of St.Thomas. He continues his relationship with both universities by teaching physical education courses for graduate and undergraduate students.

Following his degree from Hamline, Scott quickly returned to his Saint Paul Public School roots. Starting in 1986, Scott became a teacher and coach. He has taught Physical Education at Battle Creek Elementary for 26 years! During his tenure , he has coached 16 seasons of high school football, 12 seasons of high school wrestling, three seasons of youth wrestling, and six seasons of youth volleyball for his students at Battle Creek. Scott continues to enjoy his time working with the East Side community.

Scott would like everyone to keep in mind:

“ We don’t stop playing because we grow old, we grow old because we stop playing”

Mylai Tenner

Graduated from Harding in 1989

Mylai Tenner was a three-sport student athlete at Harding from 1984-1989. During his senior year, he was captain of the football,basketball, and track teams. Mylai and his family moves to the East Side in the late 1070’s as his mother was an employee of 3M. Mylai was involve in a variety of activities and fondly remembers time at Conway and Hazel Park playgrounds. That is where he truly began to understand and embrace the blue-collar culture of the East Side.

Mylai played with some amazing players during his Harding years. Players he still communicates with today! Mylai believes his induction would not be possible without his coaches and teammates embracement of the ‘little punk kid’ from the Westside of Chicago. A little kid with a big mouth, a lot of energy, and ample GOD given physical attributes. Mylai entered Harding as a 6’2 , 230  pound running back with Mr. Kiemel and the Saturday morning practices with Coach Keenan.

Mylai graduated from Harding in 1989 in the top half of his class and received the coveted H-blanket. He went to Southwest State University where he started as linebacker all four years,but was used in the front seven positions due to his size. Mylai graduated from SSU with a degree in Sports Management and a minor in Business Administration. He went on to the CFL,AFL and semi- pro football teams. He has worked out for former Viking Defensive Coach, Tony Dungy. He has also made stops in collegiate women's’ basketball and with the WNBA’s MN Lynx. Mayai has accomplished a lot of things in life. He is currently an educational consultant in poor , diverse urban areas. He has completed his Master’s in Educational Administration and Principal  and Superintendent licensures. He is currently finishing his PHD in Urban Educational Leadership with a minor in Achievement Gap Closure.

Mylai is honored and humbled to be recognized for the Harding Hall of Fame and to be the first African American male inducted.  He will always feel at home and in debted to the East Side. One day he would like to come back as the Principal of Harding

Sarah Skilling-Defore

Graduated from Harding in 1993

Sarah has been blessed with a wonderful family, great husband, and an amazing daughter( plus, two more on the way). As a result, she doesn’t spend a lot of time looking at the past. When given this opportunity, she looked back with great fondness….

Her career at Harding can be described as stepping stones to her college and current self. It was mark with small victories that made her work harder to achieve more: a game winning basket at the buzzer or catching a fly ball in the outfield while choking on a kind support of family, friends,and faculty not only pushed her harder, but also to be a better person, friend, student, and athlete.

Sarah’s experiences at Harding allowed her to take both sports and academics to the collegiate level. In college, sarath was in the Dean’s List while working hard to be a starting freshman on the softball team( where she was named Athlete of the Month). Life lessons continued to direct her to pursue a career in the telecommunications industry. Sarath is now a technical engineer at a Fortune 100 company. But , most importantly, life lesson guided Sarah to her most important journey; being the best wife and mother she can be. This award is all the people in Sarah’s life who helped her become who she is today: many wonderful teachers, coaches, friends, and of course , her family. Without their kindness, guidance, and support her life wouldn’t be what it is today. Sarah thanks everyone for all that she is and all that she has.

Courtney Adney

Graduated from Harding in 1999

Born in Wisconsin, but a product of the East Side, Courtney Adney began her athletic adventures at Battle Creek Environmental Magnet under gym teacher Scott Richard(also being inducted this evening!!!). At Battle Creek, Courtney set the record which still stands today!

At Harding, Cork (as she is known to those close to her), excelled at all sports. She lettered three times in hockey. In softball, Courtney made the All-Conference team each of the three years she was on the team. She was also named All-Conference three years in soccer, garnered the team’s MVP honors twice, and was named All-State Honorable Mention two years in a row.

Just as dangerous on a pair of skates as in a pair of cleats, ‘the Corkster’ was named All-Conference in hockey four times. The pioneer Press named her ‘ Athlete of the week’ twice, All-State Honorable Mention twice, and was chosen to play for the MN Selects team two times as well. Her teammates voted her MVP as a junior, and Courtney was named Player of the season of the year in her senior season

Cork went on to play both soccer and hockey at St.Kate’s where she continued to win awards, earning her degree in English. Courtney is putting her degree to good use managing a team at Wells Fargo. All of these accolades and accomplishments were eclipsed last year, when she birth to her beautiful daughter , Evelyn

Vicky Knutsen
Coached from 1974-2012

Vicky began coaching at Harding during the fall of 1974. She coached the Harding Aqua-Knights. a synchronized swimming program, while teaching at Mounds Park junior High. In 1978, Vicky began teaching physical education at Harding. She coached girls`s competitive swimming and gymnastics. After having her first daughter, Kari Beaudry(a current reading teacher at Harding), vicky coached the cheerleading squad in competitive cheerleading - including having the first male cheerleaders on the Harding squad.

Vicky returned to coaching in the fall of 1985, becoming Harding`s first female cross country coach. Vicky continued as the head cross country coach until 2012. Her teams won six conference titles, three region titles, and 8th place team finish at State,, and a 3rd place individual finish at State.Vicky was also part of the Harding Badminton legacy. She was first as assistant Harding Badminton coach and later, the head Harding Badminton coach. She was one of three authors who promoted badminton as a sport in Minnesota and had it passed by the Minnesota State High School League.Since retirement, Vicky has continued coaching the St. Paul Stars, a synchronized swimming program sponsored by the st. Paul School District Community Education program. Her swimmers have gone on to compete at major synchronized collegiate programs such as: Ohio State, University of Minnesota, Incarnate World, Wheaton, Walsh, Boston University, and Lindenwood University. Several swimmers have also been named to the United States National and Junior programs. Many more have been in finals at age group nationals United States Nationals, and US Opens.Vicky is the first female coach to be named to the harding Hall of Stars!

1969 Harding Football Team

Coached by Clyde McDonald

The 1969 Football team showed their power by shutting out five of their eight conference opponents. The Knights outscored their opponent  240-30. Their biggest win was a thrilling 15-14 win over arch  rival, Johnson. Harding’s stadium, Bakken Field was named in honor of Ollie Bakken, a junior on this impressive team.

From the 1970 Yearbook:

“ Giving Harding something to be really proud of the gridders ended their fabulous 1969 season with an 8-1 record and the city conference title.

Aid in gaining the title came for five squad members who were named to the All-City Team. They are: Ollie Bakken, and seniors  Bucky Johnson, Steve Buetow , Doug  Boleen, and Terry Robertson. Honorable Mentions to the team also went to seniors  Bruce Peterson, Tom Syfko, Dennis Trooien, and Steve Lange.Completing his twentieth year in coaching football at Harding, Head Coach Clyde McDonald assisted by coaches  Mr. Jack Edling and Mr. Tim Kiemel did a fine job in coaching their team all the way to the Twin City Game against Minneapolis Washburn to complete an exciting season”1969 Team Members:

Ralph Alvarez, Mark Avoles, Donald Bateman,Doug Boleen, Bill Bowlin, Patrick Bresnahan, Thomas Brudvis, Steve Buetow , Dave Dreis, Greg Ellsworth, Greg Erickson. John Erickson, Kurt Finholt, Marty Fischer, Craig Gooch, Ronald Harmon, Mike Hoffman, Gerald Hohman, Cort Jerome, Brian Johnson, Michael Johnson, Dick Kielsa, Larry Lambert, Steve Lange, Tom Martin, Mike McDonald, Stephen McGarthwaite, Mike Mueller, Bruce Peterson, Curt Peterson, Robert Peterson, Dick Rivet, Terry Robertson, Kevin Rowan, Gary Schabert, Bob Snow, Alfred Steinke, Daniel Sundmark, Tom Syfko, Scott Tenner, Steven Thayer, Michael Thielen, Michael Tobritzhofer, Dennis Troonien, Steve Tweet, Robert Van Hoef, David Waska, Ward  Wieman, Dave Yauch, and Mike Zitzer.