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THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
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Wausaukee Makes Way To State Baseball Meet

For the third straight year, a team from the M-O Conference will be making its way to the state baseball tournament. The last two years, Coleman made the trek and won the Division 4 championship in 2012. This year it is the Wausaukee Rangers, a third place finisher in the final league standings and owning a 15-6 overall record.

The state trip will be second one in school history, the first coming in 1999 under coach Jerry Heroux and ending with a 13-7 semifinal loss to Waterloo. Heroux directed the Rangers’ diamond fortunes for 16 years and retired following the state appearance.

Bill Wickman took over the Wausaukee program from 2000-2012 before taking an assistant principal/athletic director post in Peshtigo last fall. After building a quality program and laying the groundwork for this year’s team, Wickman handed the reigns over to rookie coach Paul Moser. And what a job he has done. Moser retained many of the same baseball philosophies from Wickman and the Rangers never missed a beat.

Wausaukee opened D-4 state tournament play on Wednesday, June 12 at 8am against Greenwood (14-3). The finals are slated for Thursday at 9am.

The 66th annual WIAA Spring Baseball State Tournament will take place Tuesday-Thursday, June 11-13, at Time Warner Cable Field at Fox Cities Stadium in Grand Chute. Ticket prices for the tourney are $8 per session and $14 for an all-day admission ticket. Tickets are available at the stadium and online with a $1 convenience fee at: https://expressoticketing.com/wiaa/pickeventbaseball.aspx.

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.

Division 1 quarterfinals were played on Tuesday, June 11 as Waunakee (21-3) took on Sun Prairie (22-2); Neenah (13-16) met Stoughton (14-10); Bay Port (22-2) went up against Hartford Union (9-11) and Stevens Point (25-4) battled Kenosha Bradford (22-5).

On Wednesday, June 12 the Division 4 semifinals began at 8 am as Greenwood (14-3) took on Wausaukee (15-6) and Potosi (18-7) went up against Lake Country Lutheran (23-4).

The Division 3 semifinals are set for 1 p.m. Wednesday with Osseo-Fairchild (16-7) battling Oconto (14-4) and Westby (20-4) taking on Deerfield (18-4).

The final games on tap Wednesday are the Division 2 semifinals at 6 p.m. with Ellsworth (16-3) meeting Notre Dame (13-10) and Lodi (20-3) taking on Waupun (23-6).

Championship games will be played on Thursday, June 13 with the Division 4 final at 9 a.m., Division 3 final - Noon, Division 2 at 3 p.m. and Division 1 at 6 p.m.

The quarterfinals, semifinals and finals of all four divisions of the WIAA State Spring Baseball Tournament will be streamed live on the Internet at foxsportswisconsin.com.

CHAMPIONSHIP GAMES ON FS WISCONSIN: Watch the delayed broadcast of the WIAA State Spring Baseball Championships on FS Wisconsin. The Division 1 title game will be aired on June 29 at 4:30 p.m. The Division 2 championship game will be aired on June 29 at noon. The Division 3 title game is scheduled to be aired on June 24 at 8:30 p.m., and the broadcast of the Division 4 championship will air on June 22 at noon. Check local cable listings for the channel in your area.

TEAM TOURNAMENT HISTORY: The WIAA has been sponsoring the State Spring Baseball Tournament since 1948. Appleton West has won the most State championships with seven, followed by Sun Prairie with six and then Catholic Central and Nekoosa with five. La Crosse Central has appeared in the most State Tournaments with 18. Milwaukee Bradley has reached State 15 times; Appleton West has appeared in 14; and Oconomowoc and Stevens Point are next with 13 State appearances.

LAST YEAR: Sun Prairie won the Division 1 championship with a 13-1, five inning win over Bay Port in the title game. Portage won the Division 2 title with an 8-3 victory over Ellsworth in the championship final. Prescott captured the Division 3 championship with a 4-3 decision over Parkview in eight innings, and Coleman outslugged Johnson Creek 20-11 in the Division 4 championship game.

DIVISION 1 FIELD: Defending champion Sun Prairie qualifies for the State Tournament for the 11th time. The Cardinals have been crowned champions six times, winning the Class A title in 1974 and capturing Division 1 championships in 1994, 1997, 2005, 2006 and again last year. They defeated Sheboygan South 10-0 in five innings in the Oconomowoc Sectional final. The Cardinals are the champions of the Big Eight Conference this spring.

Stevens Point is making its second straight appearance in the State Tournament and its 14th overall. The Panthers won State championships in 1979, 1987 and 1989, and were runners-up in 1975 and 1984. They are the champions of the Wisconsin Valley Conference this season, and they are the representatives out of the Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln Sectional by virtue of a five-inning, 11-1 victory over Hudson in the final.

Last year’s runner-up Bay Port returns to State for the 10th time and for the seventh time in the last decade. The Pirates won back-to-back championships in 2009-10. They are the champions of the Fox River Classic Conference this spring and return to State following a 10-0 win over Antigo in five innings in the sectional final played at Bay Port.

Hartford returns to the State Tournament for the fourth season in a row and for the sixth time overall. The Orioles advanced to the semifinals in 2002 and again in the last two seasons, which accounts for their furthest advancement in the tournament. They were sixth in the Wisconsin Little Ten Conference standings this season and have qualified out of the Milwaukee Bay View Sectional with a 23-13 triumph over Milwaukee Ronald Reagan in the final.

Kenosha Bradford makes its third consecutive appearance in the State Tournament and its fourth overall. The Red Devils won the State title in its first appearance in 2008. They are the champions of the Southeast Conference this season. They edged Wilmot Central 5-4 in the final of the Badger Sectional to gain entry into the final field of eight. Stoughton returns to State for just the second time. The Vikings only other appearance was back in 1986 when they advanced to the semifinals in Class A before being eliminated from title contention. They are the champions of the Beloit Memorial Sectional following their 11-4 win over Beloit Memorial. The Vikings are the champions in the South Division of the Badger Conference this season.

Waunakee is the representative out of Sectional #3 and this will be its eighth State experience, with its most recent coming in 2010. Their furthest advance in the tournament has been to the semifinals on a number of occasions and most recently in 2010. They finished tied for first place with Mount Horeb in the North Division of the Badger Conference this season.

Neenah is the qualifier from Sectional #4 and this will be the Rockets ninth appearance at State and their second in the last three years. They won a State championship in 1972 when there was just a single division, and they have finished runner-up in 1966, 1986 and again in 2011. They placed eighth in the Fox Valley Association this spring.

DIVISION 2 FIELD: Waupun advances to the State Tournament for the sixth time overall and its first since 2008, which was the last of three straight appearances. The Warriors won the State title in 2007. They finished runner-up in the Wisconsin Little Ten Conference this season and advanced through the sectional they hosted with a 1-0 victory in a pitchers duel over Racine St. Catherine's in the final.

Ellsworth finished runner-up last season in its first-ever trip to State. The Panthers remain in contention for a State championship this year following their 12-2, six-inning defeat of Barron in the Viroqua Sectional final. They are the champions of the Middle Border Conference this season.

Notre Dame qualifies for the tournament field for the second time in the past three seasons, which also accounts for its overall experiences in the State Tournament. The Tritons were ousted from title contention in the semifinals in 2011. They earned their berth this season with a 5-4 win over Fox Valley Lutheran in the Denmark Sectional final. They placed ninth in the Fox River Classic Conference this spring.

Lodi is back at State for the second time as well. The Blue Devils only other experience came back in 1982 when they finished runner-up in Class B. They are the champions of the North Division of the Capitol Conference this spring, and their trek through the Evansville Sectional culminated with a 6-3 win over Wisconsin Dells in the final.

DIVISION 3 FIELD: Deerfield is back at State for the fourth time and for the first time since 2003. The Demons have been defeated in the semifinals in each of their three previous appearances. They are the champions in the South Division of the Trailways Conference this spring and have advanced to the State Tournament with a 7-3 win over Laconia in the Markesan Sectional final.

Oconto is also making its fourth appearance overall and its first since 2003. The Blue Devils fell in the Division 2 semifinals that season and in their two other experiences as well. They tied with Sturgeon Bay and Gibraltar for the top spot in the Packerland Conference this season and earned the right to continue their quest for a State title with a 7-1 win over Pacelli in the Coleman Sectional final.

Westby needed to work overtime to secure its third State Tournament appearance. The Norsemen notched a 5-4 victory in nine innings over Parkview in the Riverdale Sectional final. In their most recent appearance, they finished runner-up in Division 2 in 1997. The Norsemen placed third in the Coulee Conference this spring.

Osseo-Fairchild is back at State for the second time and for the first time since 2006 when the Thunder fell in the semifinals. The Thunder returns to the tournament field following a 5-2 win over Chequamegon in the sectional final hosted by Osseo-Fairchild. The Thunder finished second in the Western Division of the Cloverbelt Conference this year.

DIVISION 4 FIELD: Potosi is making this its fifth appearance and its first since 2002. The Chieftains won the Division 3 championship in 1993 and finished runner-up in Division 3 in 2001. They placed runner-up in the West Division of the Six Rivers Conference this year and advanced to the State Tournament with a 5-3 win over Cochrane-Fountain City in the Weston Sectional final.

Greenwood is returning to the State Tournament for the second straight season and for the fourth time overall. The Indians won the Class C title in 1990, which was preceded by a title in 1988 and a runner-up finish in 1986. They finished second in the Eastern Division of the Cloverbelt Conference this season. They earned a repeat trip to Grand Chute with an 11-3 win over Prairie Farm in the Shell Lake Sectional final.

Making only its second appearance at State, Wausaukee advanced to the semifinals this year with a 10-0, five-inning title game shutout over Rib Lake in the Tigerton Sectional.

Lake Country Lutheran downed perennial power Catholic Central 6-1 in the final of the Barneveld Sectional to earn its first-ever State appearance. The Lightning finished in a first-place tie with Brookfield Academy in the Midwest Classic Conference this year.


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