A Minnesota high school basketball player has issued a public apology for shooting free throws in place of his teammates during a recent game.
The Minneota Vikings, the No. 1-ranked team in Class 1A boys' basketball, defeated MACCRAY 87-83 on Jan. 31, and at some point in the game senior player Thomas Hennen says he intentionally replaced two of his teammates at the free-throw line.
It's not clear if Hennen made the free throws, nor is it clear how the officials and coaching staffs failed to notice the switch as it happened.
Regardless, Minneota School District and the Minnesota State High School League were notified of the illegal move after the fact, and according to the Marshall Independent, the school imposed a two-game suspension on Hennen and a one-game suspension on the two other players who allowed him to take their places.
The Minneota Mascot published Hennen's full apology, part of which is below.
"I whole-heartedly accept the penalty given to me by my administrators.
In the heat of the game, my competitiveness emerged and I failed to think about the repercussions of my actions at that time.
I would like to apologize to those two teammates, as well as to the rest of my team and coaches, the fans, the school, and the community for my actions.
I would also like to apologize to the MACCRAY players, coaches and fans; and also to the Minnesota State High School League.
I know moving forward that I have learned from my inexcusable actions, and that it will never happen again."
Hennen is a star athlete at the small school and he helped lead Minneota all the way to the state championship game last year, where the Vikings lost 71-69 to Russell-Tyler-Ruthton.
Minneota was 18-0 before losing to Yellow Medicine-East, 57-55, on Saturday. All three players missed that game. Two of the players returned for a win over Adrian High School on Monday, and it's expected that Hennen will be back on the court when Minneota faces Lakeview High School on Tuesday night.