Photos: 40-Years-Later Celebration of Rolfe’s Road to the 1971 Girls’ State Basketball Tournament (Part III)


Rolfe, Iowa's, 1970-71 girls' basketball state tournament team. (Click on photo to enlarge.)

Referring to Part I and Part II will help explain this post. All three posts include photos from the April 16, 2011, celebration of Rolfe, Iowa’s, road to the 1971 girls’ state basketball tournament.

For links to video and a radio broadcast of Rolfe girls’ 6-on-6 basketball from the early 1970s, click here. At that link you’ll also find links to general information about the history of Rolfe girls’ basketball.

Clicking on these photos will enlarge them.

Dave Spaulding (Rolfe faculty from 1966 to 1983) was kind enough to send to me this photo from the April 16th celebration. I was available for the photo because I opted out of the scrimmage much sooner than the rest of the women scrimmaging that day. While the red and gold uniform is of a different (but similar) style than the uniforms we wore in 1971, in this photo I am wearing a vintage Rolfe uniform, and back then I did wear #53.


Kneeling L to R: Laurie Brinkman Jensen (RHS '71), Wendy Bennett Panbecker (RHS '87), daughter of Gus (RHS '74) and Nancy Brinkman. Middle Row: Louise Gunderson Shimon (RHS '73), Sue Feldman Reigelsberger, Karen Brinkman Vinson (RHS '72), Meg Vinson, Lynn Neugent Debel (RHS '74), Abby Hohensee (Pocahontas '07), daughter of Kyle (RHS '81) and Candace Brinkman. Back row: Julie Brinkman Mintz (RHS '74), Jolene Duitscher (red shirt), Joanne Brinkman (white shirt), Carole Dean Hohensee (Pocahontas '77), Tammy Pederson Shimon (RHS '83), Pam Radig, Lori Pedersen (currently from Rolfe), Brenda Reis (currently from Rolfe), Carol Hudson Hallman (Pocahontas '72).


This is Rolfe's victory bell. Ok, so the Pocahontas Area superintendent says it is technically the property of the Pocahontas Area school district. But, in our hearts we know it belongs to Rolfe. (The district has offered it to Rolfe on a long-term loan basis.) Since sometime around the closing of the Rolfe school as an attendance center, the bell had resided outside the Pocahontas school building. However, there was a faction using its creative juices to figure out a way to get the bell back to Rolfe. The way I heard it was that the superintendent listened to reason, checked with the powers that be, and offered the bell on the loan basis. The bell returned to Rolfe just two or three days before our April 16th celebration. (Wasn't it nice for some of those Rolfe people, and even some that no longer are from Rolfe, to want so badly to get that bell returned in time for April 16th?! Their desire and having the bell present added to the spice of the event.)


Pictured are the eight attending 1971 state tournament teammates with Rolfe's (loaned) victory bell. The bell had been painted white by the Pocahontas Area district. There is also lettering on it (something to have to do with PAC). In his excitement due to the bell being returned and ready for April 16th, Greg Kaiser doctored it up to once again become ROLFE'S (again...loaned) victory bell. The crepe paper on the bell was purchased by Greg at Calligan's Sundries. This crepe paper was from Greg's last two rolls, the same rolls that Greg used for the 1989 homecoming parade, with was the Rolfe district's last homecoming parade before it (the Rolfe district) was absorbed by Pocahontas Area. L to R: Carol Wiegert Franken (RHS '72), Karen Brinkman Vinson (RHS '72), Lynn Neugent Debel (RHS '74), Louise Gunderson Shimon (RHS '73), Julie Brinkman Mintz (RHS '74), Linda Pedersen Tutt (RHS '73), Laurie Brinkman Jensen (red shirt, RHS '71), Jean Brinkman Longnecker (striped sweater, RHS '73).


John Young (RHS '51) started out as an official for junior high games. Then Al Gilbertson (high school faculty member and also athletic director) talked John into going on the road with Al to officiate. At the April 16th celebration, John spoke of his officiating experiences, including about sixty rule differences between girls' and boys' basketball.


L to R: Karen Brinkman Vinson, John Young, Laurie Brinkman Jensen. Laurie is illustrating how, during jump ball situations, to get the tip she would hold down the arm of the opposing team's jumper.

The evening program was the last officially scheduled component of the celebration. Afterward, many of us ended up at Wes’ Place in Rolfe for more togetherness and to enjoy the music provided by Al Sroufe… and, for closure of such a memorable day. Not closure on relationships, though.

* * * * * * * *

P.S. Those of us from the 1971 basketball team are so very thankful for the willingness and hard work from RAM and RBI and other community members who helped make this celebration possible. Thank you.

(Click here to go to Louise Gunderson Shimon’s blog’s home page.)


One Response to “Photos: 40-Years-Later Celebration of Rolfe’s Road to the 1971 Girls’ State Basketball Tournament (Part III)”

  1. Peg Says:

    WONDERFUL photos! WONDERFUL memories–both from 40 years ago and from this extremely special weekend!

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