Laurie Kruse, 1987 Lennox High School graduate and Oriole basketball standout, is among the 2016 Jackrabbit Sports Hall of Fame Class at South Dakota State University.
“The induction into the Jackrabbit Sports Hall of Fame is a tremendous honor for me,” said Kruse. “I will be joining former teammates Tara (Tessier) Lansman and Deb (Veldkamp) VanKlei, inducted in 2014 and 2015 respectively. Another former basketball standout, Karla Stevenson, was one of my assistant coaches throughout my college career. She, as well, was inducted into the Jackrabbit Sports Hall of Fame in 2012. It goes, without question, that these amazing athletes were instrumental in my development as a player during my years at SDSU. How exciting to now be able to follow in their footsteps!”
Laurie (Bruns) Kruse holds the distinction of being the only Jackrabbit women’s basketball player to be named North Central Conference Most Valuable Player, earning the award during a stellar 1990-91 season.
“Being chosen as the North Central Conference Most Valuable Player my senior year is a memory I cherish from my college basketball career,” said Kruse.
During that season, Kruse averaged an NCC-best 23.5 points per game in conference games, and her 423 points in 18 games set a league record.
“It was an unbelievable experience to be able to participate in the North Central Conference, one of the premier conferences of the Midwest in its time,” said Kruse. “My fondest memories were made during games played against the University of South Dakota, Augustana, and North Dakota State. The energy that packed the gym continues to be indescribable.”
Kruse finished her senior year with a Jackrabbit single-season scoring record with an average of 22.8 points per game (593 points in 26 games), tallying 30 or more points in a game six times. She completed her career sixth (now 13th) in career scoring at SDSU with 1,370 points, while shooting 51.5 percent from the floor. She added 663 rebounds, 118 steals and 70 blocked shots in 108 career games.
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