2017 M-Club Hall of Fame inductees announced
Morningside will induct former standout athletes Jennifer (Childress) Hazelett, Kyle Ortegren, Brad Schmit, and Don Zeleznak into the M-Club Hall of Fame as part of its Homecoming 2017 festivities on Saturday, Oct. 7.
In addition to the four athletes, Morningside will honor Dale Guilford as M-Club Coach of the Year.
The induction ceremony will take place at the annual M-Club Brunch on Saturday, Oct. 7, at 10 a.m. in the Yockey Family Community Room of the Olsen Student Center, 3609 Peters Avenue. Cost for the brunch is $15 in advance and $20 at the door. Advance reservations can be made by calling (712) 274-5315. Reservation deadline is Friday, Sept. 29.
Hazelett, a 1998 Morningside graduate, is one of only three women’s basketball players in Morningside history to earn first-team All-North Central Conference (NCC) honors twice, doing so as a junior and senior. She graduated as the sixth leading scorer and fourth leading rebounder in Morningside history with 1303 career points and 846 career rebounds. She averaged 12.2 points and 7.9 rebounds per game over her career.
Hazelett grabbed 578 career rebounds in Morningside’s NCC contests to make her the fifth leading rebounder in league history at the time of her graduation.
After starting 10 games as a freshman, Hazelett moved into Morningside’s starting lineup full-time as a sophomore and averaged 10.3 points and a team-high 7.8 rebounds per game. Hazelett averaged a double double as a junior when she topped Morningside with averages of 17.2 points and 10.0 rebounds per game and led the team in field goal accuracy with a shooting rate of 50.7 percent. She had Morningside’s top single-game scoring and rebounding performances of the season with 34 points against Mankato State and 18 rebounds against South Dakota. Hazelett made 15 field goals in a game against St. Cloud State for the top total in the NCC that season. Hazelett also led Morningside in scoring as a senior when she averaged 14.3 points per game to compliment a norm of 8.4 rebounds per contest.
Ortegren, a 2006 graduate, was a standout wide receiver for the Mustangs’ football team and is Morningside’s all-time leader with 219 career pass receptions that went for 2976 yards and 23 touchdowns for an average of 13.6 yards per catch. Ortegren’s 2976 career reception yards was also a school record at the time of his graduation.
He led the Mustangs in pass receptions in 17 consecutive games over the 2002 and 2003 seasons and in 2003 became Morningside’s first-ever first-team NAIA All-American during the Steve Ryan coaching era. He was a second-team NAIA and a third-team Football Gazette All-American in 2004. Ortegren was a first-team All-GPAC performer as a sophomore and junior and received honorable mention All-GPAC recognition following a senior season where a knee injury sidelined him for the majority of the campaign. He had four games with at least 10 pass receptions during his career, including a school-record 16-catch performance for a career-high 188 yards in a 2003 game against Doane.
Ortegren made an immediate impact as a freshman when he topped the Mustangs with 54 catches, 748 reception yards, six touchdown receptions and an average of 13.9 yards per catch and was the team’s top kickoff return specialist with a 23.1-yard average. Ortegren was a first-team NAIA All-American in his 2003 sophomore campaign when he had a team-high 74 receptions and set a school record with 1141 reception yards. He averaged 15.4 yards per catch and had a career and team-high nine touchdown receptions. Ortegren earned second-team NAIA All-America and third-team Football Gazette All-America honors as a junior when he helped lead Morningside to an 8-3 record and its first-ever post-season appearance in the NAIA Championship Series, where he had 11 catches in an opening round loss against the University of Saint Francis. Ortegren finished the 2004 campaign with a career-high 79 receptions that went for 900 yards and seven touchdowns. He averaged 22.1 yards per kickoff return and set a Morningside single-game record with 136 kickoff return yards against Midland Lutheran.
Schmit, a 2006 graduate, is the all-time leading scorer in Morningside men’s basketball history with 1987 career points. Schmit, a four-year starter known for his long range shooting exploits, set a school record with 329 career 3-point field goals. He had a career scoring average of 15.6 points per game, was a two-time NAIA honorable mention All-American and a three-time first-team All-GPAC performer.
Schmit was the Mustangs’ second leading scorer as a freshman when he averaged 11.8 points per game and led the team with 64 3-point field goals. That season he had one of the greatest performances of his Morningside career when he scored 35 points and made a school-record 10 3-point field goals to lead the Mustangs to a 97-95 victory against Dana.
He was Morningside’s leading scorer as a sophomore, junior and senior. Schmit earned first-team All-GPAC honors for the first time as a sophomore when he averaged a career-high 17.5 points per game to help lead the Mustangs to an 18-13 overall record and a share of their first-ever GPAC championship with a 14-4 league mark.
Schmit earned honorable mention All-America honors following his junior and senior campaigns. He led the Mustangs in scoring with a 15.7-point average as a junior and topped the team in both scoring and rebounding as a senior with averages of 17.3 points and 5.6 rebounds per game. Schmit made a school-record 96 3-point field goals as a senior to help lead Morningside to a 28-7 record and an Elite Eight finish at the NAIA Division II National Tournament.
Zeleznak, a 1969 graduate, was the starting quarterback for the Morningside football team from 1966 to 1968. He completed 328 of 689 pass attempts for 3644 yards over his three-year career. Zeleznak’s 3644 career yards passing was a school record that stood for over 15 years before Jim Gibson passed for 6315 yards from 1982-85.
He became Morningside’s starting quarterback in his 1966 sophomore season and passed for 1160 yards, followed by a junior campaign where he threw for 798 yards.
Zeleznak’s greatest season came as a senior when he passed for 1686 yards to set a school record for passing yards in a season. He completed a school-record 159 of 316 pass attempts for 50.3 percent and a career-high 16 touchdowns. Zeleznak was the nation’s eighth leading passer with his 1686 yards. Zeleznak, a first-team All-NCC selection, passed for 1233 yards and 12 touchdowns in conference play to lead the league in passing and also led the NCC with 1252 yards total offense.
The most prolific passing performance of Zeleznak’s career came in his senior season when he completed 30 of 59 pass attempts for 329 yards against the University of South Dakota to set Morningside single-game records in all three categories.
Guilford, a 1969 graduate, was the head football coach at Skyline High School in Idaho Falls, Idaho, from 1986 to 2009. He guided Skyline to three state championships, 12 state playoff appearances, eight conference championships and a record of 127-99 for a .561 winning percentage in 23 seasons as head coach.
Guilford led Skyline to state championships in 1986, 1989 and 1992. The Grizzlies were the state runner-up in 1998 and finished third in 2000.
Aside from his head football coaching duties, Guilford was an English instructor and an assistant coach in track, basketball and baseball at Skyline. He previously taught and coached at Montrose County High School in Colorado and Sioux County High School in Nebraska.