Winter Team Tournament Sportsmanship Winners
The WIAA, in cooperation with Rural Mutual Insurance, has chosen the recipients of the team Sportsmanship Awards for the 2014 winter State Tournaments.
The winners of the prestigious sportsmanship honor are Superior in boys ice hockey, River Falls Co-op in girls ice hockey, Brodhead in girls basketball, Cochrane-Fountain City in boys basketball, Evansville/Albany in wrestling and River Valley in gymnastics.
Superior was presented the award for its sportsmanship at the State Boys Hockey Tournament. It is the fifth time overall the school and community have received the sportsmanship honor, all coming in the sport of hockey. They also received recognition in 1993, 1996, 1997 and 2008. The Spartans fell to eventual State champion Verona, 3-0, in the State quarterfinals.
The River Falls Co-op, which includes River Falls/Baldwin-Woodville/Boyceville/Glenwood City/St. Croix Central, wins its fourth sportsmanship award in girls hockey. The Fusion were recipients of the award three consecutive years from 2009-11. They were edged 4-3 in overtime in their State semifinal match-up with the Onalaska Co-op, which received honorable mention for the Sportsmanship Award, as did the D.C. Everest Co-op.
Brodhead is this years Sportsmanship Award recipient in girls basketball. The Cardinals earn the honor for the first time in any sport. The school and communitys respectful contingent displayed outstanding sportsmanship in a 51-43 overtime loss to Neillsville in the Division 3 semifinals. It was the Cardinals first-ever State appearance in girls basketball. Schools receiving honorable mention were Cuba City, Oak Creek, Oconto Falls and Superior.
Cochrane-Fountain City made its first-ever appearance in the State Boys Basketball Tournament and is the recipient of this years Sportsmanship Award. It is the first time the Pirates have won the award as a single program and community. They were included in the gymnastics co-op program that won the award with Gale-Ettrick Trempealeau and Melrose-Mindoro in 2002. The Pirates attempted a valiant comeback but fell a basket short in their 54-52 loss in the Division 5 semifinal to eventual champion Thorp. The Evansville/Albany co-op receives its first Sportsmanship Award in team wrestling, and its also the first Sportsmanship Award by either of the two schools and communities. Its display of sportsmanship at the State Team Wrestling Tournament made it a clear choice as recipient of the honor. The Blue Devils were victims of a powerful Ellsworth program that captured the Division 2 championship, falling 65-6 to the Panthers in the semifinals. Burlington, Ellsworth, Kaukauna, Riverdale, Spring Valley/Elmwood, Stoughton, Wittenberg-Birnamwood received honorable mention for the award.
River Valley receives the Sportsmanship Award in gymnastics. Its the first State sportsmanship honor for the Blackhawks in any sport. The team and spectators received positive evaluations for their support of all participants, including other competitors. The Blackhawks finished seventh in the Division 2 team standings at the WIAA State Championships in March.
The WIAA/Rural Mutual Insurance sportsmanship award is presented to one school and community in each of the State team tournaments. 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 insure support for their teams are positive and that the highest ideals of sportsmanship are upheld. Award winners receive a plaque and banner in recognition of the honor. Schools receiving honorable mention are acknowledged with a certificate of recognition.
Rural Mutual Insurance has been a sponsor of this award for over 40 years, and their participation is essential to promoting of sportsmanship and and education-based athletics as a valued corporate partner of the WIAA.
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.
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