State Football Championships Preview



Monday, November 12, 2018

State Football Championships Preview

THE CHAMPIONSHIPS:  The 43rd Annual Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association Football State Championship Finals will be held Thursday and Friday, Nov. 15-16, at Camp Randall Stadium on the campus of the University of Wisconsin in Madison, Wis. 

PURCHASE TICKETS ONLINE:  Avoid the lines the day of the game by buying State Football Finals tickets now online at or find the ticket link on the home page of the WIAA website. Ticket prices for the event are $8 per game at the gate with an additional $2 convenience fee for online purchases, $20 for a Thursday all-day pass, $15 for a Friday all-day pass and $30 for a two-day pass. Admission for children 6-years old and under is $1 per game. 

Thursday, Nov. 15
Div. 7 -  Black Hawk (12-0) vs. Edgar (13-0) - 10 a.m.
Div. 6 -   Iola-Scandinavia (13-0) vs. Racine Lutheran (11-2) - 1 p.m.
Div. 5 -  Stratford (11-2) vs. St. Mary’s Springs (13-0) - 4 p.m.
Div. 4 -  St. Croix Central (13-0) vs. Racine St. Catherine’s (13-0) - 7 p.m.

Friday, Nov. 16
Div. 3 - West De Pere (13-0) vs. Catholic Memorial (12-1) - 10 a.m.
Div. 2 - Homestead (13-0) vs. Brookfield Central (12-1) - 1 p.m. 
Div. 1 - Kimberly (12-1) vs. Muskego (13-0) - 4 p.m.

ON THE AIR:  The championship finals of all seven divisions will be televised live on Fox Sports Wisconsin. Check local cable listings for the FS Wisconsin channel in your area. All games televised on FOX Sports Wisconsin will be available in high definition, and will be streamed live via the FOX Sports app. The FOX Sports app, available to iOS and Android devices, provides live streaming video of FOX Sports content along with highlights and instant alerts for scores and key plays.  Fans can download the mobile app for free from the Apple App Store and Google Play. Streaming on the FOX Sports app is also available on connected devices, including on AppleTV, Android TV, FireTV, Roku and Xbox One.

LAST YEAR:  Kimberly defeated Sun Prairie 27-7 in the Division 1 final to win the championship. In Division 2, Waunakee posted a 14-13 win over Brookfield Central, and Rice Lake was a 25-3 victor over New Berlin Eisenhower in the Division 3 title game. Lodi rolled to a 17-10 overtime win over St. Croix Central in the Division 4 championship game, and Amherst defeated Lake Country Lutheran 28-21 to win the Division 5 title. In Division 6, St. Mary’s Springs was the champion with a 35-12 win over Iola-Scandinavia, and Bangor was crowned the champion in Division 7 with a 37-14 victory over Black Hawk.

CHAMPIONSHIP FINALS HISTORY:  The WIAA began sponsoring the playoff tournament series in 1976. The first two championships featured four divisions. In 1978, the field expanded to five divisions. The playoffs were again expanded to include six divisions in 1981. In 1996, the playoff field was further expanded to 192 teams qualifying for the post-season. In 2002, the tournament expanded to its current seven-divisions format with 224 teams. The championships have all been at Camp Randall Stadium since 1982. Edgar, Kimberly, Lancaster, St. Mary’s Springs and Stratford have won the most championships with seven. Arrowhead and Waunakee are next on the list with six. D.C. Everest, Homestead, Menomonie, Monroe and Osseo-Fairchild have each won five. Arrowhead leads the membership in title game appearances with 13. Darlington and now Edgar are next with 12, and Lancaster and now St. Mary’s Springs have 11. Kimberly and Waunakee have nine, and Menomonie, Monroe and now Stratford have appeared in eight. 

DIVISION 1 NOTES:  Five-time defending champion Kimberly returns to Camp Randall seeking its sixth straight State championship. They have not lost a game in the playoffs since Level 3 of the 2012 postseason. The Papermakers are making their ninth State appearance overall. They won back-to-back Division 2 titles in 2007 and 2008 and added their third in 2013. Their championships in Division 1 have come the last four seasons. They also have one runner-up finish on the ledger, that coming in Division 2 in 2009. Kimberly finished atop the North Division of the Valley Football Association this year. The Papermakers edged Fond du Lac to avenge their only loss of the season with a 22-21 overtime win at Level 4. Muskego will appear in its second championship final. The Warriors’ only other experience in the championship game resulted in a runner-up finish in 1994. They won the Classic Eight championship this fall. The Warriors defeated Marquette 24-21 in the semifinal to gain their berth in the championship game. 

DIVISION 2 NOTES:  Homestead is playing in its seventh title game and its first since 2015 when the Highlanders won their second Division 2 championship and their fifth championship overall. Their first Division 2 crown came in 2012.  Their first four trips to the finals came in Division 1. The Highlanders made three straight title game appearances from 2006-08, which resulted in titles in Division 1 in 2006 and 2008, and a runner-up finish in 2007. The Highlanders were also crowned State champions in 1999. They are the champions of the North Shore Conference this season, and they defeated Marshfield 12-7 at Level 4 to advance to the final. Last year’s runner-up Brookfield Central is making its second consecutive appearance in the title game and its fifth overall. The Lancers are looking for their first State title, having finished runner-up in each of their previous four experiences, including 1999, 2002, 2006 and again last season. They were runners-up in the  Greater Metro Conference behind Marquette this season, and they earned another chance to play for their first title by avenging last year’s loss to Waunakee in the title game with a 20-13 triumph in their rematch with the Warriors at Level 4.

DIVISION 3 NOTES:  West De Pere is back in the title game for the first time since 2011, which was the third of three straight appearances in the championship game. Those three experiences resulted in back-to-back titles in 2010-11 and a runner-up finish in 2009. The Phantoms earned their return to Camp Randall with a 35-14 victory over last years’ champion Rice Lake at Level 4. They are the champions of the Bay Conference this year. Catholic Memorial is making its sixth appearance in the State final. The Crusaders won Division 3 State titles in 2012 and 2016 to go with their runner-up finishes in Division 2 in 2001, and in Division 3 in 2010 and 2015. Before joining the WIAA, the Crusaders won WISAA titles in 1979, 1989, 1993 and 1996. They were also runners-up six times. This season, they placed second in the Classic 8 Conference behind Division 1 finalist Muskego. They advance to the championship game following a 41-14 win over last year’s runner-up New Berlin Eisenhower at Level 4. 
DIVISION 4 NOTES:  Last year’s runner-up St. Croix Central  returns to the championship final for the third year in a row and for the fourth time overall. The Panthers have won two championships, including the Division 4 title in 2016 and a Division 5 championship in 1988. This year, they rolled to a 48-25 win over Little Chute at Level 4 to continue their quest for the program’s second title in the past three years. The Panthers are the champions of the Middle Border Conference this season. Racine St. Catherine’s is making its first appearance in the title game. The Angels’ furthest advance in the playoffs prior to this season was to Level 4 in Division 5 in 2007 and 2014. They celebrate their first advance to the title game following a 30-28 win over Lakeside Lutheran at Level 4. They are the champions in the Metro Conference this season. 

DIVISION 5 NOTES:  St. Mary’s Springs, last year’s champion in Division 6, is making its second straight appearance in the finals, and the Ledgers’ eighth in the last 10 seasons. They have 11 championship game appearances overall with seven State titles. They won the Division 5 championship in 2009 and the Division 6 titles in 2002, 2011, 2012, 2014, 2015 and again last year. In addition, they have finished runner-up in Division 6 in 2003, 2005 and 2010. This year, they are the champions of the Wisconsin Flyway Conference. The Ledgers rolled to a 41-12 win over last season’s runner-up Lake Country Lutheran in their Level 4 match-up to earn the opportunity to gain an eighth State title. Prior to joining the WIAA, St. Mary’s Springs won WISAA crowns  in 1983, 1984, 1990, 1991, 1995, 1997, 1998 and 1999.  In addition, the Ledgers were WISAA runners-up  in 1975, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1989 and 1992.  Stratford returns to the championship final for the eighth time and for the first time since a run of six straight titles in Division 6 from 2003-08. The Tigers also won the Division 5 crown in 1986, giving them seven championships overall. They are the only program to win six straight State championships. The Tigers were runners-up in the Marawood Conference this season behind Division 7 finalist Edgar. They defeated Spencer/Columbus Catholic in the semifinal, 22-6.

DIVISION 6 NOTES:  Last season’s runner-up Iola-Scandinavia is making its fourth championship game appearance. The Thunderbirds are seeking their first title. They finished runner-up in Division 5 in their first appearance in 1999 and runner-up in Division 6 in their last two experiences in 2007 and last season. This year, they are champions in the Large Division of the Central Wisconsin Conference. They hung on to defeat Grantsburg 27-25 at Level 4 to advance to the final. Racine Lutheran makes its initial appearance in the finals. The furthest advance prior to this season was to Level 4 of the playoffs in 2009. Prior to joining the WIAA, the Crusaders appeared in one championship game in the former WISAA and finished runner-up in Class B in 1979. This season, they finished in third place in the Metro Classic Conference, which was won by Division 4 finalist Racine St. Catherine’s. Their road to the title game culminated with a 55-28 win over Lancaster in Level 4.

DIVISION 7 NOTES:  Last year’s runner-up Black Hawk will be playing in the State game for the fourth time. Those experiences resulted in a runner-up finish in Division 6 in 1998, a Division 7 championship in 2013 and last season’s runner-up finish in Division 7. The Warriors are the champions of the Six Rivers Conference this season. They gained revenge on Bangor, which beat the Warriors in the championship game last season, with a 24-6 victory at Level 4 to return to the championship final. Edgar will play in the State title game for the 12th time. The Wildcats have won seven championships. They won the Division 7 crown in 2016,  Division 6 championships in 2009 and 2010, Division 5 titles in 1992, 1999 and 2001; and a Division 4 gold trophy in 1979.  In addition, the Wildcats have runner-up finishes in 1991, 1998, 2000 and 2008. They are the champions in the Marawood Conference this fall, and they blanked Reedsville 41-0 at Level 4 to earn the chance at their eighth title.

EIGHT-PLAYER RECAP:  Sevastopol (11-1) won the first eight-player football State championship game with a 38-30 victory over Luck (11-1) Nov. 3 at Forward Field at Oriole Park in Stanley, Wis. Trailing 30-22 in the fourth quarter, the Pioneers tied the score on a 48-yard pass from Nathan Stenzel to Max Krohn and added then the two-point conversion. Stenzel gave Sevastopol its first lead of the game with a 4-yard run with 2:08 remaining in the game to break a 30-30 tie and propel the Pioneers to the title.

FOLLOW FINALS ON SOCIAL MESSAGING: Receive updates of the State Football Finals on the WIAA State Tournament Twitter account @wiaawistate with the hashtag #wiaafb. Also like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram at wiaawi, and add us on Snapchat at wiaawis.

NEED RESULTS?:  Results and statistics will be available on the WIAA website approximately 15 minutes following the conclusion of each title game at:

WILSON IS THE OFFICIAL BALL:  Wilson is the official game ball of the WIAA State Football Finals. Wilson footballs are also the official ball at Levels 3 and 4 of the playoffs. The agreement with Wilson is effective through 2018.


Theme picker