STEVENS POINT, Wis. – The Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association, in cooperation with Rural Mutual Insurance Company, has selected the team Sportsmanship Award winners for the 2018 fall State tournaments.
The recipients of the sportsmanship awards are River Ridge in girls volleyball, Stratford in football, McFarland in boys soccer, Brookfield East in boys volleyball and Homestead in girls team tennis.
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 showcased.
River Ridge earned its second sportsmanship recognition with its positive support for the Timberwolves at the State Girls Volleyball Tournament. They also claimed the award in football back in 1997. They advanced to State for the first time in the program’s history. They lost to Clayton 26-24, 26-24, 25-20 in the Division 4 semifinals. Honorable mention for the award went to Clayton, Grantsburg, Greendale and Sun Prairie.
Stratford is this year’s recipient of the award for the State football finals. The Tigers earned the honor for the second time with both coming in football. They also received recognition following the 2006 football finals. The Stratford contingent displayed outstanding sportsmanship, enthusiasm and community support in a 20-17 loss to St. Mary’s Springs in the Division 5 title game. It was the Tigers’ eighth appearance in the State football championship game. Schools receiving honorable mention were Black Hawk, Iola-Scandinavia, St. Croix Central and West De Pere.
McFarland is the recipient of the Sportsmanship Award in boys soccer, which marks the second time the Spartans have received the award in any sport. Their previous recognition came in girls soccer in 2007. They made their second State tournament appearance this season, which resulted in a State runner-up finish. They blanked Plymouth 2-0 in the Division 3 State semifinal before falling 3-1 to Pius XI Catholic in the championship game. Amery, Baldwin-Woodville, Cedarburg, Holmen, Kettle Moraine Lutheran, Marquette, New Berlin Eisenhower and Plymouth received honorable mention recognition.
Homestead is the recipient of the Sportsmanship Award in girls tennis for the second time in the past three seasons, having also earned the recognition in the sport in 2016. It marks the third time the school has been bestowed the honor overall. The Highlanders also won the award in boys tennis in 2010. They captured the Division 1 title this fall by downing Neenah 6-1 in the quarterfinals, defeating Whitefish Bay 5-2 in the semifinals and edging Divine Savior Holy Angels 4-3 in the championship match. Badger and University School of Milwaukee were given honorable mention for the award.
Brookfield East was determined to possess the most outstanding sportsmanship on a short list of schools qualifying for the State Boys Volleyball Tournament. It’s the second time the Spartans have been recognized for their sportsmanship. The other was also in boys volleyball, having received the honor in 2013. This season, they lost 25-17, 25-18, 25-16 in the State quarterfinals. Honorable mention for the award was extended to Franklin.
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.
# WIAA #