Before the Tornado football team kicked-off its Sept. 16 game against Osseo at Goodrich Field, Anoka High School formally admitted five individuals into its Hall of Fame.
After a meet-and-greet staged at the 201 Tavern in downtown Anoka, inductees Jenny (Hennen) Forrest, Steve Hoag and Carl Youngquist were escorted to Goodrich Field along with Scott Johnson (representing his dad, inductee Bruce Johnson who was unable to attend) and inductee Dave Nelson’s dad Stan Nelson and sister Cheryl King (representing the Hall of Famer who was away coaching the Minnetonka football team).
Nelson, Hoag, Forrest, Youngquist and Johnson proudly wore Tornado colors and excelled on the field, on the track, in the pool, on the course, on the court and on the sideline.
Jenny (Hennen) Forrest, class of 1996
Jenny (Hennen) Forrest is one of the most accomplished athletes in Anoka High School history. She recorded six state swimming championships, was awarded high school All-American honors eight times and never lost a race during her sophomore, junior or senior year at Anoka.
The 1996 graduate received a full scholarship to the University of Minnesota for swimming. In 1999 and 2000, she swam on the Big 10 championship team and was the 1999 Big 10 champion in the 200 meter butterfly. She received college All-American honors twice, was a six-time college All-American Honorable Mention recipient and held seven women’s varsity school records at the University.
Forrest qualified for the U.S. Olympic trials in 2000, competing in the 100 butterfly, the 200 butterfly (in which she placed 19th), the 50 freestyle and the 100 freestyle.
Steve Hoag, class of 1965
Steve Hoag earned six letters at Anoka High School (three in track and three in cross country) and he served as captain of both teams his senior year, 1965. In cross country, he became the team’s top runner his sophomore and junior years, and during his senior year, he set six course records, won the Suburban Conference Championship, and placed sixth in the state meet.
In track, Hoag was the team’s top miler as a sophomore and broke the Anoka High School mile record as a junior. As a senior, he placed second in the state indoor championships and won the Anoka Invitational for the one mile, setting a meet record. He also won the Suburban Conference mile, setting the record at 4:24.7.
Hoag was recruited to run for the University of Minnesota and was one of the team’s top runners. He was named Most Valuable Runner and Fred Watson Award winner in 1967 and 1968.
Hoag helped Minnesota win its first Big Ten track championship in years and a month later, he made All American in the 10,000 meter run. He also qualified for the USA Olympic track team trials at that distance and placed highly enough in the semifinals to qualify for the finals.
Hoag’s senior year at the University culminated in a fourth place team finish in the NCAA and a first place finish in the Big Ten two mile race in track.
After graduating from college, Hoag joined the Twin Cities Track Club, competing for them from 1970 to 1984 and setting records in the 10k, 15k, 25k and marathon. He won the national 25k race in 1975. He placed sixth in the 1974 Boston Marathon and second in the 1975 Boston with a time of 2:11:54 – the fourth fastest Boston Marathon ever run.
Hoag qualified for the 1976 U.S. Olympic Marathon trials, but was unable to finish due to injury. He was named to the 2000 Minnesota Track and Field Hall of Fame.
Hoag owned and operated Marathon Sports in Minneapolis for 30 years. Currently he coaches track and cross country at Minnetonka High School.
Bruce Johnson, retired coach
Affectionately known as “Beef,” Bruce Johnson grew up in Cokato, Minnesota, where he lettered in basketball, baseball, track and field, and football. After graduation, Johnson attended Macalester College where he was a four-year letter-winner in track and field, was voted captain his senior year, and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in teaching.
Johnson coached at Albert Lea High School from 1958 to 1964 and then came to Anoka to coach cross country and track and field. Coaching for 29 seasons, he has the third-longest tenure of any coach at Anoka High School.
Johnson was voted Minnesota Cross Country Coach of the Year in 1975 and was later inducted into the Minnesota Cross Country Coaches’ Hall of Fame.
Boys and girls cross country teams under Johnson’s direction won acclaim at state, region, district and conference levels and produced individual state champions as well.
Johnson’s Tornado boys track and field teams also won titles at the region, district and state levels and qualified for the True Team State meet three times between 1987 and 1993.
Many of Johnson’s Tornadoes went on to compete at the collegiate and high amateur levels; three became All Americans and one is an American record holder.
Dave Nelson, class of 1974
A 1974 graduate of Anoka High School, Dave Nelson lettered in football and baseball. After graduation, he attended the University of Minnesota-Duluth where he was a four-year letter-winner in baseball and football and was a captain in both sports his senior year. After his 1978 graduation from UMD, Nelson attended St. Cloud State University and earned his master’s degree in physical education.
He started his teaching career at Blaine High School where he also served as assistant baseball and football coach before becoming the head football coach in 1984. Nelson’s Bengals won 152 games and lost only 50, winning 10 conference and eight section titles and winning the state championship in 1988.
In the fall of 2002, Nelson accepted a head coaching and physical education position at Minnetonka High School. His Minnetonka teams have won three conference titles and the 2004 state championship.
Nelson has won numerous conference and section Coach of the Year honors, he was named large school Coach of the Year in 1988 and 2004 and was named Minnesota State Coach of the Year in 2004.
In 2000 Nelson was inducted into the UMD Hall of Fame. He received the Minnesota Football Coaches Association Power of Influence Award in 2009, the Semper Fidelis Leadership Award in 2012, and the Tom Mahoney Man of the Year Award in 2013.
Nelson initiated the MFCA Recruiting Fair, serves as a member of the MFCA’s clinic and executive committees and served as president of the MFCA in 2002. He also serves on the West Metro
Fellowship of Christian Athletes board.
Carl Youngquist, class of 1960
Carl Youngquist lettered two years in Tornado basketball and three years in golf, playing in the state golf tournament as a sophomore and as a senior.
After his 1960 Anoka High School graduation, Youngquist served four years on Anoka City Council and six years on the Anoka Park Board and the Anoka Economic Development Committee. He was a board member for the Anoka Area Chamber of Commerce and is past president of the Anoka Men’s Golf Club. Today he continues as chairman of the Anoka Housing and Redevelopment Authority.
Youngquist also serves as chairman of the Anoka Alumni Lettermen’s Club. Under his leadership the organization has tripled in size. Youngquist also led the board to add new programs and establish the Billy Bye Memorial Activity Fund to support individual students’ needs.
Organizers of the 2016 Anoka High School Hall of Fame induction event expressed gratitude to the following businesses and individuals for their sponsorship and assistance: Bill Boyum of 201 Tavern, Jim Lundeen of Killebrew Root Beer, David Bank Studios, Chick-fil-A, Lee and Karen Carlson of Main Motor Chevrolet for donating and driving five vehicles, Dave Way, and Mike Clark.