State Girls Basketball Tournament Preview

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Monday, March 7, 2016

State Girls Basketball Tournament Preview

THE STATE TOURNAMENT:  The 41st Annual Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association Girls Basketball State Championships will take place Thursday-Saturday, March 10-12, at the Resch Center in Green Bay, Wis. 

PURCHASING TICKETS:  Ticket price for the tourney is $10 per session when purchased at the Resch Center. Tickets for the tournament will also be available for purchase online at the Ticket Star website:  All-session, as well as individual session tickets are available for purchase online for $12 per session. A link is also provided on the WIAA website: Call Ticket Star at 1-800-895-0071. 

STATE TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE:  The single elimination tournament features a five division format with four teams qualifying in each of the five divisions. 

Thursday, March 10
Time Div. Pairings 

1:35 p.m.  3 Hayward (25-1) vs. Edgewood (20-6)
3 Xavier (18-8) vs. Milw. School of Languages (20-4)*

6:35 p.m.  4 Regis (22-4) vs. Mineral Point (24-2)
4 Marathon (23-3) vs. Kenosha St. Joseph (24-2)*

Friday, March 11
Time Div. Pairings

9:05 a.m.  5 Clayton (26-1) vs. Barneveld (27-0)
5 Assumption (23-4) vs. Fall River (22-4)*

1:35 p.m.   2 Onalaska (21-5) vs. Stoughton (24-2)
2 Notre Dame (24-2) vs. New Berlin Eisenhower (21-5)* 

6:35 p.m.  1 Appleton North (22-4) vs. Verona (23-3)
1 Mukwonago (23-3) vs. Oak Creek (23-3)*

Saturday, March 12
Time Div. Pairings

9:30 a.m.  3-Point Challenge
11:05 p.m. 5 Division 5 Championship Game
4 Division 4 Championship Game*
3 Division 3 Championship Game*

6:35 p.m.  2 Division 2 Championship Game
1 Division 1 Championship Game*

*Note: Subsequent games of each session will begin approximately 15 minutes following the previous game.

STATE TOURNAMENT ON THE AIR:  The State Tournament will be televised live on WKOW-TV in Madison, WAOW-TV in Wausau, WXOW-TV in La Crosse, WQOW-TV in Eau Claire, WYOW-TV in Eagle River, WMOW-TV in Crandon, WMLW-TV in Milwaukee, KBJR-MY9 in Duluth/Superior and WCWF W-14 in Green Bay and the Fox Valley. The Wisconsin Division of Quincy Media, Inc., will produce the coverage. The championships will also be streamed on the statewide network station websites. Also,  download the Magic of March App for free, your source for live streaming video, scores, highlights and more about the WIAA State basketball tournaments. As you explore the App, you'll find great stories and videos. Live coverage of the tournaments on iOS or Android phones and tablets are also available on the App.

POST-GAME MEDIA CONFERENCES STREAMED:  The post-game media conferences will be shown live without subscription on the portal of the NFHS Network immediately following each game.

TEAM TOURNAMENT HISTORY:  The first WIAA State Girls Basketball Championship Tournament was held in 1976. The tournament was held at the UW Field House from 1976-97 and also in 1999, 2000 and 2002. The championships were held in the Kohl Center in 1998, 2001, 2003, 2005 and 2010-12, and at the Alliant Energy Center in 2004 and 2006-09. The current site of the tournament, the Resch Center in Green Bay, became the home of the tournament in 2013. The tournament featured a three-class format until 1991, when a four-division format was adopted. In 2011, a fifth division was added. Cuba City has won the most State titles over the years with 11 followed by Barneveld with six and Milwaukee Washington with five. Fall Creek, Flambeau and Kimberly have won four. There have been 84 different schools that have won championships. Cuba City has the distinction of having qualified for the most State Tournaments with 16. Barneveld and Janesville Parker have participated 12 times. Fall Creek has qualified for 11 State Tournaments with Durand, Kimberly, Milwaukee Washington, Newman Catholic and Oostburg having qualified 10 times.

ABOUT THE DIVISION 1 FIELD:  Mukwonago is making its eighth appearance at State and its third in the past four seasons. The Indians’ most notable result from the previous experiences was their runner-up finish in 2013. They earned another trip to State with a 42-31 win over Arrowhead in the Whitefish Bay Sectional final. They finished in a tie for first place with Kettle Moraine in the Classic 8 Conference this season. Oak Creek returns to the tournament field for the first time since winning the State title in 2014 and for the sixth time overall. The Knights had a string of three straight appearances from 1982-84, which produced a runner-up finish in 1983. They are the champions of the Southeastern Conference this season, and they advance to the State semifinals from the West Allis Central Sectional after defeating defending champion Divine Savior Holy Angels 50-40 in the final. Verona qualifies for the State Tournament for the first time since the final appearance of three straight experiences in 2010, which also accounts for the program’s overall total. The Wildcats’ furthest advance at State prior to this year was to the semifinals in 2008. They beat Janesville Craig 63-45 in the final of the Janesville Parker Sectional last week to return to State. The Wildcats are the co-champions of the Big Eight Conference with Middleton this season. Appleton North returns to State for the first time since 2001 and for the  third time overall. The Lightning advanced to the semifinals in 1999 and fell in the quarterfinals in 2001 to account for their prior appearances. They edged Marshfield in the final of the D.C. Everest Sectional final, 56-54, in overtime to advance to the State semifinals. They finished runner-up in the Fox Valley Association this season. 

ABOUT THE DIVISION 2 FIELD:  Notre Dame is back in the tournament for the fourth time in the past five seasons and for the seventh time overall. The Tritons won back-to-back State titles in 2013-14 to go with the championship earned in the program’s first-ever appearance in 2001. In addition, they finished runner-up in 2005. Prior to joining the WIAA, the Tritons were the Division 1 runners-up in 1994 as a former member of WISAA. This season, they finished atop the Fox River Classic Conference standings and have advanced to the semifinals through the Neenah Sectional following a 65-61 overtime victory over Beaver Dam in the final. New Berlin Eisenhower returns to State for the first time since the second of back-to-back appearances in 2012-13 that resulted in runner-up finishes. The Lions are making their fifth appearance overall, which includes a State championship in 2010. They ousted defending champion Pius XI Catholic 36-32 in the Brown Deer Sectional final to advance into the final field of four.  They finished runner-up to Pius XI Catholic in the West Division of the Woodland Conference this season. Stoughton’s only other State Tournament experience came back in 1998 with a loss in the Division 1 quarterfinals. The Vikings’ return comes virtue of their 35-34 overtime victory over Union Grove in the Middleton Sectional final. They are the champions of the South Division of the Badger Conference this season. It’s the first State Tournament experience for Onalaska. The Hilltoppers path through the Eau Claire North Sectional culminated with a 59-52 win over Hortonville in the final. They placed third in the Mississippi Valley Conference this year. 

ABOUT THE DIVISION 3 FIELD:  Last year’s runner-up Xavier is appearing in its second State Tournament after qualifying for the first time last season. The Hawks’ return to the final field of four this year is a result of a 64-56 win over Wrightstown in the Green Bay Preble Sectional final. They placed third in the Bay Conference this season. As a former member of WISAA, the Hawks won the title in 1978 and were runners-up an additional nine times.  Hayward is making its second straight appearance at State and its third overall. The Hurricanes lost in the semifinals last season and in their first experience in Class B in 1989. They are the co-champions of the Heart O’North Conference with Bloomer this season. They return to the tournament field after defeating Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau 56-45 in the Menomonie Sectional final. Edgewood is making its inaugural appearance in the State Tournament. The Crusaders gained a berth in the State semifinals with a 50-35 victory over Prairie du Chien in the Sun Prairie Sectional final. They finished fourth in the South Division of the Badger Conference this year. The Crusaders won a Class A title in 1979 as a former member of WISAA. Milwaukee School of Languages will also be appearing in its first State Tournament. The Hawks earned their berth in the semifinals following a 55-46 win over Waupun in the Waukesha South Sectional final. They finished third in the Gold Division of the Milwaukee City Conference this season.

ABOUT THE DIVISION 4 FIELD:  Marathon returns to State for the second season in a row and for the sixth time overall. The Red Raiders experienced a three-year run of appearances from 1996-98 that produced a Division 3 title in 1998. They also claimed a runner-up finish in Class C in 1987. The Red Raiders defeated Algoma 51-40 in the final of the Waupaca Sectional after finishing in a three-way tie for first place in the South Division of the Marawood Conference this season with Auburndale and Division 5 qualifier Assumption. Regis is appearing at State for the sixth time as well and for the second time in the last three years. The Lady Ramblers have made back-to-back trips to State on two occasions, in 2003-04 and 2011-12. They have won a pair of State championships with the first coming in 2003 and the second coming in 2011. They finished atop the standings in the Western Division of the Cloverbelt Conference this season. The Lady Ramblers downed Phillips 80-44 in the Durand Sectional final. As a former member of WISAA, Regis won titles in 1986, 1992 and 1993, and was runner-up in 1995 and 1991. Kenosha St. Joseph will be experiencing the State Tournament for the first time following the Lancers’ 58-55 victory over Lourdes Academy in the Brown Deer Sectional final. They won the Metro Classic Conference title this season. As a former member of WISAA, the Lancers recorded a runner-up finish in Division 2 in 1994. Mineral Point will also be making its first-ever appearance in the State Tournament. The Pointers beat Wisconsin Heights 58-54 in the final of the Baraboo Sectional to earn their initial trip to the State Tournament. They are the champions of the Southwest Wisconsin Activities League this season.

ABOUT THE DIVISION 5 FIELD:   Two-time defending champion Barneveld qualifies for the State Tournament for the fourth consecutive season and for the 11th time overall. The Golden Eagles have now won six State titles, capturing the crown in 1995, 1998, 1999, 2005, 2014 and again last season. In addition, they have runner-up finishes in 2007 and 2013. They are the champions in the Eastern Division of the Six Rivers Conference this season. The Golden Eagles beat Hillsboro 66-34 in the final of the Richland Center Sectional to remain the only undefeated team and earn the opportunity to continue their quest to win a third straight title.  Assumption will make its fourth consecutive appearance in the State Tournament, having won the title in 2013 and finishing runner-up the last two seasons. It is the Royals’ fifth journey to State overall. This season they finished in a three-way tie for first place in the South Division of the Marawood Conference with Division 4 qualifier Marathon and Auburndale. Their return to the semifinals resulted from a 55-21 win over Suring in the final of the Oconto Falls Sectional. Clayton will make its second State Tournament appearance. The Bears’ only other State experience came back in 1995, which resulted in a loss in the Division 4 semifinals. They qualify this season following a 61-47 triumph over Bayfield in the Spooner Sectional final. The Bears are the champions in the Central Division of the Lakeland Conference. Fall River has qualified for the State Tournament for the second time after making its first appearance last season, which resulted in a loss in the semifinals. The Lady Pirates beat Sheboygan Lutheran 59-22 in the Watertown Sectional final to earn their return to the State Tournament. They are the champions of the Southern Division of the Trailways Conference this season. 

THREE-POINT CHALLENGE: The WIAA will conduct the second 3-Point Challenge prior to Saturday’s championship games. The event will begin at 9:30 a.m. at the Resch Center. A ticket for the Division 3, 4 and 5 championship games session is required for admittance into the event. The top two players per division were selected for the contest based on the best 3-point field goal percentage with a minimum of 75 attempts during the regular season. Kylie Moe from Brodhead in Division 3 won the inaugural  3-Point Challenge by scoring 15 in the final round. The contestants representing Division 1 are senior Madie Kaelber of Kenosha Indian Trail; junior Caroline Busch from Brookfield Central, who also participated in the contest last year. Representing Division 2 are sophomore Shay Frederick of Hortonville and senior Abby Gerrits of Pewaukee. The Division 3 participants are sophomore Theresa Wichser of Brookfield Academy and senior Sara Winkel of Kiel. Division 4 will be represented by seniors Amira Erdmann of Crandon and Macenzie Kraemer of Wisconsin Heights; and the Division 5 contestants are freshman Shemera Williams of the Milwaukee Academy of Science and senior Devyn Schoonover of Loyal. Visit the information on the WIAA website for more details on the 3-Point Challenge. 

NEED RESULTS?:  The quickest way to get results will be to access the WIAA website and choose the Tournament Information link on the home page or the girls basketball home page. 

FOLLOW STATE TOURNEY ON SOCIAL MEDIA: Receive updates of the State Girls Basketball Tournament on the WIAA State Tournament Twitter account @wiaawistate with the hashtag #wiaagb. Also like us on Facebook,  follow us on Instagram at wiaawi, and add us on Snapchat at wiaawis.

BELLIN ATHLETIC TRAINING:  Bellin Health Sports Medicine is the exclusive provider of licensed athletic training services for the State Girls Basketball Tournament.


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