STEVENS POINT, Wis. – The Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association, in cooperation with Rural Mutual Insurance Company, has selected the team Sportsmanship Award winners for the 2021 fall State Tournaments.
The recipients of the awards are McFarland in girls volleyball, Oostburg in boys soccer, Neenah in girls team tennis and Reedsville in football. Although there was no award recipient in boys volleyball, Kenosha Indian Trail received honorable mention.
The WIAA/Rural Insurance Sportsmanship Award is presented to one school program and community–or communities in the case of cooperative programs–in each of the State team tournaments that demonstrates outstanding sportsmanship. Award winners are determined by the conduct and sportsmanship displayed by athletes, coaches, cheer and support groups, mascots, bands and spectators. Additional consideration is given for the effort of school administrators and chaperones to ensure support for their teams are positive and that the highest ideals of sportsmanship are demonstrated.
McFarland is the 2021 recipient of the award for the State Girls Volleyball Tournament, which was held at the Resch Center in Green Bay on Nov. 4-6. The Spartans earned the honor for the third time overall and for the first time in girls volleyball. The other two recognitions came in girls soccer in 2007 and in boys soccer in 2018. Their large contingent of fans displayed outstanding sportsmanship, enthusiasm and community support during their runner-up performance in Division 2, defeating Pewaukee in the semifinals and falling to Luxemburg-Casco in the championship game. Schools receiving honorable mention were Luxemburg-Casco, Monticello, Oak Creek, Reedsburg, River Falls and Wonewoc-Center.
Oostburg is the recipient of the honor in boys soccer with its display of sportsmanship, especially the with team’s efforts to positively connect with opponents after their games during the State Boys Soccer Tournament at Uihlein Soccer Park in Milwaukee on Nov. 4-6. It marks the fourth time the Flying Dutchmen have received the award overall. Their previous recognitions came in boys basketball in 1986, girls basketball in 2008 and girls volleyball in 2011. They finished runner-up at the State Tournament this season, defeating Arcadia 4-0 in semifinals and coming up on the short end of a 5-4 shootout following a 0-0 tie against Sheboygan Christian/Lutheran in the Division 4 championship game. Rice Lake, River Falls, Sheboygan Christian/Lutheran, St. John’s Northwestern Academies/Chesterton received honorable mention.
Neenah is the recipient of the Sportsmanship Award in girls tennis, which marks the 11th time the Rockets have been bestowed the honor and the third time in girls tennis. They also received the recognition for girls tennis in 2000 and 2015. Neenah’s other eight awards were for boys tennis in 2002, 2006, 2016 and 2017; girls soccer in 2001; and in boys basketball in 1969, 1975 and 1988. The Rockets defeated Divine Savior Holy Angels 4-3 in the championship match to win the Division 1 team title after defeating Hudson 6-1 in the quarterfinals and Middleton 5-2 in the semifinals.
Reedsville earned its first sportsmanship recognition of its positive support for the Panthers at the State Football Championships at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison on Nov. 18. They won the school’s first football State championship in the program’s first-ever appearance in the football championship game. The Panthers shutout previously undefeated Coleman 17-0 to earn the Division 7 crown. Honorable mention for the award went to Colby, Coleman, Ellsworth, Homestead and Pewaukee.
Award winners receive a trophy and banner in recognition of the honor. Schools receiving honorable mention are acknowledged with a certificate of recognition. The selection process includes contributions and evaluations from contest officials, tournament management, police and security personnel, crowd control and ushers, WIAA staff members, and area hotels and restaurants on occasion.
The WIAA, as defined by its Constitution, is a voluntary, unincorporated, and nonprofit organization. The membership oversees interscholastic athletic programs for 516 senior high schools and 45 junior high/middle level schools in its membership.
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