WIAA State Baseball Tournament Preview


THE TOURNAMENT:  The 71st Annual Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association Spring Baseball State Tournament will take place Tuesday-Thursday, June 12-14, at Neuroscience Group Field at Fox Cities Stadium in Grand Chute, Wis. Ticket prices for the tourney are $8 per session and $14 for an all-day admission ticket. Tickets are available at the stadium.

TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE AND PAIRINGS:  The State Spring Baseball Tournament features four divisions. The single elimination tournament includes eight teams in Division 1 and four each in Divisions 2, 3 and 4. The second game of each session will follow the first game.

Tuesday, June 12

Division 1 Quarterfinals - 8 a.m.

Game 1 - Eau Claire North (21-3) vs. Waunakee (18-6) - Broadcast on iHeartRadio

Game 2 - Green Bay Preble (20-3) vs. Kimberly (18-7)*

Division 1 Quarterfinals - 1 p.m.

Game 3 - Arrowhead (23-3) vs. Burlington (20-7)

Game 4 - Janesville Craig (22-5) vs. Milwaukee King (14-9)*

Division 1 Semifinals - 6 p.m.

Game 5 - Winner of Game #1 vs. Winner of Game #2

Game 6 - Winner of Game #3 vs. Winner of Game #4*

Wednesday, June 13

Division 4 Semifinals - 8 a.m.

Game 1 -  Athens (19-2) vs. Ithaca (17-2)

Game 2 -  Thorp (13-10) vs. Johnson Creek (17-8)*

Division 3 Semifinals - 1 p.m.

Game 1 - St. Mary Catholic (17-2) vs. Mineral Point (18-4)

Game 2 - Webster (25-3) vs. Kenosha St. Joseph (20-5)*

Division 2 Semifinals - 6 p.m.

Game 1 - Mosinee (15-5) vs. Jefferson (18-9)

Game 2 - Ellsworth (16-6) vs. Waupun (23-2)*

Thursday, June 14

Division 4 Final -  9:05 a.m.

Game 3 - Winner of Game #1 vs. Winner of Game #2

Division 3 Final -  12:05 p.m.

Game 3 - Winner of Game #1 vs. Winner of Game #2

Division 2 Final -  3:05 p.m.

Game 3 - Winner of Game #1 vs. Winner of Game #2

Division 1 Final - 6:05 p.m.

Game 7 - Winner of Game #5 vs. Winner of Game #6

* Begins approximately 35 min. following game 1 of session.

PRE-FINALS LIVE ON NFHS NETWORK:  The Division 1 quarterfinals and the semifinals of all four divisions of the WIAA State Spring Baseball Tournament will be streamed live on the WIAA.TV portal of the NFHS Network on a subscription basis. To purchase a subscription to the live programming, log-on to www.nfhsnetwork.com and click on the image in the middle of the screen to begin ordering your subscription.

FINALS AIRED LIVE ON FS WISCONSIN:  Watch the WIAA State Spring Baseball Championship finals of all Divisions on FS Wisconsin. Check local cable listings for the channel in your area.  

TEAM TOURNAMENT HISTORY:  The WIAA has been sponsoring the State Spring Baseball Tournament since 1948. Sun Prairie has won the most State championships with eight, followed by Appleton West with seven, and then Catholic Central and Nekoosa with five. La Crosse Central has appeared in the most State Tournaments with 18. Milwaukee Bradley and Stevens Point have reached State 15 times; Appleton West, Janesville Craig, Oconomowoc and Sun Prairie have appeared in 14; and Eau Claire North and Middleton with 13. Bay Port, Eau Claire Memorial, Fond du Lac and Kimberly are next with 12 State appearances. 

LAST YEAR:  Kimberly won the Division 1 championship with a 4-2 victory over Sun Prairie in the title game. West Salem captured the Division 2 title with a 8-6 win over Waupun in the championship final. Aquinas shut out  Laconia 10-0 to win the Division 3 championship, and Athens blanked Independence/Gilmanton 2-0 in the Division 4 championship game.

THE DIVISION 1 FIELD:  Defending champion Kimberly will appear in the State Tournament for the fifth year in a row and for the 12th time overall. The Papermakers have now won three State titles, winning the  Division 1 titles in 2007 and 2017, and the Class B championship in 1989. They have finished runner-up five times, including 1988, 1993, 2008, 2014 and 2015. The Papermakers finished second to Hortonville in the Fox Valley Association standings this spring, and they are the winners of the Appleton East Sectional following a 9-4 win over West De Pere in the final. Janesville Craig is making its third appearance in the last four seasons and its 14th overall. The Cougars have won four State titles. They were the back-to-back Class A champions in 1983-84 and added a Division 1 championship in 1998 and again in 2015. They also finished runner-up in 1999 and 2001. The Cougars were 7-5 victors over city rival Janesville Parker in the sectional final played in Janesville. They placed third in the Big Eight Conference this season. Eau Claire North is making its third consecutive appearance in the State Tournament and its 13th experience overall. The Huskies won the State title in 2011 and  have finished runner-up three times, in 1981, 2002 and 2005. They defeated Stevens Point 5-2 to win the final of the Eau Claire Sectional to earn another berth in the tournament field. The Huskies are the champions in the Big Rivers Conference this season.  Waunakee advances to the State tournament for the second year in a row and for the 10th time overall. The Warriors’ furthest advance in the tournament has been to the semifinals on a number of occasions and most recently in 2010. They finished tied for first place with Beaver Dam in the North Division of the Badger Conference this season, and they trounced DeForest 12-1 in five innings in the sectional final played at Middleton. Burlington is making its fifth appearance in the State Tournament overall and its third straight. The Demons’ won the championship in their only advance to the championship final in 2016. They are the champions of the Southern Lakes Conference this spring, and they doubled-up Kenosha Tremper 6-3 to win the sectional final hosted at Tremper. Milwaukee King is back in the State tournament for the first time since 2003 and for the fifth time in the program’s history. The Generals furthest advance in the tournament has been to the semifinals in 1998, 1999 and 2003. This season, they notched a 5-4 win over Wisconsin Lutheran in the sectional final played at Wisconsin Lutheran to earn their first trip to State in 15 years. The Generals are the champions of the Gold Division of the Milwaukee City Conference. Arrowhead returns for its third consecutive appearance in the State spring tournament and the fourth appearance overall. The Warhawks finished runner-up in their only appearance in the championship game in 2016. In addition, the Warhawks made seven appearances in the State Summer Baseball Tournament between 1973 and 2009, winning State titles in 1979 and 2009. The Warhawks recorded runner-up finishes in 1973, 1975 and 2006. They finished the season atop the Classic 8 Conference standings this season. They beat perennial power Sun Prairie 8-3 to win the Oconomowoc Sectional.  Green Bay Preble is back in the final field of eight for the third year in a row and for the fourth time overall. The Hornets’ fell in the quarterfinal round in 2002 and again last season, and in the semifinals in 2016. They advance to State this season through the Bay Port Sectional following a 12-4 triumph over Antigo in the final. They tied De Pere for the championship of the Fox River Classic Conference this season. 

THE DIVISION 2 FIELD:  Last year’s runner-up Waupun advances to the State Tournament for the second season in a row and for the eighth time overall. The Warriors made three consecutive appearances from 2006-08 and won their only State title in 2007. They are the champions of the East Central Conference this season and earned their berth in the State field with a 1-0 shutout over Catholic Memorial in the sectional final played at Ripon. Mosinee is back in the State Tournament for the second straight season. It will be the Indians’ fifth overall appearance. Their first two experiences came back-to-back in 1948 and 1949 when there was only one classification. They were ousted from title contention in the quarterfinals in those two appearances and in 1991 and last year. They placed second behind Antigo in the Great Northern Conference this spring. The Indians slipped past Fox Valley Lutheran 7-6 in eight innings in the Chilton Sectional final. Jefferson is returning to the tournament for the first time since 2014 when the Eagles won their lone State title. They are making their sixth State appearance overall. The Eagles’ also advanced to the championship final in 1994, resulting in a runner-up finish. Their return to the State semifinals came virtue of a convincing 11-1  win over Edgerton in the Brodhead Sectional final. They are the co-champions of the Rock Valley Conference with Turner this season. Ellsworth has qualified for the third time and for the first time since the second of back-to-back appearances in 2012 and 2013. The Panthers finished runner-up in their inaugural appearance in 2012 and lost in the semifinals the year following. This year’s journey to State culminated with 4-3 victory over Wisconsin Dells in the Viroqua Sectional final. The Panthers tied for second place in the Middle Border Conference this spring. 

THE DIVISION 3 FIELD:  St. Mary Catholic returns to State for the sixth time and for second time in the past three seasons. The Zephyrs won the championship in 2016, and they made three straight appearances from 2001-03, which produced a runner-up finish in 2003. They beat Marathon 6-2 in the final of the sectional hosted by the Zephyrs to advance to the State semifinals. They are the champions of the Eastern Wisconsin Conference this season. Kenosha St. Joseph has qualified for the final four for the fifth time and for the first time since 2009. The Lancers’ four previous appearance came during a span of five years from 2005-09, which resulted in back-to-back championships in 2005-06 and another in 2009. They had a number of championships as a former member of WISAA, winning titles in 1965, 1970, 1977 and 1988. This season, theLancers finished second in the Metro Conference behind Martin Luther, and they advanced through the Markesan Sectional with a five-inning, 13-1 drubbing of Laconia in the final. Webster moves up one division after qualifying for the State tournament for the first time last season in Division 4. The Tigers’ initial appearance resulted in a loss in their semifinal match-up. This season, they edged Elk Mound 2-1 in the Chippewa Falls Sectional final to earn their return to State. They are the champions of the West Division of the Lakeland Conference this season. It is the first time in program history that Mineral Point will experience the State tournament. The celebration of the Pointers’ inaugural appearance began following an 8-2 win over Prairie du Chien in the Aquinas Sectional final. They finished runner-up to Fennimore in the Southwest Athletic League this spring.

THE DIVISION 4 FIELD:  Last year’s champion Athens is back to defend the title in its third overall trip to State. The first time the Fighting Bluejays appeared in the State tournament in 1982, it resulted in a Class C State championship. Their return to the tournament field comes following a resounding 10-0 victory over Wausaukee in five innings in the sectional final held in White Lake. The Fighting Bluejays are the champions in the North Division of the Marawood Conference this year. Ithaca will be making its fourth overall appearance in the State tournament. The Bulldogs’ previous three experiences came consecutively from 2014-16. That string of appearances produced a State title in 2016 and a runner-up finish in 2015. This season, they beat last year’s runner-up Independence/ Gilmanton 7-4 in the final of the Royall Sectional to continue their quest for a second State title. The Bulldogs are the champions of the Ridge & Valley Conference this spring. Johnson Creek will make its fourth State appearance and its first since finishing runner-up in 2012. The year prior, the Bluejays celebrated their only spring baseball State championship. Their initial State appearance came way back in 1953. This spring, they finished third in the South Division of the Trailways Conference. They routed Green Lake/Princeton 20-6 to win the sectional final hosted by Oakfield to advance to the State semifinals. Thorp advances to the State Tournament for the first time. The Cardinals downed Butternut/Mercer 12-2 in the Shell Lake Sectional final to earn their inaugural berth. During the regular season, they were sixth in the West Division of the Cloverbelt Conference.

NEED RESULTS?:  The quickest way to get results will be to access the baseball results page on the WIAA website at: http://www.wiaawi.org/Sports/BaseballSpring.aspx and choose the appropriate links on the Spring Baseball State Tournament results page.  

FOLLOW THE TOURNEY ON SOCIAL MEDIA:  Receive the updates of the State Spring Baseball Tournament on the WIAA State Tournament Twitter accounts. The Twitter account is @wiaawistate with the hashtag #wiaabase. Also like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram at wiaawi, and add us on Snapchat at wiaawis.

via WIAA press release

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