The Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association, in cooperation with Rural Mutual Insurance, has chosen the recipients of the team sportsmanship awards for the 2019 winter State Tournaments.
The winners of the prestigious sportsmanship recognition are Marshall in girls basketball, Ellsworth in team wrestling, New Glarus in boys basketball and Mount Horeb in gymnastics. Boys and girls hockey did not have a recipient of the award.
Not only did Marshall win the Division 3 State girls basketball championship for the second straight season, the Cardinals also repeat as recipients of the sportsmanship award. It’s the third time the school has won the award. The first came in boys basketball in 2000. The Cardinals and their community maintained the good sportsmanship they displayed in 2018 en route to winning consecutive awards. They defeated Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau 58-37 in the semifinals, followed by a 64-56 victory over Laconia in the championship game. Colby, Fall River, Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau and Newman Catholic were also in contention to receive the award and were recognized with honorable mention.
Ellsworth is also a back-to-back selection, being selected as the award recipient in team wrestling again this year. The evaluations and reports identified the Panthers having exhibited the sportsmanship most worthy of the award at the State team wrestling tournament last month. It is the fifth time the Panthers have received the award in wrestling. In addition to last season, they were also recognized for their sportsmanship efforts in 1999, 2008 and 2010. The Panthers cruised to a 50-18 victory over Wisconsin Lutheran in the Division 2 semifinals before falling to Freedom in the title match, 35-16. Arrowhead, Burlington, Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau/Melrose-Mindoro, Holmen, St. Croix Falls, Stoughton and Wisconsin Lutheran were given honorable mention for the award.
New Glarus displayed outstanding sportsmanship with visible administrative oversight and encouragement in winning the Division 4 championship at the State Boys Basketball Tournament. After a 44-41 victory over top-seeded Roncalli in the semifinals, the Glarner Knights downed Lourdes Academy 67-62 in the championship game. It is the second time New Glarus has been chosen winner of the sportsmanship award. The Glarner Knights earned the honor with Belleville in a co-op arrangement in girls soccer in 2016. Bangor, Columbus Catholic, La Crosse Central, McDonell Catholic, Northwestern and Roncalli each received honorable mention for the award.
Mount Horeb receives the sportsmanship award in gymnastics for the second time and for the third time overall. The Raiders also earned the honor in gymnastics in 2015 and was recognized in boys soccer in 2012. They placed second in the Division 2 team competition at the State gymnastics championships in March. The schools and communities receiving honorable mention include Ashland, Hartford, Marshfield and River Falls.
Although no recipient was recognized in girls hockey, the D.C. Everest Co-op, which includes D.C. Everest, Marathon, Merrill, Mosinee, Wausau East and Wausau West, and the Sun Prairie Co-op, which includes Sun Prairie, DeForest, Madison East, Madison La Follette and Waunakee received honorable mention for the award. There was no sportsmanship award recognition awarded in boys hockey this year.
The WIAA/Rural Mutual Insurance sportsmanship award is presented to one school and community in each of the State team tournaments that exhibits exemplary sportsmanship. The 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 featured. 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, area hotels and restaurants. Rural Mutual Insurance has been a sponsor of this award since 1965, and their partnership contributes to the promotion of sportsmanship in education-based athletics as a valued corporate partner of the WIAA.
via WIAA press release