WIAA GIRLS STATE TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE
At Resch Center, Ashwaubenon
1:35 p.m. — Wausau Newman (20-7) vs. Wisconsin Rapids Assumption (26-1)
South Shore (26-0) vs. Barneveld (26-1), 25 minutes after first game ends
6:35 p.m. — Algoma (24-2) vs. Cuba City (24-1)
Colfax (25-1) vs. Racine Prairie (23-2), 25 minutes after first game ends
9:05 a.m. — Kewaunee (25-1) vs. Lodi (24-2)
Neillsville (26-0) vs. East Troy (25-1), 25 minutes after first game ends
1:35 p.m. — Green Bay Notre Dame (20-6) vs. Milton (19-7)
New London (26-0) vs. New Berlin Eisenhower (24-2), 25 minutes after first game ends
6:35 p.m. — Hartland Arrowhead (18-8) vs. Mukwonago (24-2)
Superior (23-3) vs. Milwaukee Riverside (22-4), 25 minutes after first game ends
Saturday’s championship games
11:05 a.m. — Division 5, 4, 3
Hartland Arrowhead girls basketball coach Rick Witte speaks fondly when talking about the Classic 8 Conference his team plays in, pointing out how so many of its teams make each other better throughout the season.
Perhaps he’s on to something.
Arrowhead and conference rival Mukwonago are two of the four teams in the Division 1 field for the WIAA state tournament.
The two will play each other for the third time this season when they meet in a state semifinal on Friday night at the Resch Center.
Mukwonago beat Arrowhead 50-44 on Jan. 11, before Arrowhead returned the favor with a 50-49 win on Feb. 21.
Mukwonago finished first in league play and boasts a strong trio of guards that includes freshman Bre Cera, a University of Wisconsin-Green Bay recruit.
“Our conference schedule really prepared us for the tournament schedule,” said Witte, whose team finished third in league play. “These coaches in the Classic 8 are class acts. All of them. We help each other out when we need to and compete when we have to.”
The game against Mukwonago perhaps is even more special for Witte, who is in his first season as head coach at Arrowhead. He graduated from Mukwonago and still lives there.
“I did grow up here,” he said. “I get enough flak when I go to the grocery story or when I’m out in my yard for coaching and teaching out at Arrowhead.
“But Mukwonago is such a well-coached team that is moving in the right direction and playing so well right now, my reaction was like, ‘Are you serious? We have to play these guys again?”
Whichever team represents the Classic 8 in the title game on Saturday will face either a high-scoring Milwaukee Riverside team with star Kansas State recruit Breanna Lewis or a high-scoring Superior team that has several Division I prospects.
It’s a list that includes junior guard-forward Jessica Lindstrom, who is averaging 21.0 points and 16.5 rebounds and already has offers from schools such as Marquette and North Dakota.
Milwaukee Riverside coach Donald Nelson said before the season that he felt his team should get to state, and he never lost confidence even after a 1-4 start that included losses to De Pere and Bay Port.
The Tigers have won 21 straight and are averaging 75.1 points, the most of any D1 team at state.
“We had a real tough schedule the first two weeks, we played four games and we played three teams that were ranked in the state in Division 1 and a team ranked in Division 2,” Nelson said. “We really packed it in to see what we had at the beginning. After that, we went to the lab and fixed a few things and righted the ship.”
The Tigers were not playing good enough defense early, but that has changed since then.
They will be tested against Superior, which is averaging 67.2 points.
“We don’t back down from a challenge,” said Superior coach Phillip Roe, whose team is making its first appearance at state since 1995. “We are excited for the challenge with Milwaukee Riverside.”
Coach: Rick Witte (18-8, first season).
Miles from Resch Center: 124.
Season record: 18-8 (10-4, Classic 8 Conference, third place).
State appearances: Eight.
Last time at state: 1996 (lost to Milwaukee Washington in quarterfinal, 55-39).
Notes: The Warhawks have won two state championships, the first in 1988 and the last in 1991. ... Arrowhead beat Kimberly 43-41 in a sectional championship after the Papermakers defeated top-ranked De Pere in a sectional semifinal. ... The team will face Mukwonago in a state semifinal. Mukwonago finished first in the Classic 8. Arrowhead went 1-1 against its conference foe, losing 50-44 on Jan. 11 and winning 50-49 on Feb. 21. ... Junior guard Kelly Smith is averaging a team-high 14.1 points. She is the only player scoring in double figures. ... Arrowhead likes to spread it out on offense and create off the dribble. ... Arrowhead had a stretch of seven losses in nine games during the regular season. Witte feels it was due to the players getting comfortable in their roles in their first season in his system. They have won 10 of 11 since that span. ... Witte is a graduate of Mukwonago and still lives in the community.
Coach’s take: “I couldn’t be more proud of our conference. We beat up on each other every Tuesday and Friday, but we get better from it. When you play teams like that night in and night out, our conference schedule really prepared us for the tournament schedule. I’m lucky to be a part of this conference.”
|Stevens Point||W 56-49|
|Wauk. Catholic Memorial||W 61-43|
|Waukesha North||W 51-38|
|Kettle Moraine||W 52-46|
|Waukesha South||W 38-34|
|Glendale Nicolet||W 61-57|
|Milwaukee King||L 70-54|
|Waukesha West||L 58-50|
|Milwaukee King||W 74-54|
|Eau Claire North||L 65-59|
|Wauk. Catholic Memorial||W 67-53|
|New Berlin||W 50-48|
|Waukesha North||W 53-44|
|Kettle Moraine||L 56-46|
|Waukesha South||W 56-46|
|Waukesha West||W 52-48|
|Menomonee Falls||W 57-50|
|Sussex Hamilton||W 46-40|
|Waukesha West||W 47-37 (OT)|
Coach: Todd Frohwirth (34-14, second season).
Miles from Resch Center: 146.
Season record: 24-2 (12-2, Classic 8 Conference, first place).
State appearances: Six.
Last time at state: 2003 (lost to Middleton in quarterfinal, 38-36).
Notes: The Indians never have advanced past the semifinal round at state. ... Senior guard Jenny Tuttle averaged 14.6 points and shot 39.0 percent from 3-point range. Tuttle will play at Winona State, a Division II school in Minnesota, next season. ... Freshman guard and University of Wisconsin-Green Bay recruit Bre Cera was second on the team with 10.3 points per game. Cera is a slasher on offense, and her defense has allowed the team to extend its pressure. She gave a verbal commitment to the Phoenix before the season, based off her strong play during the AAU season ... Tuttle and Cera have combined to make 99 3-pointers this season. ... Mukwonago is mostly known for its strong defense, in part because of its quick guards. The offense averaged 55.0 points per game and shot 40.1 percent from the field. ... The Indians had their 17-game winning streak end in a loss to Arrowhead in a regular-season finale.
Coach’s take: “We played well all season, mostly on the defensive end. Our offense comes and goes. We really don’t talk about offense much. The way we play offense, sometimes the ball goes in and sometimes it doesn’t. We feel we can match up and play really fast basketball and play really solid defense no matter who we play.”
|Racine Park||W 87-46|
|Waukesha West||L 45-38|
|Wauk. Catholic Memorial||W 64-36|
|Waukesha North||W 59-30|
|Kettle Moraine||W 41-34|
|Brookfield East||W 69-42|
|Milwaukee Pius XI||W 40-37|
|Waukesha South||W 54-34|
|Hartland Arrowhead||W 50-44|
|Brookfield Central||W 47-42|
|Waukesha West||W 63-62|
|New Berlin West||W 49-39|
|Wauk. Catholic Memorial||W 72-54|
|Waukesha North||W 56-40|
|Kettle Moraine||W 52-27|
|Waukesha South||W 57-40|
|Hartland Arrowhead||L 50-49|
|Beloit Memorial||W 73-54|
|Muskego||W 52-50 (OT)|
|Janesville Parker||W 44-30|
|Sun Prairie||W 53-38|
Coach: Phillip Roe (40-10, second season).
Miles from Resch Center: 324.
Season record: 23-3 (8-0, Lake Superior Conference, first place).
State appearances: Two.
Last time at state: 1995 (lost to La Crosse Central in quarterfinal, 61-40).
Notes: The Spartans have three players averaging double figures, highlighted by junior guard-forward Jessica Lindstrom. The 5-foot-11 Lindstrom is averaging 21.0 points and 16.5 rebounds, while junior point guard Hailey Kontny is averaging 15.8 points and sophomore guard Alyssa Correll 10.9 points. ... Lindstrom has offers from Marquette and North Dakota. She is able to play any of the post positions and is one of the team’s best athletes. She also plays volleyball and softball for Superior. ... Kontny also is a Division I prospect and has received offers from several schools, including Saint Louis, North Dakota and Northern Illinois. ... The Spartans like to play up-tempo. They are averaging 67.2 points and shooting 45.5 percent from the field.
Coach’s take: “We have had the toughest schedule in program history. We have beaten some good teams from Minnesota. It’s been a great year.”
|Denfeld (Minn.)||W 80-27|
|Eau Claire North||W 63-59|
|Proctor (Minn.)||W 79-17|
|Chisago Lakes (Minn.)||W 65-39|
|Denfeld (Minn.)||W 61-38|
|Chippewa Falls||W 61-59|
|Wausau West||W 66-57|
|D.C Everest||W 59-56|
|Hermantown (Min.)||W 66-31|
|Cloquet (Min.)||W 79-52|
|Eden Prairie (Min.)||L 66-48|
|Eau Claire Memorial||W 64-63 (OT)|
|Duluth Marshall (Min.)||W 76-32|
|Grand Rapids (Min.)||W 85-52|
|Esko (Min.)||W 65-63 (2 OT)|
|DeLasalle (Min.)||L 77-61|
|Duluth East (Min.)||W 82-50|
|Rice Lake||W 74-51|
|Eau Claire North||W 67-59|
|Chippewa Falls||W 52-49|
|Oshkosh North||W 54-51|
Coach: Donald Nelson (43-27, third season).
Miles from Resch Center: 116.
Season record: 22-4 (12-0, Milwaukee City-Gold, first place).
State appearances: Four.
Last time at state: 2005 (lost to Waukesha South in semifinal, 64-51).
Notes: The Tigers have been in the semifinal round twice. ... The team started the season 1-4, including losses to De Pere and Bay Port. They have won 21 straight. ... Nelson said the defense was nowhere near where it should have been at the start of the season when his players battled injuries and inexperience. ... The Tigers averaged 75.1 points per game, which is the most of any of the four teams at D1 state. ... Senior center-forward Breanna Lewis is averaging 15.5 points and 13.3 rebounds. She will play at Kansas State next season. ... Sophomore guard-forward Amani Wilborn leads the team with 15.7 points and is shooting 51.0 percent from the floor. She struggled with her shot earlier in her career, but has improved greatly. ... The Tigers scored 81 or more points in 11 games. They scored a season-high 97 in a win over Milwaukee Madison.
Coach’s take: “We knew we were bringing back some very talented players. I knew we were going to have a great chance to make it to the tournament, and here we are, two games away from our ultimate goal.”
|De Pere||L 50-32|
|Bay Port||L 43-31|
|Oak Creek||L 48-47|
|Milw. Washington||W 88-25|
|Milw. Bradley Tech||W 84-67|
|Milw. King||W 87-59|
|Milw. Vincent||W 87-39|
|Heritage Christian||W 65-50|
|Milw. Madison||W 93-18|
|Menomonee Falls||W 65-42|
|Milw. Hamilton||W 81-34|
|Milw. Washington||W 89-53|
|Milw. Bradley Tech||W 82-59|
|Milw. Vincent||W 76-43|
|Milw. Madison||W 97-24|
|Janesville Parker||W 75-56|
|Milw. Hamilton||W 87-27|
|Milw. South||W 75-17|
|Milw. King||W 77-67|
|Milw. Bay View||W 96-16|
|Brookfield Central||W 66-58|
|Divine Savior Holy Angels||W 64-59|
— firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @scottvenci