This week’s brief column highlights a former high school boys’ basketball star who had an outstanding first year in college and a former Minneapolis City Conference coach returning home — well, sort of.
MARCUS MARSHALL was named Missouri Valley Conference Freshman of the Year in March. Marshall averaged 10.8 points per game for the Missouri State University Bears.
While at St. Paul Johnson, the 6-foot-3 guard led the Governors to three consecutive state tournament appearances, winning the class 3A title in 2010, leading them back in 2011, and finishing third in 2012.
Marshall capped off an outstanding senior year by capturing MVP at the Inner City All-Star Classic, earning all-state honors from the Pioneer Press and second-team all-metro from the Star Tribune. He is the second player in school history to be named the top freshman in the Missouri Valley Conference.
LARRY MCKENZIE, the coach who led Minneapolis Henry to four consecutive state championships, has been named the new head coach at Minneapolis North. After serving as an assistant coach when the Patriots earned Class 3A runner-up honors to St. Thomas Academy in 1998, McKenzie took over the following year and led Henry to the ’99 tournament.
The next four seasons were nothing but championships. Behind JOHHNY GILBERT, TONY TRAVIS, GREG PATTON, TERRY PETTIS and LAWRENCE MCKENZIE, just to name a few, the Patriots captured state titles in 2000, ’01, ’02 and ’03. Larry McKenzie coached previously at Holy Angels.
It will be interesting to see how Marshall progresses, as he improved each year he was at Johnson. It will also be interesting to see McKenize leading the Polars, Henry’s arch rival.
Mitchell Palmer McDonald welcomes reader responses to firstname.lastname@example.org.