PREP BASKETBALL

ECW's Trgovich, Stoddard headed to Indiana HOF

2010-11-27T22:00:00Z 2010-11-29T02:34:16Z ECW's Trgovich, Stoddard headed to Indiana HOFBy Al Hamnik al.hamnik@nwi.com, (219) 933-4154 nwitimes.com
November 27, 2010 10:00 pm  • 

It was certain to happen, like the changing of seasons.

The path to Indiana's Basketball Hall of Fame continues to be traveled by members of E.C. Washington's unbeaten 1971 state champions.

Ulysses "Junior" Bridgeman got the call in 2008. Coach John Molodet had preceded him in 1995.

The line continued to move forward Saturday as Pete Trgovich and Tim Stoddard were among 14 individuals named to the Hall's 2011 induction class.

The '71 Senators will also be inducted as a team, only the fifth unbeaten state champion so honored.

"Hey, you're not gonna find another ballclub like that. All five (starters) in double figures and going Division I," Molodet said. "It's unreal and the people who don't believe it are just jealous."

The Senators finished 29-0, averaged 91 points a game, and shattered the century mark eight times. Their margin of victory was 29 points despite the starters seldom playing beyond the third quarter.

Bridgeman, Trgovich and Stoddard were joined by Darnell Adell and Ruben Bailey on the starting unit.

"These kids deserve everything they got comin' because I think they're that good," Molodet said.

Bridgeman starred at Louisville, Stoddard at North Carolina State and Trgovich at UCLA, where he was part of the Bruins' 1973 and '74 national championship teams.

"I really didn't want to go in as an individual without the team," Trgovich said. "It was just such an exciting time. That one year affected the rest of my life in a positive way.

"Without that team, I wouldn't have been able to go to UCLA. Without that team, I wouldn't have been able to play for John Wooden. Without that team, I wouldn't have been part of the dynasty."

Trgovich coached basketball at Andrean, E.C. Central and Indiana University Northwest. His Central squad won the 4A state title in 2007.

Stoddard played several seasons of major league ball and is now the Northwestern pitching coach.

"Obviously, this is an honor," Trgovich said. "But it doesn't compare to winning the state championship as a player. That was the ultimate accomplishment for me.

"I'm just so lucky. I've got a great family. I've got two great kids. My parents are healthy. All my siblings live in the area. Basketball has been so good to me."

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