WIAA State Baseball Championships Preview

THE TOURNAMENT: The 72nd Annual Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association Spring Baseball State Tournament will take place Tuesday-Thursday, June 11-13, at Neuroscience Group Field at Fox Cities Stadium in Grand Chute, Wis. Ticket prices for the tourney are $8 per session and $14 for an all-day admission ticket. Tickets are available at the stadium.

TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE AND PAIRINGS: The State Spring Baseball Tournament features four divisions. The single elimination tournament includes eight teams in Division 1 and four each in Divisions 2, 3 and 4. The second game of each session will follow the first game.

Tuesday, June 11

Division 1 Quarterfinals - 8 a.m.

Game 1 - Green Bay Preble (24-3) vs. Burlington (23-5)

Game 2 - Sun Prairie (22-7) vs. Oak Creek (21-6)*

Division 1 Quarterfinals - 1 p.m.

Game 3 - Eau Claire North (22-4) vs. Hamilton (19-8) - on iHeartRadio

Game 4 - Fond du Lac (13-12) vs. Brookfield East (18-8)*

Division 1 Semifinals - 6 p.m.

Game 5 - Winner of Game #1 vs. Winner of Game #2

Game 6 - Winner of Game #3 vs. Winner of Game #4* - on iHeartRadio (if Eau Claire North advances)

Wednesday, June 12

Division 4 Semifinals - 8 a.m.

Game 1 - Webster (28-0) vs. Athens (18-4)

Game 2 - Belmont (17-8) vs. Mineral Point (26-0)*

Division 3 Semifinals - 1 p.m.

Game 1 - Boyceville (19-3) vs. Stratford (20-2) - on iHeartRadio

Game 2 - Markesan (21-5) vs. Ozaukee (12-7)*

Division 2 Semifinals - 6 p.m.

Game 1 - Antigo (19-5) vs. West De Pere (27-2)

Game 2 - McFarland (20-9) vs. Union Grove (26-3)*

Thursday, June 13

Division 4 Final - 9:05 a.m.

Game 3 - Winner of Game #1 vs. Winner of Game #2

Division 3 Final - 12:05 p.m. - on iHeartRadio (if Boyceville advances)

Game 3 - Winner of Game #1 vs. Winner of Game #2

Division 2 Final - 3:05 p.m.

Game 3 - Winner of Game #1 vs. Winner of Game #2

Division 1 Final - 6:05 p.m. - on iHeartRadio (if Eau Claire North advances)

Game 7 - Winner of Game #5 vs. Winner of Game #6

* Begins approximately 35 min. following game 1 of session.

RADIO/STREAM: Eau Claire North (WBIZ-AM) and Boyceville (WMEQ-AM) will be carried on iHeartRadio

PRE-FINALS LIVE ON NFHS NETWORK: The Division 1 quarterfinals and the semifinals of all four divisions of the WIAA State Baseball Tournament will be streamed live on the WIAA.TV portal of the NFHS Network on a subscription basis. To purchase a subscription to the live programming, log-on to www.wiaa.tv and click on the image in the middle of the screen to begin ordering your subscription.

FINALS AIRED LIVE ON FS WISCONSIN: Watch the WIAA State Spring Baseball Championship finals of all Divisions on FS Wisconsin. Check local cable listings for the channel in your area. 

TEAM TOURNAMENT HISTORY: The WIAA has been sponsoring the State Baseball Tournament since 1948. Sun Prairie has won the most State championships with eight, followed by Appleton West with seven, and then Catholic Central and Nekoosa with five. La Crosse Central has appeared in the most State Tournaments with 18. Milwaukee Bradley, Stevens Point and now Sun Prairie have reached State 15 times; Appleton West, Eau Claire North, Janesville Craig and Oconomowoc have appeared in 14; and Fond du Lac and Middleton with 13. Bay Port, Eau Claire Memorial and Kimberly are next with 12 State appearances.

LAST YEAR: Waunakee won the Division 1 championship with a 3-1 victory over Arrowhead in the title game. Waupun captured the Division 2 title with a 4-0 shutout over Jefferson in the championship final. Webster defeated St. Mary Catholic 8-2 to win the Division 3 championship, and Athens won its second consecutive Division 4 crown by outscoring Thorp 13-10 in the championship game.

THE DIVISION 1 FIELD: Green Bay Preble is back in the State quarterfinals for the fourth year in a row and for the fifth time overall. The Hornets’ fell in the quarterfinal round in 2002 and in 2017, and in the semifinals in 2016 and last year. They advance to State this season through the sectional hosted by Preble following a 5-0 blanking of Kimberly in the final. They tied Bay Port for the championship of the Fox River Classic Conference this season. Sun Prairie qualifies for the State Tournament for the 15th time and for the sixth time in the last eight seasons. The Cardinals have been crowned champions eight times, which leads the membership. They won the Class A title in 1974 and added Division 1 championships in 1994, 1997, 2005, 2006, and three in a row from 2012-14. The Cardinals also advanced to the title game in 2017 and finished runner-up. They battered Verona 10-0 in six innings in the sectional final hosted at Middleton. They finished runner-up to Janesville Craig in the Big Eight Conference this spring. Eau Claire North is making its fourth consecutive appearance in the State Tournament and its 14th experience overall. The Huskies won the State title in 2011 and have finished runner-up three times, in 1981, 2002 and 2005. They defeated Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln 9-3 in the final of the sectional hosted by the Huskies to earn another berth in the tournament field. They finished second in the Big Rivers Conference this season. Fond du Lac is back in the State Tournament for the 13th time, and for the first time in almost two decades since winning the championship in 2000. The Cardinals also advanced to the title game in 1959 and finished runner-up. This season, they caught fire in the tournament after placing ninth in the Fox Valley Association during the regular season. They navigated through the Oshkosh North Sectional as the eighth seed to advance by downing 10th-seeded Sheboygan North in the final, 7-3. Burlington is making its sixth appearance in the State Tournament overall and its fourth straight. The Demons’ won the championship the time they advanced to the championship final in 2016. They are the co-champions of the Southern Lakes Conference with Division 2 qualifier Union Grove this spring, and they blanked Kenosha Tremper 2-0 to win the sectional final hosted at Tremper. Oak Creek will be making its initial appearance in the spring tournament, but the Knights have had significant success while associated with the summer baseball season. They made eight appearances in the State Summer Baseball Tournament. The Knights’ won four State titles, which was the most of any school, and they were the only program to win three straight championships (2003-2005). They added another summer title in 2012. The Knights finished second in Southeast Conference this year, and they advanced through the South Milwaukee Sectional with a 16-6 win over West Allis Central in six innings in the final. Hamilton is making its first appearance in the spring version of the State baseball tournament. The Chargers made three appearances while affiliated with the summer baseball tournament. They won the summer baseball championship in 1981 and finished runner-up in 1971. They qualify this year following a 6-3 win over Milton in the Oconomowoc Sectional final. The Chargers were co-champions with Menomonee Falls in Greater Metro Conference this season. Brookfield East is also making its first appearance in the spring baseball season tournament after participating in summer baseball. The Spartans made three State appearances in the summer tournament. They were eliminated from title contention in the quarterfinals in each of those experiences, the most recent in 2011. The Spartans placed third in the Greater Metro Conference this season, and they advanced to the State quarterfinals following a 3-2 win over Menomonee Falls in the Brookfield Central Sectional final.

THE DIVISION 2 FIELD: West De Pere is back in the State Tournament for the first time since 2010 and for the fifth time overall. The Phantoms’ four previous appearances came in the even years from 2004-2010. Those previous experiences produced a State title in 2008 and a runner-up finish in 2006. This season, they were the champions in the Bay Conference. The Phantoms clubbed Seymour 13-3 in six innings in the Winneconne Sectional final to return to the State tourney field. Antigo is returning to the tournament for the first time since 1995 and for the sixth time overall. They are making their sixth State appearance overall. The Red Robins’ furthest advance in the tournament was to the title game in 1970 when they finished runner-up. Their return to the State tourney come virtue of a 7-0 shutout over Tomah in the Altoona Sectional final. The Red Robins are the runners-up in the Great Northern Conference this season. Union Grove returns to the State Tournament field after a long hiatus. The Broncos only other State appearance came in 1952, when they lost in the first round. They are the champions of the Southern Lakes Conference this spring. The Broncos defeated Whitefish Bay 9-2 in the sectional final held in Waukesha to earn their berth in the State Tournament field. McFarland is celebrating its first-ever appearance in a State baseball tournament. The Spartans’ maiden journey to State culminated with 3-2 victory over Edgewood in nine innings in the Baraboo Sectional final. The Spartans placed third in the Rock Valley Conference this spring.

THE DIVISION 3 FIELD: The qualifying field features programs with little-to-no previous State Tournament experience. The program in the division with the most State appearances is Markesan with two. The Hornets’ last qualified in 2016, which resulted in a loss in the semifinals. They are the champions in the West Division of the Trailways Conference this season. The Hornets advance to the State semifinals by virtue of their 3-1 win over Prairie du Chien in the Brodhead Sectional final. Stratford’s only other State experience came in Class C in 1989 when the Tigers were eliminated in their semifinal game. They are the champions of the South Division of the Marawood Conference this spring. Their road to State was paved through the Crandon Sectional and culminated with a 4-3 win over last year’s runner-up St. Mary Catholic. Boyceville makes its second appearance since its only other experience in the State Tournament in 2000. The Bulldogs advanced to the title game that year and finished runner-up. This season they played to a second-place finish in the Dunn-St. Croix Conference. They qualified for the State tourney with a 13-2 victory in five innings over Cumberland in the Chippewa Falls Sectional final. It’s the first time Ozaukee has qualified for a State Baseball tournament. The former summer baseball participant tied for fourth in the Big East Conference standings this year and are the representative from the Random Lake Sectional following the Warriors’13-2 win in five innings over Sturgeon Bay.

THE DIVISION 4 FIELD: Two-time defending champion Athens is back to defend the titles in its fourth overall trip to State. The first time the Fighting Bluejays appeared in the State tournament in 1982, it resulted in a Class C State championship to give them possession of three State championships. Their return to the tournament field comes following a 5-3 victory over Gibraltar/Washington Island in the sectional final held at Crivitz. The Fighting Bluejays are the champions in the North Division of the Marawood Conference this year. Webster makes is third straight State appearance by moving back down a division after moving up to Division 3 last season to win the State championship. The first time the Tigers’ qualified for the State Tournament was in Division 4 in 2017, which resulted in as loss in the semifinals. This season, they pummeled Thorp 14-0 in the Chippewa Falls Sectional final to earn their return to State. They are the champions of the West Division of the Lakeland Conference this season. Mineral Point is back in the State Tournament for the second year in a row after making its first-ever appearance last season, which resulted in a loss in the Division 3 semifinals. The Pointers move down a division to qualify out of the Johnson Creek Sectional by edging Living Word Lutheran 2-1 in the final. They are the champions in the Southwest Wisconsin Activities League this year. Belmont will be making its first-ever appearance in the State Tournament. The Braves beat Bangor 14-1 in five innings in the final of the Riverdale Sectional to earn their first trip to State. The Braves finished second in the West Division of the Six Rivers Conference. this spring.

NEED THE QUALIFIERS?: Team information and rosters of qualifying teams for the State Tournament are available on the restricted media area of the WIAA website.

NEED RESULTS?: The quickest way to get results will be to access the baseball results page on the WIAA website at: https://www.wiaawi.org/Sports/Spring/Baseball/Tournament and choose the appropriate links on the “Tournament” page. 

FOLLOW THE TOURNEY ON SOCIAL MEDIA: Receive the updates of the State Spring Baseball Tournament on the WIAA State Tournament Twitter accounts. The Twitter account is @wiaawistate with the hashtag #wiaabase. Also like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram at wiaawi, and add us on Snapchat at wiaawis.

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